April 21st 2009 12:55 pm
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A man in Grand Rapids, Michigan incredibly took out a $7000 full page ad
in the paper to present the following essay to the people of his
HOW COULD YOU? - By Jim Willis, 2001
When I was a puppy, I entertained you with my antics and made you laugh.
You called me your child, and despite a number of chewed shoes and a
couple of murdered throw pillows, I became your best friend. Whenever I
was "bad," you'd shake your finger at me and ask "How could you?" -- but
then you'd relent and roll me over for a belly rub.
My housebreaking took a little longer than expected, because you were
terribly busy, but we worked on that together. I remember those nights
of nuzzling you in bed and listening to your confidences and secret
dreams, and I believed that life could not be any more perfect. We went
for long walks and runs in the park, car rides, stops for ice cream (I
only got the cone because "ice cream is bad for dogs" you said), and I
took long naps in the sun waiting for you to come home at the end of the
Gradually, you began spending more time at work and on your career, and
more time searching for a human mate. I waited for you patiently,
comforted you through heartbreaks and disappointments, never chided you
about bad decisions, and romped with glee at your homecomings, and when
you fell in love. She, now your wife, is not a "dog person" - - still I
welcomed her into our home, tried to show her affection, and obeyed her.
I was happy because you were happy.
Then the human babies came along and I shared your excitement. I was
fascinated by their pinkness, how they smelled, and I wanted to mother
them, too. Only she and you worried that I might hurt them, and I spent
most of my time banished to another room, or to a dog crate. Oh, how I
wanted to love them, but I became a "prisoner of love." As they began to
grow, I became their friend. They clung to my fur and pulled themselves
up on wobbly legs, poked fingers in my eyes, investigated my ears, and
gave me kisses on my nose. I loved everything about them and their touch
-- because your touch was now so infrequent -- and I would've defended
them with my life if need be. I would sneak into their beds and listen
to their worries and secret dreams, and together we waited for the sound
of your car in the driveway.
There had been a time, when others asked you if you had a dog, that you
produced a photo of me from your wallet and told them stories about me.
These past few years, you just answered "yes" and changed the subject. I
had gone from being "your dog" to "just a dog ," and you resented every
expenditure on my behalf.
Now, you have a new career opportunity in another city, and you and they
will be moving to an apartment that does not allow pets. You've made the
right decision for your "family," but there was a time when I was your
I was excited about the car ride until we arrived at the animal shelter.
It smelled of dogs and cats, of fear, of hopelessness. You filled out
the paperwork and said "I know you will find a good home for her." They
shrugged and gave you a pained look. They understand the realities
facing a middle-aged dog, even one with "papers." You had to pry your
son's fingers loose from my collar as he screamed "No, Daddy! Please
don't let them take my dog!" And I worried for him, and what lessons you
had just taught him about friendship and loyalty, about love and
responsibility, and about respect for all life. You gave me a good-bye
pat on the head, avoided my eyes, and politely refused to take my collar
and leash with you. You had a deadline to meet and now I have one, too.
After you left, the two nice ladies said you probably knew about your
upcoming move months ago and made no attempt to find me another good
home. They shook their heads and asked, "How could you?"
They are as attentive to us here in the shelter as their busy schedules
allow. They feed us, of course, but I lost my appetite days ago. At
first, whenever anyone passed my pen, I rushed to the front, hoping it
was you that you had changed your mind -- that this was all a bad
dream... or I hoped it would at least be someone who cared, anyone who
might save me.
When I realized I could not compete with the frolicking for attention of
happy puppies, oblivious to their own fate, I retreated to a far corner
and waited. I heard her footsteps as she came for me at the end of the
day, and I padded along the aisle after her to a separate room. A
blissfully quiet room. She placed me on the table and rubbed my ears,
and told me not to worry. My heart pounded in anticipation of what was
to come, but there was also a sense of relief. The prisoner of love had
run out of days.
As is my nature, I was more concerned about her. The burden which she
bears weighs heavily on her, and I know that, the same way I knew your
every mood. She gently placed a tourniquet around my foreleg as a tear
ran down her cheek. I licked her hand in the same way I used to comfort
you so many years ago. She expertly slid the hypodermic needle into my
vein. As I felt the sting and the cool liquid coursing through my body,
I lay down sleepily, looked into her kind eyes and murmured, "How could
Perhaps because she understood my dog speak, she said, "I'm so sorry."
She hugged me, and hurriedly explained it was her job to make sure I
went to a better place, where I wouldn't be ignored or abused or
abandoned, or have to fend for myself -- a place of love and light so
very different from this earthly place. And with my last bit of energy,
I tried to convey to her with a thump of my tail that my "How could
you?" was not directed at her. It was directed at you, My Beloved
Master, I was thinking of you. I will think of you and wait for you
forever. May everyone in your life continue to show you so much loyalty.
A Note from the Author: If "How Could You?" brought tears to your eyes
as you read it, as it did to mine as I wrote it, it is because it is the
composite story of the millions of formerly "owned" pets who die each
year in American & Canadian animal shelters. Please use this to help
educate, on your websites, in newsletters, on animal shelter and vet
office bulletin boards. Tell the public that the decision to add a pet
to the family is an important one for life, that animals deserve our
love and sensible care, that finding another appropriate home for your
animal is your responsibility and any local humane society or animal
welfare league can offer you good advice, and that all life is precious.
Please do your part to stop the killing, and encourage all spay & neuter
campaigns in order to prevent unwanted animals.
Please pass this on to everyone, not to hurt them or make them sad, but
it could save maybe, even one, unwanted pet. Remember...They love
Now that the tears are rolling down your face, pass it on! Send to
everyone in your address book and around the world!
This IS the reality of dogs given up to shelters!
March 11th 2009 1:10 pm
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If there is H2O on the inside of a fire hydrant,
What is on the outside? K9P!
If you are a dog and your owner suggests that you wear a sweater... suggest that he wear a tail. - Fran Lebowitz
Dogs feel very strongly that they should always go with you in the car, in case the need should arise for them to bark violently at nothing right in your ear. - Dave Barry
A door is what a dog is perpetually on the wrong side of. - Ogden Nash
The average dog is a nicer person than the average person. - Andy Rooney
The best way to get a puppy is to beg for a baby brother - and they'll settle for a puppy every time. - Winston Pendelton
If a dog will not come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience. - Woodrow Wilson
To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring - it was peace. - Milan Kundera
I wonder what goes through his mind when he sees us peeing in his water bowl. - Penny Ward Moser
The pug is living proof that God has a sense of humor. - Margo Kaufman
March 11th 2009 1:10 pm
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Chihuahuas were used as hot packs in ancient times for aches and pains ...
Fact: The smallest of the recognized dog breeds, the Chihuahua, is also the one that usually lives the longest. Named for the region of Mexico where they were first discovered in the mid-19th century, the Chihuahua can live anywhere between 11-18 years.
Teacup Chihuahuas are really small. WRONG, a Chihuahua is a Chihuahua is a Chihuahua. There is not such thing as a "miniature", "teacup", or "toy" Chihuahua only bigger or smaller Chihuahuas.
Fact: The term "dog days" has nothing to do with dogs. It dates back to Roman times, when it was believed that Sirius, the Dog Star, added its heat to that of the sun from July3 to August 11, creating exceptionally high temperatures. The Romans called the period dies caniculares, or "days of the dog.".
Fact: An American Animal Hospital Association poll showed that 33 percent of dog owners admit that they talk to their dogs on the phone or leave messages on an answering machine while away.
Chihuahuas do shiver when they're cold, but they also shiver when they are wary, excited, unhappy, or frightened or any other reason they can think of.