Today I was in Bosleys, buying Tierce some shampoo, when a girl brought in a puppy. The puppy looked like a German Shepherd mix. He was alert and curious, but when he trotted forward to explore the store, it was apparent that something was wrong. The puppy’s right front leg was the worst; the leg sloped straight down from the shoulder as it should, but suddenly veered inward and then out, like someone had kicked Mr. Puppy’s front legs out from under him and they had healed crooked. His tail was gray, scaly and dead two inches from the tip.
I asked where he came from and the lady with the girl said, “The rez.” We all nodded our heads. In Nanaimo, when someone says “from the rez”, we pretty much don’t have to ask why a dog looks unhealthy. Dogs from the reservation generally come with a whole host of problems stemming from neglect and sometimes outright abuse. She said that a friend of hers was jogging through the reservation when she saw a group of teenagers dragging the puppy with a shoelace. She stopped them and demanded the puppy, which they gave up with a cheery, “Here you go!”
I try to be fair. I’m not fool enough to think that race or culture invariably means that people are going to abuse their animals. There are plenty of people from all cultures who are absolute shits towards their dogs. However, when I see the condition of animals rescued from the reserve, I want to scream, “WHAT THE FUCK?! WHY DO YOU HAVE ANIMALS IF YOU CAN’T OR WON’T TAKE CARE OF THEM?!” I mean, we have the Internet, we have veterinarians. The reservation is not in butt-fuck nowhere; it’s about 5-10 minutes from Petroglyph Veterinary.
Okay, so I’m probably speaking from Caucasian lower-class privilege. No, I don’t intimately understand the many factors that contribute to the abuse and neglect of dogs on reservations. I’m sure there are plenty of reasons: different culture, lack of education, lack of resources, etc. I know all about having to decide whether you’re going to eat or if you’re going to take your dog to the vet. I still cannot comprehend this kind of attitude. Maybe someone can explain it to me.
There is some hope for Mr. Puppy. If his health problems aren’t too serious, the family who brought him in will adopt him. He is alert and friendly. He seems unaffected by his joint issues and eagerly attacked a biscuit offered by the Bosleys staff. It could come off all right for him.
But as for the rest of the dogs still on the reservations, I can only quote a lady who had worked in them rescuing dogs for years: “They are big on the totem of the Wolf and the Bear, but what about the Dog and the Cat?”
Reserve Dog Liberation – blog about dogs on First Nations reserves
Big Heart Rescue Society – Working to promote S/N and vaccination in remote First Nations Reserves in BC
Okay, this might come back to bite me one day.
I swear, if this happened to me, those people would not make it out of the house alive. Go ahead, use this at my trial.
Abby Toll, the woman who allegedly taped the Shiba inu, Rex, to her refrigerator is allowed to leave the state to head to Chicago. There, she will live with her mother and her mother’s dog. There is no report as to whether the mother is going to leave her dog alone with Toll; I certainly hope not.
Toll’s boyfriend/punching bag, Bryan Beck has a court appointment on Thursday for a pre-trial conference. No word on whether he has obliging relatives with pets.
Lisa Pedersen, chief executive officer of the Humane Society, says Rex was placed with a family in the Denver-area that could adopt him by the end of the week.
Pedersen did not identify the family, but says they have other Shiba Inus they have come from other rescue organizations.
“I think he’s adjusting as best as we could have hoped,” Pedersen said. “Our goal is that he has a very happy ending and we think that is very possible.
Pedersen says the shelter got requests from as far away as New York, California and Wisconsin from people who wanted to adopt the dog.
Look at that poor puppy – see the top of his back? Here’s hoping the next news item will be that he is adopted! The foster/adoption family seem as perfect for a Shiba in Rex’s situation as can be – let’s hope it works out!
Two-year-old Rex is now living with two other shiba inus at the home of a Denver-area couple, Humane Society chief executive officer Lisa Pedersen said Tuesday. She said the foster arrangement is a test to see if Rex can adapt to his new surroundings.
Pedersen declined to identify the couple who took Rex in before an adoption is official, but she said they have experience dealing with abused animals. She said the shelter got requests from families as far away as New York, California and Wisconsin — all of them willing to drive to Colorado to pick Rex up and provide a home for him.
Awesome! Three cheers for Rex! Let’s hope the home he finds can work with him to get him over his abuse issues. It can be an uphill battle, but with a dedicated owner, Rex will at least have a fighting chance to get the life all dogs deserve.
-Thanks to Leslie, who commented on my last post to bring us this link.
Lets remember also that the battle for Rex isn’t over – Abby Toll will appear back in court next month. Let’s keep this alive until the case is over so people will remember what she did!
Here’s a disturbing news item: In the comments on the article “Boulder man gives up custody of dog taped to fridge”, there’s a post from “MountainHaven” saying the following:
We have 218 people on the Facebook group “Justice for Rex“! To date, there are 13 photos of Shibas who want justice for Rex and we’re hoping for more This group is exciting, because there have been some donations made to the Humane Society of Boulder Valley in Rex’s name which were attributable to the group’s publicity. However, there are many Shiba and general interest bloggers who have also done a lot to publicize Rex’s plight and get people interested in helping him and other abused and needy dogs.
I’m thinking of making a video (using a stuffed toy, not Tierce, ha ha) to illustrate to people what this kind of thing would actually do to a dog. I’ll have to find a suitable Shiba-like toy that I can use and find the battery charger for the camera.
The Humane Society of Boulder Valley has a page for Rex. If you can find it in your heart (and pocketbook), make a donation for Rex there. Or donate to your own local SPCA/humane society/rescue. After all, Shibas are dogs and abused dogs need our help and support.
Abby Toll, who allegedly did this to Rex, appeared in court today.
Now, on to some happy things: