Thursday, August 10, 2006

The special level of Hell.

For those of my Gentle Readers who don't get the above quote, it's from the best Science Fiction series that no-one ever watched: Firefly. The preacher, Shepherd actually, named Book tells Captain Malcolm Reynolds that if he takes sexual advantage of a woman, he will go to a "Special level of hell, one reserved for child molesters and people who talk at the theatre."

Well, I'm fairly sure that the "special level" is also going to be populated with those invertebrates who decide that it's a good idea to drive out into the boonies and abandon the family pet.

Nothing quite as heartbreaking as driving down a dirt road 40 miles from the backside of Nowhere and finding an obvious family pet running down the road in a panic, looking for his family.

And I don't want to hear the excuses. Anyone who thinks that a dog would be happier in the wild, hasn't stumbled across what's left of the family dog after a pack of coyotes gets done with it. More than once I've followed buzzard sign or coyote sign, to find a gutted house-pet, dying in agony.

I didn't take that dog to raise, but I'm the one who has to give it a mercy shot, because his owner is a chicken-s*** excuse for a man; and I'm getting very tired of it.

I used to have five dogs slobbering on various stuff in the house: a Chihuahua, three cowmutts and a bullmastiff -- all of which I've found abandoned in the boonies. I'm pretty sure the first four were dumped because they are female, and the catamites who owned them were too sodding lazy to get them neutered, but didn't want puppies. The bullmastiff got dumped -- well, he was a bullmastiff and weighed in at about 180 pounds.

That dog ate a hell of a lot of food, and the nutless wonder who took him decided that he'd be happier out on the caprock, which coincidentally, would mean that the nutless wonder wouldn't have to cough up money for kibble every month.

I speak of him in the past tense, because after 11 very full, very happy years of being mauled, ridden like a horse, gnawed on, dressed up, chased, whispered to, slept on, and snuggled to a fare-thee-well by various children and other family members, my beloved bullmastiff passed on. He was a house-dog to the very end, and he left a very large, very slobber-free hole around here.

I used to think that I'd like to run across the nutless wonder who dumped that dog, just so I could impress on them what a loving, loyal, devoted creature they deliberately abandoned, but these days I think the nutless wonder just needs to go to hell.

Anyhoo, I was driving down a dirt road a while ago when I spotted a large buff-coloured puppy running frantically down the bar-ditch, looking desperately at each vehicle going by.

*sigh*

Another bloody huge, sweet-natured, mastiff-y mutt has taken up residence. The children are delighted, the other dogs less so.

And he's decided that the leg area under my computer desk is his den. 70 pounds and not grown yet.

*sigh*

I hope the person who dumped him enjoys his stay in the special level of hell.

LawDog

39 comments:

Anonymous said...

With you its dogs, with me cats. Mr and Mrs. Soft Touch here share the house with 9 kitties. Almost all were strays. The latest a black and white 'tuxedo' about 12 weeks old that turned up in the parking lot at the shop one rainy day two weeks ago.

Walt

Jeffro said...

I live on a farm, and have had several strays over the years. At the moment, a spayed female Heinz 57 dog lives with me. She showed up and ate my other dog's food, but wouldn't come close to me. It took a month or two of bribing her with treats to pet her. She had been beaten - badly. Now she is a one man dog. I'd like to kick whoever beat this very loving animal right in the nuts. She still isn't very trusting, and it's been five or six years.

I hope you are right - there needs to be a special hell for people like that.

Hammer said...

All my dogs have come from the side of the road. One guy actually came up to my fence with a puppy and told me his girlfriend sent him out to kill it and would I please take it.

Nutless is too kind of description for those who abuse and abandon animals. For chrissake a mercy shot is better than being left on the side of the road.

Yes Virginia there is a special hell for pet dumpers, child molesters and wife beaters.

Jon said...

I have a lab that was dumped with 9 babies in process. I found them homes after she dominoed and had her fixed.

There must be a special, special Hell for the demon that left a dog so covered with mange all that was left was skin covered with infected flea bites and scrathes. He was so far gone when I found him in my driveway, he could only raise his head and try to growl. The bullet was mercy. Whoever left him deserves the same treatment.

Vic303 said...

Dawg, I volunteer with a Ridgeback Rescue group in your 'general' vicinity. Now I will say this, for a 'breed specific' rescue group, they sure have a mighty BROAD definition of 'Ridgeback'! ;) Sometimes, I swear the non-Ridgebacks outnumber the Ridgies!

