MAGGIE: the dog who changed my life

MAGGIE: the dog who changed my life
Click photo to visit

Friday, December 19, 2008

A Dog for a Christmas Gift?

I've always heard that a new puppy under the Christmas tree is not a great idea. I guess because the receiver of the gift should be making the decision for something that is such a big committment. If it's been agreed on in the family, that's another story, I suppose. But if you are considering such a precious gift for the holidays, please consider your local humane society rather than a pet store (unless it's a dog adoption from your local Petsmart) or a rescue group. You can usually get the breed you want if you go to a breed rescue group.

Here's why I'm plugging dog adoption today. Yesterday, I went to walk dogs once again at the Laguna Madre Humane Society in South Texas. They have a few hundred dogs. Sue, a local volunteer and I teamed up to get the dogs out of the back kennels since there are 2 or more to a kennel & it's almost impossible to get one dog out. It's very humid here. The cement floors were wet from a combination of it being hosed down, water bowls being spilled, and urine. Our clothes and faces were splashed as we walked through and the dogs went into a frenzy; barking, jumping, vying for attention. Sue put the collar over one dog's head and backed out of the kennel. The other dog cowered on the concrete and slid, afraid to stand up and walk, wanting to come out with me but backing away from the leash. We couldn't hear each other talk above the roar of barking and yelping dogs. This scene repeated itself over and over with each dog we walked. But we made such a small dent.

When the shelter closed and we walked out of the chaos and flying "water droplets", so many dogs not yet walked, my heart was breaking as I listened to their pleas. I could hear them begging, "Please, take me with you; I don't belong caged and in all this stress. I want to go live in a home where I can love and be loved." I stop and peer into the eyes of one beautiful dog soul. Her paws come through the kennel and wrap around my hand and she continues to look straight into my eyes. "Please give me my dignity back. I don't belong here. Please take me home."

The humane society does a good job here with the resources they have, which are very few. Their entire budget consists of $50,000.00 per year to feed and provide medical care for all the dogs and cats. Many shelters are in a similar situation, especially in these hard economic times. Please, if you are considering a dog or cat this Christmas, please share your home and your love with a shelter dog. They will love you for it.

Dawn Kairns
Maggie: the dog who changed my life


Anonymous said...

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Dawn Kairns, Author of MAGGIE: the dog who changed my life said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting. I'm glad you enjoy it!