One great example from our Sustainability Director, Tracy Halward. Thank you for this great example of kindness toward another being.
On the Fourth of July, my neighbor and I found a frightened, anxious dog – a golden retriever mix – roaming the neighborhood. She was wearing a collar, but had no tags. We went all over the neighborhood – first by foot, and then by pick-up truck so we could cover more territory – trying to find her people, or at least someone who recognized her. We were unsuccessful. I didn’t have the heart to leave her in the after-hours kennels overnight at the Humane Society. That would be traumatic enough on any night, but especially on a night when the city fireworks display was just beginning at the fairgrounds, which is right next door to the Humane Society.
I decided to keep her at our home overnight. I gave her some food, water, and treats. She wouldn’t leave my side. At bedtime, I slept next to her on the floor in the living room. The poor thing couldn’t relax. Between the (illegal) fireworks in the neighborhood blasting off all night and being in a strange place with new people, she kept going from the window to the front door to the deck. I would get her to settle down next to me for a few minutes at a time, while I held her, but then she was right back up making the rounds – window, front door, deck; window, front door deck. Twice during the night, she settled down next to me for about 45 minutes. That was the only quasi-sleep either one of us got that night.
In the morning, after a special breakfast, we walked around the neighborhood again. I hoped she would lead me to her home or I would come across some lost dog fliers with her picture on them. No such luck. When the Humane Society opened at 11 AM, I took her there so they could scan her for a microchip. With a sad heart and fingers crossed, I left her in their care. When I checked back in with them later, they had found her humans and she was safe at home!
Lessons learned: (1) Always have your dogs’ tags on their collar. Make sure one of those tags has your current contact information. (2) If your dog (or cat) is micro-chipped, make sure you keep your contact information up to date with the micro- chip company. (3) Take extra precautions to make sure your pets are safe and secure on the Fourth of July and New Year’s Eve.
Fortunately, “Sweetie” (that is what I called our doggie guest while she was with us) had a happy ending to her adventure. It just as easily could have been tragic. We are only one block away from one of the busiest street in the city.