|Polly just after she arrived|
Polly came to us less than two weeks ago, emaciated and pregnant. Worried that carrying the pups any longer would be too much for her, we had her spayed. However, after a few days she was unable to keep food down and her blood tests showed her white cell count was through the roof. The vet was not even sure how she was still standing, let alone looking so bright-eyed and waggy tailed.
We placed her on medication to help her kidneys recover, but it was clear that she was loosing the battle and starting to suffer. I stayed with Polly through her final medical procedure and she passed peacefully.
Even though she was with me for less than two weeks, Polly wormed her way into my heart. She was a sweet and loving girl that was eager to please and just wanted to snuggle with her human. I was honored to be the human that she focused on in her last days.
Although it angers me that her former owner allowed her to get into such poor condition, and I am heart broken that she did not win her battle, the good news is that Polly did not die alone and forgotten of starvation under some abandoned house. She had someone looking after her and loving her for the last 10 days of her life, and I will miss her more than you will know.
People tell me all the time that they could not do what I do in rescue. They could not bare to see dogs in such bad shape, and lose them if they do not recover, or lose them through adopting them out if they do. Even taking care of healthy dogs is too emotionally difficult for them because they will eventually have to give them up, and they can't face that.
Although I am crying as I type this, missing Polly and sorry that I could not undo the months of starvation that irretrievably damaged her health, sorry that I did not have the ability to take her in when she started her five day hold with the City, sorry for the puppies I had to abort trying to save her life, and sorry for the family that wanted to adopt her and will now miss out on getting to know such a wonderful dog. What I am NOT sorry for is having her come into my life.
Polly was a quiet, gentle spirit that was clearly grateful for every bit of attention she received and she gave her love and attention back ten fold. She taught me a lot about patience and resilience. I was honored to have known her, and I am glad I had the opportunity to make her last days as comfortable and full of love and attention as possible.
"How can you do this?", you ask. "How can you put yourself through this continuous cycle of love and loss? How can you care for them and then give them up? or put them down if they can't recover from their illness?"
"How can you not?" is my reply. How can you not help when you know there are great dogs, like Polly, in the shelter that are depending on you to give them a chance?
How can you not?
If you would like to help great dogs like Polly, please email me at HPHS@Ymail.com. You don't have to foster. You can help by coming to walk them, clean up after them, throw balls for them, or simply donate funds to get them medical care or special toys, food and treats. Dogs are called "Man's Best Friend" for a reason. Don't deny yourself the pleasure of meeting as many as possible, and don't miss another opportunity to exercise your heart by letting another life touch you, however briefly.
Rest in peace Polly. Thank you for your love and attention.
Your Best Friend, Jenn Andersen