I’ve been in dog kennels more often than I care to count. I would not have to count very high; there are people who are not veterinarians, SPCA employees or canine foster parents who have been in and out more in one morning than I have in my lifetime. But whether I’m there for myself or a friend, it’s hard to think of someone’s dog in that cage looking up, hoping against hope the person walking down the aisle is his or her human. How dogs ever forgive their owners for locking them up and leaving is beyond me.
“We give dogs time we can spare, space we can spare and love we can spare. And in return, dogs give us their all. It’s the best deal man has ever made.”
So here is my advice, free of charge so don’t tell me it’s worthless.
Among all the things you must never do, even so you can say you did it, is to walk into a kennel just to look around. Because invariably you will find the one dog who catches your eye, and he or she will use the amazing Bog-given ability to pull your eye from its socket with the optic nerve attached all the way past your brain down your throat through your chest and into your heart. And though you may be mighty (and medically skilled) enough to wrest yourself away, replace your afflicted eye and throw yourself from the kennel, you will find the dog has been thrown out with you, in spirit if not in fact.
My friend Suzanne innoculates herself by keeping a cat, but her sideline is raising money to provide bulletproof vests for police dogs (www.k9armor.com). She invited me up to see the display of adoptable pets in the display window of Macy’s on Union Square at Christmas.
This little guy pretty much ignored all the people tapping the window and making goo-goo eyes through the glass and probably just wanted to go back to sleep. That is, until I crouched down to take a picture.
Here he’s gotten it into his furry head that he might have a friend on the other side of the too-reflective overdressed window he’s stuck behind. And I could feel the gravitational pull of Canis Major on my eyeball, so Suzanne and I beat a hasty retreat.
So. Add Macy’s windows at Christmas to the list of places to avoid. Your eyes will thank you for it.