Anyway, THANK YOU from the bottom of my doggy-loving heart for care & kindness (even the 'final kindness') that you give to the strays & abandoned dogs you find.

elliot said...

Firefly!

Also known as "cowboys on the Millenium Falcon."

God, I love that show.

And my dog. Also, love my dog. (A mutt rescued from the shelter. Is there any other kind?)

Phoenix Ravenflame said...

My four best friends in the world wear fur coats, and two of them were definitely dumped. One may have escaped, but nobody went looking for her. And one actually came from a family that, when they were moving and couldn't keep him, made the effort to find a good home to place him in.

I have worked in a no-kill animal shelter and seen more than I want to of dogs who were dumped, abandoned, and neglected. Nine times out of ten, a little love and a good meal showed them to be creatures who will risk everything just to stand by your side. The tenth time, they'd be too far gone and have to be released from their pain. And every time one came in, I became more convinced that spaying a nuetering the pet owners as well as the pets wouldn't be a bad idea. I don't want these people teaching kids that this is how you treat an animal.

I like to think that when these people die and Anubis puts their heart on the scale, he takes special joy in knowing it's not going to balance.

ben said...

some dogs abandoned will just wait where left for their owners to come back, till they thirst or starve to death. It is sad, as someone said I wish I could be the man my dog thinks I am. Even the abandoned ones have that loyalty.

Zundfolge said...

"You can tell a lot about a man by how he treats his dog."
-Roger Caras

Doug said...

I am the proud servant of 3 cats found curled up on the gunny sack they were carried in, out on the pony express trail in Utah 15 years ago. How can you leave something like that out there, much less take them out like that?

MarkF said...

'Dawg, strays of all description wander up to the house all the time. Hell, we feed so many the foxes and raccoons were showing up at dinner time on a regular schedule for a while...
One young, friendly dog showed up with a collar and tag. I called the owner, some 70 miles away...
The sunofa - well, he wasn't interested in coming to get his dog, but asked if I'd be kind enough to mail the collar back.
Told him that if he'd just come down to get it, I'd make sure he'd have a painful time losing it again.

EgregiousCharles said...

I stopped for a stray pit bull just last night. A young lady from a veterinary school stopped at the same time, however, and she was much better equipped (had leashes and treats in her car, and lots of contacts for placement if the owner couldn't be found). I currently have one stray and one shelter dog.

Art Eatman said...

I had to deal with a lot of "throwaways" when I lived not far from Austintatious. Beyond our limit, I'd haul Pore Pooch to the pound.

One time, talking to one of the SPCA folks there, the lady commented, "Yeah, they probably drove right by here, on their way out into the country."

All those stories about Apache torture? Hey, way too gentle...

Art

shooter said...

I'd start with that turd's little toe and a pair of vice grips. I would stop with the car battery and jumper cables. I've seen my share of missing and strays, too. My lil' sis rescued 'George' from the pound when she was in college. It's not a special level, but just a small room containing the owner, a proctologist holding a chainsaw, and the owner's former pet. For the former pet, that is doggie heaven!

Sailorcurt said...

Good on you.

My wife and I live in town and have a very small yard and not much bigger house. For that reason we can't adopt every dog we fall in love with.

We do have a 75 pound Lab/Pit Bull mix as a permanent member of the family and a 13 year old Springer Spaniel/Beagle mix which my wife shares custody of with her ex-husband...both rescued from the Norfolk SPCA.

We also foster for Animal Rescue of Tidewater so we always have a transient dog as well. Right now our tenent is a 14 week old Pit Bull puppy named "Luv"

Basically, we give stray/abandoned/abused dogs a home and nurse them back to health if need be until they are adopted by a permanent home. Then we take in another, lather, rinse, repeat.

It breaks my wife's heart every time our temporary tenent gets adopted, but we keep doing it because fostering gives us the opportunity to help more dogs than just adopting one or two more which is all our homestead could support.

It is very rewarding, if sometimes frustrating and always heart wrenching. I recommend fostering for anyone who loves animals but doesn't have the ability or space to run their own shelter like Lawdog does.

Calico Jack said...

Thanks to all of you for taking stray animals in, and tending to them as their needs be.

I'm reminded of Pete the dog, who was about 30 pounds of light brown hound, and who my girlfriend and I rescued via a 'free to good home' ad. Pete lived to about 18 years and was great with kids and other animals. Late one night he saved my girlfriend from a rapist.

