I can’t save our democracy, but I can
do a little good in the world. We are adopting a dog who needs a
It’s been five years, seven months
since our dog Bea died and we’re finally ready and able. I
inherited her at age six. I lost her to my sweetheart soon
thereafter, as those two bonded immediately. When they were together,
Bea would growl to keep me away.
We would not have brought another
animal into the house in any case. Our cat Bolo had health problems.
We, and the Vet, feared the stress might kill her. Bolo took her only
pet status as her due. I lasted three weeks after she died and
We brought King the cat home from our
local shelter. He has learned the words “King” and “no.” We
figure he’s ready too.
We found our dog-to-be on line through
Adopt-A-Pet. They and Petfinder offer a function to search local
shelters. We looked at a number of home-seekers, but one just stuck
with us both. A two-year old stray, she’s smaller than King the Cat
by three pounds and was described as loving, smart, and goofy. I
can’t think of a better combination of traits in a dog.
Used to be, cats and dogs found me. I’d
take them home, have them checked by the vet, and that was it. Each
one integrated with my other furtails eventually.
Now, with both King the Cat and the
dog, there were applications to fill out for the safety of the
animals, because of the evil humans do. The rescue workers really,
really care. I had a long phone interview with the dog’s shelter
administrator. Another volunteer did a virtual house and yard tour
with Google Duo. I just finished the last hurdle, talking at length
to the foster mom who is absolutely besotted with the dog.
We’ll go get her in eight days. Our
excitement knows no bounds, but oh, the preparations.
When I was younger, I’d bring home a
stray and that was that. The cats and dogs seemed to work it all out
with very little fussing on my part. Experienced now, we have a
laundry list of to-dos before we can welcome her home. Like naming
her. Any suggestions?
King the Cat’s food dish has moved
atop the washing machine. All his low-lying toys will be elevated. We
have a schematic for gradually introducing King and the dog. We’ve
fretted about King’s powerful jaws – my hands and arms are a
testimony to their strength. This weekend we’ll go through Bea’s
legacy of paraphernalia. Will her harness adjust to the correct size—
the new gal is only eight pounds. Will she wear the coats Bea barely
tolerated? Fetch the balls and frisbee Bea ignored?
The biggest project is creating a small
grassed yard for her use, especially in the high wind, heavy rain,
coastal nights when walking up the block and across the street is
simply too unpleasant for woman or beast. In her old age, Bea plain
refused to go outdoors in those conditions and had to be carried and
set on the ground.
So, we’ll tear out the abundant
spearmint I planted (the bees loved it). Then layers of small rocks
and ground cloth will be at least partially excavated, the ground
leveled, and good soil added. Fifteen rolls of sod will cover the
ground. We’ll likely need to rent a roller to do whatever rollers
do to attach the sod and soil.
The women we’ve worked with to make
this all come true—at Match Made in Heaven Animal Rescue and
Renee's Foster Dogs, both in Oregon—are good, good people. All
volunteers, the time and money they spend, the problems they tackle,
their kindness and devotion to the animals dwarfs the current sour
mess of the world at large. They’re the kind of people who should
be running the U.S.
Breaking news on my computer strikes
blow after blow into my heart and mind. Kidnapping a female governor
because she tried to protect her state from a lethal virus? Beating a
professional jazz pianist in the New York subway until he can never
perform again—because he’s Asian? Voting for a madman president
with no moral backbone or political expertise, who goads Americans to
divisiveness and violence?
In these evil times, I’ll cast my
vote to grasp at what’s left of our proud democracy. I want leaders
who build, not destroy, whose purpose is to serve every single
citizen with honesty, respect, and courtesy.
What's giving a safe home to one small
dog in the nasty scheme of things? A gesture, a bit more love than
was in the world yesterday.
[Editor's Note: Lee Lynch is the author
of over 13 books. Her latest, Rainbow Gap, is available at
Books. You can reach Lynch at LeeLynch@ontopmag.com]
Copyright 2020 Lee Lynch.