Saturday, July 26, 2008

Today I cleaned up your mess

I originally wrote this several years ago, and I didn't write it in Toronto so apparently someone co-opted it and changed a few details, but that's okay. It came back to me via an e-mail forward and I thought it looked familiar, and then I realized I was reading my own material, LOL!

I actually wrote it about a cat I pulled out of the West Los Angeles shelter. I can't remember the name she came with, but the wonderful lady who adopted her from me renamed her Gossip because she was always talkative. She went to live in a three story, incredible beach house in Malibu where she lies and looks at the ocean and enjoys a standard of living that I am sure the asshat who dumped her will never experience. Heh heh heh...

It's not about horses but the same issues apply to horses. I am upset every day about the old horses being thrown out like the trash. I can't clean up any more messes. I can't afford to. There is a red chestnut 22 year old TB mare screaming my name from Craigslist right now, and I just can't do it. It's a frustrating world for those of us who care about animals. I just wish their owners cared half as much as we do.


You decided that you wanted to move to an apartment that didn't allow pets (and by the way, landlords are forbidden to do this in Toronto). I don't know what lured you. Maybe it was a boyfriend or a girlfriend. Maybe it was a great view. Maybe you liked the woodwork.

At any rate, it was more important to you than she was. So you took her down to the shelter, still wearing her cute little pink leopard collar with a bow, and you cheerfully wrote on the card that she was very healthy for her age and friendly and just likes to sleep in the sun! I guess you knew her pretty well - you put her birthday down on the card, too, making me believe you've probably had her for her entire life. Then you left, secure in your rationalization that somehow, in the midst of kitten season, your seventeen year old cat would find a home. The shelter took a picture of her scared face and big eyes and put it on the web.

For two weeks, I looked at that picture. I hoped someone else would see her fear and feel compelled to help her, but the public wasn't seeing her. She was back in isolation, getting vitamin B shots and subcutaneous fluids. The tech wrote "depressed" on her card. I'm not surprised. I'd be depressed too if I went from "sleeping in the sun" to a metal cage with a thin layer of newspaper.

Finally today, I couldn't stand it anymore. I felt too guilty thinking about her sitting in that cage at her age. So I went down and I got her, and now she's curled up on a fleece baby blanket in a cat tree in my bathroom. When I go in there, she rubs her head on my hand.

Today, I cleaned up your mess. I felt worse for your cat than you did. And all over the city, other rescuers did the same. They rescued your abandoned cats and dogs and bunnies and exotics. And we all wondered the same thing as we did it: How could you create this situation? How is it that you feel no remorse? How is it that you were you able to walk away from an animal you shared your home with for a year, ten years, fifteen years, knowing that they might die because of your actions?

I'll never meet you to ask you those questions. I just hope I meet the person who will be good enough to give your baby that sunny spot to sleep for the rest of her life (however long that is). She deserves it, and it's a crying shame you didn't have the decency to give it to her.

(I'll add a picture of the cat if I ever get my domain straightened out. I let it expire, oops, and now my nameservers were wrong and blahblahblah and that's why my e-mail is bouncing so don't freak out, it'll be fixed soon!)