15 November 2007

Critter magnet

I took off down the road at a blistering trot this morning, with my trusty shiny black running buddy doing his best to drag me. Glancing over into the neighbor’s yard, I noted a small dog there.

Huh, I thought. They don’t have a dog. I trotted on.

I swung out onto the trail behind the house and picked up the pace from trot to painfully slow shuffle. I was just settling in when one of the other morning regulars, a gentleman of maybe 70 years or so, flagged me down.

“Have you seen a dog that might have been hit by a car this morning?” he asked.

I shared that I’d seen a small dog in the neighbor’s yard and didn’t know the story behind it. The old man continued on his way, and I continued on mine. Jack and I finished our run (poorly), after we were forced to take two pee breaks and one poop break. None of these, I point out, were for my benefit.

As we passed the neighbor’s house, I noted the small dog was still in the yard. Startled by a large truck passing, he got up, and I could see he was holding a rear leg off the ground. Ahh…the injured dog.

I shoved Jack in the house, found a phone, and went back outside. He was gimping at a good pace, headed back into the open area behind our row of houses. I called the animal people, since they pick up injured critters. And if it was my injured dog, I’d want whoever saw it to call it in.

After letting them know the dog’s description, condition and location, I went out in the back yard to scoop some poo. As I finished, it occurred to me that the little gimp may have been wandering toward the busy road. Taking a cup of coffee out the front door, I went walkabout around the perimeter. There, on the strip of grass the separates our side fence from the busy road, was Injured Dog.

I placed my coffee cup in the grass and said, “hey, come here.” And he did. I looked him over, seeing an obvious case of road rash on the right back leg. “You going to bite me if I pick you up?”

He looked at me, and I scratched his ears. I scooped him up, and rather than flail or bite, he snuggled up against me, shivering. I carried him into the garage – he only weighed maybe 12-14 pounds. I made him a little bed out of a towel and an old sheet, then went in and called the Broken Animal Division of the local PD.

“Hey, this is Abby. I called earlier about an injured dog in the area. I found him next to my house, and he’s in my garage.”

I handed him off when the Broken Animal Lady showed up (I want her job). She looked at him, “We’ll get you to the vet for some good drugs!” She looked at me, “He looks like a pit bull puppy, but he’s got adult teeth. I don’t know. I hope he’s not a pit – because…well, we don’t adopt out pits. We’d have to put him down.”

“Yeah,” I said. “I hope not, too. He seems like a nice little guy, and I think he might be an adult.”

There was a collective shrug, and she carted off the little injured guy.

I hope he does okay, and I hope the verdict is not “too much pitbull,” because he sure seemed like a sweetie. Honestly, I’d be inclined to think he was more of a smaller terrier, but I’m not sure what sort that would be.