Letting Go

I finally called the Animal Shelter today to find out what happened to the dog I turned in last week.  A part of me didn't want to because I was afraid that he wouldn't be claimed by his owners or deemed appropriate for adoption, and thus would be euthanized.  I chided myself for being cowardly and tried to think more optimistically before dialing the number.  Still, when I was connected with the operator, I used clinical and objective terms and phrases like, "I'd like to inquire about the disposition of the animal." I literally said that.  I guess it was an effort to emotionally distance myself from possibly bad news about a dog who I had already named "Bodhi" in my head.  It didn't work.

First, the operator told me that the owners never came and the dog wasn't going to be put up for adoption.  When I asked why, she said the dog had tried to bite the animal technician who was handling him.

"So," I replied dully, "he's going to be put down."
"Actually, he was already put down."
"Oh." Oh no. "When?"
"The 25th."
"Oh. Okay, thanks."  Click.

Although I know I did what I thought was the right thing at the time, taking Bodhi off the streets where he could have been hit by a car or attacked by another animal, or abused by some pre-sociopath, I still feel horrible, especially after finding out from a friend last weekend that there are such things as 'no-kill' shelters available. Would he have fared better at one of those places, I don't know.  But he would have been alive.

I also feel bad knowing that had my own situation been different, I would have kept him.  My mother told me when I called her, upset, that the kindness I had showed him at the end was maybe how he was supposed to go, given what could have happened to him had I not intervened (and that's why I love my mom).  That helped a little, but I still feel guilty.

All that I can do now is say a prayer, and look up no-kill shelters to have on hand in the future in case this happens again.  And let go.

Bye, Bodhi.