A different story

September 2, 2010

Yesterday’s news was unspeakable.  And it was awful, and I mentioned it because I couldn’t bear not to, but it’s really not my story to tell (It’s Jessica‘s).  Today I wanted to tell you a different story.

Today I want to introduce you to two little ones who also were strong when they needed to be, and whose love for their family transcended even the worst events.  These little ones — these dogs — witnessed the murder of the man who cared for them and loved them all their lives — and showed such good grace in the moments when they were tested nearly beyond what one could bear. 

Adopt me?Adopt me?This is Wally.  And the guy over on the right there is Woody.  These senior beagles (between 8 and 10 years old) witnessed the murder of their person and stayed with him until his body was discovered … over a week later.

Their reward?  They were impounded by Animal Control, waiting in vain for a family member to come forward and take them home.  They played with each other and the staff, passing temperament tests “with flying colors.”  But no one came for them.  On the day they were to be euthanized, BREW Beagle Rescue (Midwest) was called, and BREW quickly agreed to take them in. 

The beagles are safe.  But they need a home, and they’d love to be taken in together, as they are very bonded, with “funny antics all the time. They can’t help but make you smile.”  (I’m tempted to drive to Ohio myself to adopt them!)   

BREW takes in dogs like this every day, dogs who lived in happy homes that were torn apart by some unforeseen circumstance, dogs who wandered away in search of a good scent, and dogs who simply outlived their owners’ interest.  If you’re looking for a dFoster me!og to adopt, please consider rescue, and if you’re looking for a good cause to support, I highly recommend BREW. (I can’t adopt all the dogs, but I can donate now and then to help with bills)  Oh, and if you just want to share the love with a dog but can’t commit to their sometimes-20-year lifetime?  Apply to foster a beagle, to cuddle and snuggle and feed and train and love a beagle dog or puppy — foster homes make all this rescue possible.


Puppy Love!

November 13, 2009

BREW beagle rescue, my favorite rescue group, has three BEAGLE PUPPIES coming in to DC this weekend that need foster or forever homes. They’ve also got DOZENS of beagles of all ages available for adoption. These dogs are living in foster homes with families, couples, and singles all across the PA/MD/DC/VA area and the Midwest. They’re learning how to behave, how to live with a family, and how to be loved, many for the first time. There are dogs who are housetrained, dogs who were left behind in a move or after the birth of a baby, dogs whose owners have moved to retirement homes, and dogs who have never known a real home of their own. These dogs need love. They need people to love them.

If you’ve got love to spare, won’t you click over and consider becoming a foster home for BREW beagles or your local animal shelter or rescue group?

Edited to add:  BREW is having local adoption day events THIS SATURDAY in Alexandria, VA, Delavan, WI, and Downer’s Grove, IL, and this Sunday in Gurnee and Machensey Park, IL!  Come out and meet the beagles — and see if one of them has been waiting just for you!

Book club

July 13, 2009

I should have read the book weeks ago.

I’ve read a lot this year, actually, as my children have grown into beings that act grown-up during their waking hours but need the sweet solace of mama’s arms as they fall asleep. I read them books, then I prop the flashlight beneath my chin, as I did as a child, and read myself books as they drift softly into naptime, or bedtime, or the endless twilight hours of summer that refuse to yield to darkness and sleep.

I love to read. Always have. But when there’s a deadline, I often leave it to the last minute, cramming as much Life as I can in the space before the assignment is due, knowing that I’ll pull together and finish the work, turn it in on time, hand it in hot from my old dot matrix printer (oh, sorry, that was college), and it’s only a question of how productive I can make the procrastination period: of course I can ace the assignment — but what else can I get done in addition?

And so I went about my business, conducting interviews with NASA mission managers, coaching soccer, potty training my toddler and doling out m&ms. When I stopped by the library to find the book last week, it was checked out – but another book looked interesting, (Accidentally on Purpose, by Mary Pols), so I checked it out and read it instead (diverting, but not complex). It was only when a friend offered me her copy on Thursday that I realized that time was short, that I should say yes, and that book club would actually come on Monday, as it always does.

I began to read. And then I couldn’t stop. A Three Dog Life, by Abigail Thomas, was completely absorbing, if confusing in its nonlinearity, and saddening as we readers watch her husband, hit by a car on page three, try to recover from a traumatic brain injury. The author’s comfort is her dogs.

For years, I had heard about this novel and looked forward to it, thinking that surely the dogs were sequential and integral to the story: one after another, the graduate school dog, the family dog, the dog of middle age, but that time would be there for me to read it when I got around to it. It was reading the book that reminded me that time is not always there. Time is but a framework for how we live, a way to measure what is yesterday and what is today and what can be forgotten as well as what may never come to pass. Time for the author’s husband is but a moment, a single moment, and it does not always correspond to the moment that the rest of the world is living in.

How chilling. But throughout it all, the author is comforted by her dogs: Harry, Carolina, and Rosie. Life goes on for her and the dogs as it stops completely for her husband. It is an intriguing contrast, one that remains with me after the book is done. How should one live a life, and how lucky are we that we can contemplate that?

I made it through the book in a three naptimes and a half (hours before the deadline of appetizers at the local wine bar), and held it all together just fine, unaffected, just another reader, until the book club questions in the back.

What is the coldest night you have survived? What dogs helped you through it?

Oh, Kepler.

How will I possibly hold it together during book club?