All my pets were found along the road, one way or another, and they've always been the best dogs and cats a man could wish for.

Anonymous said...

I raise my Shiner Bock in toast as I scratch Dixie Dancer's ears (Rat Terrior, most often described as a Jack Russell on amphetamines, or as a 100 pound dog in a 15 pound body).

Well spoken LawDog.

Striker

Oldsmoblogger said...

God bless ya, LawDog.

Tennessee Budd said...

I live way-the-hell-and-gone up in the hills. Like, you, I'm the one who must do the harsh things. Hell is too fucking luxurious for those scum who'll dump an innocent, uncomprehending family pet in the wild.
You're a good man, LawDog, I don't care what people say.

scromp said...

You're a good man. Thanks.

BryanP said...

I'm with you Lawdog. My wife and I currently play host to 5 cats and Bob The Big Dumb Dog, all of whom were rescues. One of the kittens showed up on the doorstep less than a month after my wife's favorite (above me, even) passed on. He had this look on his face that screamed "I heard there was an opening?"

The most recent acquisition was found squalling in the ditch in front of our house with an ugly winter storm on the way. He hit the cat powerball- my wife.

And yeah, every time I drive down the road and see some dog looking lost and forlorn I want to stop and take him with me. But I can't. I'm at and past capacity. Dammit.

Mark said...

Lawdog,
All three of my cats were strays, I suspect one was dumped, one was, er, catnapped from a place that didn't take care of her (and where her littermates were all run over by the family car because they couldn't be bothered to watch where they were going), one was abandoned by her mother or something happened to the mother, she wasn't even weaned when I found her. All three are great cats.

I understand that sometimes people have to get rid of pets, but you either find a new home for them or (especially if they're old or have health problems) you put them down humanely. That's part of the responsibility you take on when you take in a pet. In my 43 years I've probably spent less than five of them in total without at least one pet.

Anonymous said...

Few years back my daughter has come home with a filthy miniature Chihuahua. How this dog hasn't been eaten by the large dogs running loose in our neighborhood, I'll never know. I know he's been beaten - one day I was holding him in my lap and jokingly said the phrase "beat the dog" and he ran away from me and hid under the bed... Any time I picked up the phone or remote, he ran too... I can now say "beat the dog" all I want and he is no longer afraid. I can't imagine who would leave such a sweet, little dog to die. But, I am greatful. Our family was going through some rough times and my daughter always wanted a Chihuahua but we could not aford a dog at the time... It came into our lifes and brightened hers at the best possible time. Now she has 2 Chihuahuas!

Kimberly said...

I don't understand how people can be so heartless. I'd be lost without my 15 year old lab mix that's been my best friend since I acquired her when she was 8 weeks old and without the now about 3 year old cat we adopted from the base shelter while we were overseas.

I've often told hubby, if it ever came down to having to choose between him and my dog--he'd loose.

arclight said...

Ni Hao Lawdog!
A correct headed person, animal lover and Browncoat to boot!
I boosted your signal over to www.fireflyfans.net
Keep Flyin'

arclight

Tristan71 said...

Good to see Browncoats are all over the place!
Thank you for posting this. I am sorry for your loss, but it seems that the Bull Mastiff had a good, full life thanks to you. And, hey! Another loving friend finds a new home!

kateykakes said...

You are a good man, Lawdog. You've got compassion and heart - something so many people lack these days.

My house has ALWAYS been a haven for lost or abandoned animals and it will always stay that way.

Currently we have two cats and a dog (Shiba Inu), whom we rescued from the pound.

I'm ready to take in another kitten and I'm sure somewhere down the road, another dog will make his/her way into our home and hearts.

Kudos to you, LD. :)

Anonymous said...

I like way the hell out in the sticks but far out enough and by geographical happenstance to get an awful lot of dogs and cats dumped on the blacktop which wander a mile or two down the gravel roads to my place or to the neighboring farms. Now we of course all have our own animals which we love and care for but we don't want anyone else's. We can call the county and bother the sheriff and he'll send out a member of the local constabulary like Lawdog to dispatch the beast which may or may not be there when he arrives. Frankly they don't have the time to be dicking around with such nonsense. If I were to call the sheriff and ask, after the YGTBSM are you serious!?!?!? he'd say something like “jeez anonymous can't you just do it? I'll buy you a cup of coffee when you're in town next time or something.” The scary part is that several of the ones we've had dumped out are pit and rott mixes. They get so mean and dangerous that they can't be controlled and people find out they're going to lose their house insurance or something so they dump them out in the country. I've had them damn near bite me several times and chase me into trucks and outbuildings. Dropped one with my pistol feet from me. He'd have mauled me badly if I hadn't been carrying and I emptied 8 rounds of .45 into him before he stopped. Liked to have scared me to death.

