I thought and thought on this one, and wow, what a thing to choose on a Sunday, of all days, right? But really, nothing hurts my heart more than to see a picture or television commercial or program of animals in shelters. Three or four weeks ago, on a Saturday, The Hubby and I went to our local PetSmart to purchase a few toys for our babies; we have four dogs & one cat--yes, we're enormous pet-lovers and would totally have more if we didn't live in a subdivision. Well, as most of you who own pets know, Saturday is Adoption Day at PetSmart. So, what was on the cat toy aisle this day?
You got it. Wire cages. Each with a dog or cat who so desperately needed a home. The first dog I saw was a large-breed female, older--maybe 5 or 6--whose adoption fee had gone down to, like, half-price (most are $60), because I'm guessing she'd been there for a long time. She looked up at me with those sad eyes, and I swear I heard her whimper, "Please, Lady. Please take me. I really don't like this place anymore."
My husband, bless him, took my hand, squeezed it, and said, "Baby, you know we can't." And, yes, I knew. But it still hurt so bad that I had to get out of there. Literally, I was tearing through people and pets (excuse me, excuse me, I'm so sorry, excuse me...) to get to the next aisle. There, I sobbed for a good minute or so, my husband rubbing my back, before I finally looked at him and said, "Why do they always take the puppies? Why can't someone, anyone, just take the older dog for once??"
He didn't respond. Because really, what response is there? It's the same way with adopting a human child; why should adopting a pet be any different? But it is. It truly is.
At any rate, I left with my heart hurting and swore I'd never go back on a Saturday, unless I could take one home. I will say this: Please, people, please. Don't buy from pet stores. ADOPT. RESCUE. Because, yes, non-kill shelters do exist, but the majority practice euthanasia. And why shouldn't every dog or cat be given the opportunity to just live? When I got my French Papillon, Despereaux aka Dez, brought him home, and put him outside, on our lush green lawn, he froze. Limbs board-straight, little brown eyes wide. For a while, he shook, and it took several seconds for me to realize: He'd never seen grass before! Never felt it beneath his little paws, smelled all its wonderful, earthy aromas.
Yes, I cried. Wouldn't you?
So, if you're in the market for a pet, check your local shelters--most of them these days even have online sites, where you can view all the precious canines and felines looking for homes. You can also check out adoptions.petsmart.com, as well as http://humanesociety.org/issues/adopt/.
Thanks for reading, y'all. Oh! Tell me what picture makes you angry or sad! War pictures are another which always bring tears to my eyes. Why can't we all just get along?
Peace, Love, Junior Mints, and homes for all animals, whether domestic or safe in the wild,