As we rightfully complain about the cold and suffer through it I offer two examples of creatures much better than us. One is Poet (I named her that because I am pretty sure she thinks in rhymes). She is very pregnant but still her family gave her away. Her new family either didn’t know she had been given to them or didn’t much care because Poet disappeared and was missing, in minus sixty degree weather, for four days. When she returned it was not to the new family but to the old. This time they phoned Floyd, our rescue worker in Attawapiskat, and he contacted me for permission to go and get her. Once he got it I am sure he ran to their house so no one could change their mind yet again. We had been offered Poet several times and always agreed to take her or her pups as the offer changed each time they reached out to us. We had been told they were keeping her but giving away the pups then we were getting her while she was pregnant but then they were keeping her altogether. This went on for two weeks. Finally they gave her to someone in the community (which had never been discussed) and she fought for her own survival during the coldest spell of the year. How much did she understand and had it taken four days of hiding for her to decide which home to return to as both had let her down. I am sure it was the beating of little hearts within her that gave her the fortitude to return at all.
Once Poet was safely in Floyd’s arms we agreed to send her out the following day. The logistics of getting dogs down to us is the most difficult part of our job as it involves planes, people to meet the planes and fosters to keep the dogs until we can find drivers to bring them south. Once all that is accomplished we must determine how to accommodate them when they arrive. Along with Poet we brought our seven others. We now have Hap a gentleman of a dog, three young pups named Fiction, Scribble and Scrawl, a five month old beauty named Novel and there are two still in Timmins named Adaire and Printer.
Adaire is an adult female that was taken from her owner because she was chained up outside starving and freezing to death. These dogs persevere with hope in their hearts and faith in the universe. So, next time you curse the cold or bow your head against the chilling wind, take just a moment to double the weather factors you are facing and think of a dog that is silently braving it all while waiting to be rescued.
In light of what the dogs can suffer I would like to say how grateful we are to Dundas West Animal Hospital for the care, commitment and affection they give when needed. They are now the only vets we use in the Toronto area and they make themselves available to our foster families readily and willingly. We are fortunate that our dogs are sturdy and strong health wise but it is wonderful that any dog being fostered can be taken in if there is a concern or worry. They offer peace of mind to those who are guardians of the dogs until they are adopted into their forever homes. Dundas West Animal Hospital has also agreed to take over our spay and neuter clinics in the north and we could not be more grateful. Partnerships like this are the reason we have been able to rescue 1,400 dogs and keep going for more.