Which brings me to what happens to all the cats and dogs that get dumped. To all those gutless losers who dump their pet animals out in the country thinking a kindly farmer wants them and they'll wander up to his farmstead and be taken in and live happily ever after here is what happens. Kindly farmer sees your doggie coming up the driveway and sends a 55 gr Sierra Blitzking bullet crashing through your puppy's cranium. He repeats as necessary. He doesn't want his dog exposed to anything yours is carrying or hurt by your dog nor does he want large chunks of his flesh liberated from his delicate person by the mouth parts of your dog. He does the same things when he sees stray cats. Feral free running cats are a menace to wildlife and kill songbirds, gamebirds and small mammals in massive numbers. Nope Mr. and Mrs. Gutless Pet Animal Owner your little country drive didn't let your unwanted problem end up in a warm barn it ended with your pet animal laying dead in a pit covered in lime – if it was lucky. If not it wanders around starving and injured for weeks until it dies a slow lingering death and maybe gets hit by a car or two and dies slowly at the side of the road in a ditch with broken bones bleeding to death internally for a few days unable to move and get food or drink. All because you didn't have the guts to do the deed yourself or take it to a vet or shelter and have them do it for you. You sniveling gutless turds. Everyone in my neck of the woods is really sick of doing your dirty work for you.

Hobie said...

My mother has SEVEN (yes 7) cats whose former owners will be in that special level of hell. Together we've found homes for 3 dogs also abandoned.

Tell the truth, you are secretly happy God provided this pal for you. ;-D

Anonymous said...

i've got two huskies we adopted from the local shelter.

huskies are all the rage now, it seems, perhaps because of a couple of disney kids' movies that portrayed them as lovable and cuddly and generally great pets.

well, huskies are eminently UNsuitable as everyday family pets. they need ridiculous amounts of exercise, can't be left alone because the separation anxiety drives them insane, and will take off at a dead run the moment they're let off a leash or otherwise get out of control. that dead run usually won't stop until they're too exhausted to move, not infrequently two county lines away.

so they end up in the shelter after they're caught as strays, and i end up with another husky. *sigh*...

Ulises said...

I agree.

When the Zombies come at them, they'll wish that they had a big bull mastiff to fend them off.

If they didn't want the pet, then why didn't they give it to an ASPCA unit? Lots of folk would love one loyal friend. I have two: cat & dog. Some days they may be pains but they're never boring.

And my dog just took on two felons that had broken into my yard to hide from the cops & convinced them to surrender to the waiting Legis canes.

Already worth the feed.

LogEyed Roman said...

Bravo, Lawdog. And I'm glad your bullmastiff had such a rich life.

Right now, though I'm stressed by having to hunt for a job, I'm watching two dogs for a friend of mine. They are great dogs; Boston Terriers, but they both have a history of neglect and shelter hopping. They are reasonably comfortable now but putting them in a kennel is out of the question. While it's a sacrifice for me, really there's no other alternative.

I'm a Roman Catholic and believe that the value of humans totally supercedes that of animals, but I also believe we have a duty to animals. And make no mistake about it; one of these heartless idiots who would so neglect and abandon a pet, would do more or less the same to a relative, friend, employee, customer, their country, you name it.

There's an old joke (that was made into a Twilight Zone episode): A man died and woke up on a shining road. To his great joy, his dog, who had died many years before he did, was there to greet him. After the joyful reunion, they started up the road.

They came to a shining gate, all gilt and lamps. There was an attendant in a beautifl 3-piece suit. "Hello there! Welcome to Heaven!" he called to the man. The dog growled softly. "Come on in! But you have to leave the dog. No pets allowed in Heaven, I'm afraid."

"Then I'll just continue up the road," the man said coldly" "But that's limbo!" the attendant said. "You'll never be able to come back! You'll never get into Heaven!"

"Thanks anyway," the man said, and went on up the road.

