I believe I left you on Thursday with a promise to get back to bricks. In fact, I have brick stories just waiting to be posted. But we’ve had another “development” over the weekend. If you were here two Mondays ago, you know that I reported on a little puppy found on a garbage heap. We tried to keep him alive but it was too late for little Donald. Well, there is another canine with me now and I do believe we have reached him in time. When you hear the story, you will be wondering along with me how this poor guy has survived for so long. But somehow he did, and NOW, I will go to the ends of the earth to bring him to health and give him comfort. He deserves it.
This story actually goes back months. I can’t remember if I mentioned it on the blog or not. None of us can now remember exactly when it happened. Older Daughter, who still lived here at that time, was coming home late one night. She saw a dog who was terribly skinny and looked as if he had no hair. She followed him in her car, but he turned and when she got to where she could turn down the same road, he had disappeared. Older Daughter said he was a walking skeleton and that even though it was dark, she could tell he was hairless from what she could see of him in her headlights. The next night, Older Daughter and Younger Daughter and I went looking for him. We drove for a long time that evening, even after dark. He was nowhere. For weeks after that, any time any of the three of us was driving through that part of the country, we looked for him. We never saw him. Of course, we assumed he didn’t make it. If he was as skinny as Older Daughter perceived him to be, he couldn’t have survived indefinitely.
On (this past) Saturday night, Older Daughter was driving to her home after being out late with friends. As she got to the area where she’d seen this dog before, she nearly fainted when she saw what she thought was this very dog, lying in the middle of the road. She got out of her car, headlights on the dog, and started talking to him. He got up, tailed tucked, and started to move away. But a whistle stopped him. He stared at her and she stared at him. And then he turned . . . towards her. She sweet-talked him right into the back seat of her car. Older Daughter said the drive home was too satisfying to describe. What were the chances? But then again, we’ve always said that we’ll take in whoever needs us - all they have to do is cross our path. How about lie down in the middle of the path? Yep. That works too.
She drove to our house, in the middle of the night, and quietly walked this guy down to my kennel. Of course, Husband and I were sound asleep. She gave him a small amount of food, and then she went home. I got a text VERY early Sunday morning - I need to talk to you BEFORE you go to your kennel this morning. I texted back - Oh, boy. What should I get ready for?
Older Daughter explained and I felt euphoria. We had the dog we’d looked for months before! And then when I actually laid eyes on this guy, I felt even greater euphoria - if there was EVER a dog who needed us, it was this guy. Not only was he still alive, he was now in our care and we would start immediately working on his health and comfort. A quick lookover gave some immediate information. Skeleton thin. (HOW had he continued to survive?) Mange - severe. Fatty tumors in two places (HOPE they are fatty tumors). Toenails so overgrown as to make it difficult to walk. Diarrhea - severe. Fleas - hundreds. Ear infection - severe. Teeth worn down and face gray with age.
Older Daughter went to work yesterday, and Younger Daughter came to my house to start to work on our new (old) boy. Younger Daughter named him Gandalf, to be called Gandy. I gave a first dose of doggie anti-diarrheal medication. Younger Daughter gave him a bath in a skin-soothing shampoo. We applied flea treatment. Very small amounts of food, stretched throughout the day. Older Daughter went to work at the shelter and put in a call to the shelter veterinarian. She left a message that Gandy needed to be seen asap.
Gandy is very old. Practically everything on his body is a source of pain, or at the very least discomfort. I don’t know the full prognosis yet. I know there will be LOTS of treatment ahead. We are going to foster him until the shelter can give him a spot or find him a home. (Older Daughter stopped by to get him this morning to be seen by the vet today.)
I realized (yet again) as Older Daughter told me the story of finding him that this is what I live for. Then I realized (yet again) when Younger Daughter and I were doing what we could yesterday to make Gandy more comfortable that these are the times I feel most alive. There are lots of things that make me happy in Life. But honestly, bringing a dog or a cat out of a nightmare and into love and comfort is TRULY when I feel the most alive. It is peak passion for me. It is deep joy, wide open happiness.
Gandy is an old man. But whatever time he has left will now be lived in comfort and with love. Yesterday was Day One of The Good Life. Rest assured that for however long this guy is here with me he will be showered with love. He deserves it. They all do.
See you tomorrow when it will be Back to Bricks.