Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Left behind

Having a Web site relating to people and pets makes me want to scream at least once a day. It's not hard work - I love it. It's not the animals - I love them; I share my life with enough to make up a soccer team.

It's the people I don't like. Not all of them because I have met some awesome people who, like me, love pets and humanity and all that's still good in the world.

The people I don't like are those who don't love their animals, who don't treasure every moment they have together, who leave them behind - literally, behind. Alone, in an empty house or tied up in an overgrown back yard. Not a word to anyone, a neighbor, a friend, that there is an animal being left. No thought to the animal at all. They do this sort of thing...when moving to another city or state and the pet is suddenly an inconvenience...when fleeing a hurricane...and now, the latest, when the bank has foreclosed on their house and they're not sure where they'll be spending their next night. (Click on title link for the article which promoted this blog entry.)

Hey, before you paint me callous, I am not without understanding here. In one of the darkest hours of my life several years ago, after my divorce, I was faced with the possibility of not being able to afford to stay in my home. I considered putting the house up for sale. I thought about the moving process and where would I go. I worried the bank would foreclose before I could sell it.

I frequently envisioned myself, walking down Interstate 95, with nothing but my cat in his carrier under one arm, a small suitcase full of all my earthly belongings under another, maneuvering three leashes with panting dogs on the end of them. I might have to start sleeping under a bridge, I told myself, but at least I'd be with my animals.

Point is, my life was not in good shape. But never once did I decide to vacate my home and leave my animals behind to...grow hungry, be confused as to where I went, wonder where was food, where was water, where was mommy, growing weaker every day...until the unthinkable might happen.

If you ever face a foreclosure, or if you ever move and know pets won't be accepted in your new residence, or if you ever flee a hurricane, PLEASE let my words ring in your ear. Make arrangements for your pet(s) beforehand. If you can no longer care for a pet, please contact your local humane society or animal rescue. You'll be starting over, so please give them the chance to do the same, not to die a slow, painful death alone, in what was once their home with their beloved, UNdeserving humans.

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