After a long pleasant walk, he came to a low wooden gate with a man dressed like a farmer. "That's a beautiful dog," the man said. The dog had already run up to him, wagging its tail. "Think you and your dog would like a drink of water?"

"Sure!" the man said. The person dressed like a farmer let them through the gate, and got them some water from a well. It was the best water the man had ever tasted.

"If you'd care to stay," the farmer said, "this is Heaven."

"Can I keep my dog?" the man asked suspiciuosly.

"Of course. Why not?"

"Well, the last gate of Heaven, the guy said no pets in Heaven." But the farmer figure was smiling.

"That was Hell, not Heaven," he said. "I'm glad you turned them down."

"Oh!" the man said. "Don't it make you mad that they tell folks they are Heaven?"

"Nope. In fact, we're grateful for them for screening out all the people who would abandon their best friends."

LogEyed Roman

Anonymous said...

The only thing wrong with dogs and cats is that they don't live long enough. The some of the sadest days of my lfe have been saying that final good-bye to a pet. Good luck with the new pup. Jim B

Marko said...

You're a Good Man....capital G, capital M.

KCSteve said...

Good on you LD!

As to the NW - I hope that Special Level includes Empathy.
Lots and lots of Empathy.
I want them to feel exactly what the little ones they betrayed felt.

Over and over and over again for all eternity.

Cheryl Howard said...

No such thing as a bad dog, only bad owners. We've rescued and fostered big dogs for a bit over a decade. We've had 100% success finding our fuzzy friends humans willing to jump thru circus poodle hoops for them. We have no mercy in setting the bar very high, these dogs have already been disappointed by the human race, we leave no room for it to happen again.

We've lost a couple of our own pooches to old age the last couple of years, we have a couple more to keep us humble, all were/are rescues. Still, I have always really wanted a Mastiff. Afterall, a rabies vacine costs the same if its a little wee dog or a giant one--so I say get your monies worth. :-) So Law Dawg, should you ever happen upon another, please keep us in mind.

Also, I believe that people who are mean to animals do have a special sort of hell--just as those who love our animals have a special kind of heaven. Hopefully there we see our beloved furry friends again...

Cheryl Howard said...

Addendum to my prior post. I received an email today "How to Hug a baby", a series of photos featuring a baby and a Mastiff. Very cool, very funny. And it must have been a dad taking the photos, mom would have responded differently me thinks. Anyways, if anyone would like to see it and can't find it on the web, email--I'll forward it. howard@bendcable.com

Cheryl Howard said...

Gee, three in a row. Well, its a couple weeks later...so I'll make myself at home.

Within the hour a new addition will be joining us. A 4 year old Great Dane found bound to a tree in the badlands. His pads are worn raw; his collar was so tight it was growing into his neck. A friend discovered him Sunday am.
She's still pretty shaken up. She took him to the vet (to remove the collar) and learned he had a chip that was never registered. Technology being what it is, we learned who the vet was and back tracked. Once we had the owners name we called local law enforcement for a quick check and learned the prior owner had a very long close relationship with them. We won't bother contacting her.

We hear the pooch is very sweet and becomes very distressed when she closes the bathroom door--he is her shadow.

He'll need a lot of love and a lot of caring, and maybe a bit of training. Also, my husband will need to replace the doggie door with maybe a sliding glass ensemble.

So Law Dog, just how much does a really big dog eat?

Michael Z. Williamson said...

I found Opus 15 years ago, at 20 below, while delivering pizza. He had fleas and earmites, at 20 below. He tried to crawl into the engine to stay warm.

Gail brought Ghost, who got into her secure building at 6 lbs and fur.

Mama Cat adopted us to place her 8 kittens at a local pet store that would take them, once cleaned.

Gimpy lost a foot in my unit's storage bay, and found a home from my garage to a friend.

Just before Opus died, Misty stalked and glomped the weakest member of our tribe--our then three year old daughter. "Daddy! I've got a KITTEN!"

Cameo came from the local rescue with a clipped ear. At least someone had the decency to drop her at the pound, in the night deposit chute.

Dickens, the 11. pound. kitten. also came from Cat's Haven, being badly abused when younger. After 5 months, he'll actually dare to be in the same room as human beings, and will let us approach within a couple of feet.

People who beat or abuse their spouses, children or pets are so low I can't even find a name to fit.

One reason I need more acreage and house space--a place they can at least be out of the elements and have clean food and water. I'd adopt them all, but only have so much space in my home.