The other day we went to visit a friend and saw the dog she had adopted about 10 months ago. It brought back memories.
About ten months ago I was running a high fever and feeling mostly dead from a virus called CMV. My temperature had been at around 104 F (40 C) for about 2 weeks. We woke up one of those lovely mornings to the sound of a crying child-- or perhaps crying children... We opened the door of our apartment to the hall and in front of our door was a cardboard box containing four (count 'em -- FOUR) puppies. They were cute. But they were puppies. There was no note. They had no food with them. As we soon found out, they had no clue that our carpet was not the friendly neighborhood poop place. And they cried at night.
Unable to care for them ourselves, under normal circumstances, but as weak as I was, impossible in this one, I started calling the local animal rescue organizations. The altruistic, humanitarian vet whose picture is in the paper practically weekly for his kindness to strays told us that he would take the pups if we payed in advance for all of their shots and a daily boarding fee until they were adopted-- this totalling several hundred dollars. The next animal rescue organization that collects relentlessly had no more room. The next one had an illness in their facility that prevented their taking another dog. In short, we were on our own.
Fortunately there were two people we knew who might take a pup each. One was a neighbor who had owned several very large dogs. Those dogs had either been stolen or escaped. They thought that perhaps a smaller dog would be easier to care for. They took one. We found out that eventually they gave him away because he was too small.
The second wa a friend of mine who had always wanted a dog, but whose husband was not enthusiastic about the idea. Actually, when she came over and fell in love with the puppy, in order to convince her, I offered free marital therapy in the event it became necessary. This is the dog we visited the other day and I am happy to report he is growing and healthy and loved and her marriage is still intact.
As to the other two pups, my husband, being a sweet and persuasive guy, went to the local shopping center armed with some puppy chow that Leah gave us and was able to find two families who happily took the dogs.
It was only after the fact that my husband figured out what had happened and why the puppies were left at our door. Our neighbor upstairs has a little male dog who is constantly running away and these puppies looked suspiciously like him. We think the owners of the mother mistook us for the careless owner of the father and were demanding a very active form of child support.