Sunday, August 12, 2007

Meet Scarlett

"If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. That is the difference between dog and man."-Mark Twain

Well, the Pied Piper strikes again! Friday night, Will and I were on our way to a friend's house, out in the middle of nowhere. Suddenly, a dog ran in front of our car, stopped, and stared at us. She came running out of a driveway, so we figured she belonged to the house there. Only there was no house at the end of the driveway, but an old church. After taking a good look at her, it became unmistakably apparent that this tagless, collarless, malnourished dog was abandoned, been out on her own for too long and was starving to death. Our friends confirmed that dogs are abandoned all the time where they live because it's a remote area.

Despite my deeply held belief in nonviolence or alteast an Augustine-like "just war theory," if I ever found the person who would leave one of Gods' beautiful creatures to suffer such a slow, cruel, and painful death as starving alone in the wild, I'm pretty sure that there would be some violence involved. The following pictures do not even properly convey the extent of Scarlett's malnourished body.

I have never in my life seen such a skinny dog. Every rib and bone is protruding from her fatless body and her pelvic area is completely caved in. Obviously, we could not leave her to starve, so she hopped in our car, and off we went. After feeding her some dinner at our friends' house (that she devoured in a second flat), we took her back to our house. On the way, she leaned her head forward from the back seat, and placed it on my shoulder. It was as if she breathed a great sigh of relief. Jokingly, I said, "As God as my witness, I will never be hungry again!" Will, not up on 1930s movie classics lines, said, "What is that from?" So, I explained how Scarlett O'Hara was starving after the Yankees destroyed her home, farm, and all sources of food. She desperately digs in the dirt, trying to eat a root from the ground. Then in one of the most dramatic proclamations in cinema histroy, Scarlett declares that she will never be hungry again, not matter what she has to do. After telling the story, I looked at the sad, wasting-away dog in our backseat and said more seriously, "I promise, you'll never be hungry again." Will suggested that we call her Scarlett to seal our promise to her.

When we arrived home with Scarlett, we fixed up a huge bowl of dog food mixed with cheese and some meat (fatty foods are needed to get some weight on her). I swear to you, I saw that dog smile. We placed the food in front of her (probably the most food she as seen in months) and watched as she devoured it. There is nothing in the world like watching a creature that has been starved enjoy a simple meal. Satisfying physical hunger is one of the rare tangible spiritual expereinces.

So, Scarlett is currently taking up residence in our yellow room (the room between our kitchen and laundry room) because it is closed in, uncarpeted, and can be cleaned easily in case of accidents. We are going to see if the Humane Society will help us place her in a good home and also put her on Craig's List. We really cannot keep this one. She is very sweet tempered, and gets along with other dogs and children FANTASTICALLY. If anyone knows anyone who would like an approximately 7 or 8 year old dog to love, let me know.

So please pray we can find a good home for Scarlett and that we see through on our promise to never let her go hungry again.

For those of you who are in the same clueless boat, I bring to you one of the most famous scenes from Gone With The Wind. :)


Tilly said...

How barbaric to leave a dog on his own to starve! Glad to know there are people out there with a big enough heart to tend to the suffering, even if it's a dog. Most people would take the "not my problem" attitude! Good Job

Wild Flower said...

Aww! I love the story behind Scarlett's name. It's very fitting and very sweet. Satisfying physical hunger for a person or an animal is a reward in and of itself. I'm happy that you promised Scarlett that she'd never be hungry again.

Peter said...

If I did not live in an partment with a no pet clause, I would take Scarlett in a second. I'm a sucker for abandoned dogs.

Tarah said...

Poor Pup! Alteast you found her before her appetite dissappeared. It's really hard to get them healthy once their stomachs shrink. If she is eating up the food you give her, she'll probably gain weight much easier and much faster. Good Luck!