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Marcie's in the front passenger seat. She's got one dog in her lap. There are three dogs in the back cargo area, two in crates, one free. I've got one dog with me in the backseat. I'm holding a plastic bag up against its butt because it's taking its second crap in the car. The first one I missed and had to wipe up but it wasn't too bad (considering) because it was fairly solid. I tell Johanne, who owns the car, you'll be happy I'm catching this one before it hits the seat, because this one is a mess. Yellow porridge. They're groaning at the smell up front. I tie up the bag, put it on the floor.

The pooper dog, a little Schnauzer Terrier mix, who is covered in shit and piss cuddles up against me and then lies down on my lap. It's trembling.

"How much longer?" I ask up front.

"25 minutes if the traffic's good," Johanne replies.

I'm concerned about what else might come out of him but then I'm saying, "Well how much worse can it get? His bowels must be empty by now".

"There's always puke," Johanne says.

Ten minutes later, the little guy has puked up his morning meal on the backseat. Pea soup. He starts heaving again for a second round. I try to catch it with the plastic bag, get most of it but it still gets all over the bag, inside, outside, down the dog's chin, legs, on my jacket, my pants. And the first puke is roiling on the seat with the remnants from the first shit.

"My husband's going to kill me," Johanne says.

I'd push the dog away from me but then it would be stepping in the waste so I let it come back over to me. The dog, covered in filth, trembling somewhat subsided, lies down on my lap. I breathe through my mouth.

1 Comment to “Road trip 5”

  1. kb says:

    Just seeing that sign scares me...

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A request

The reason for this blog is to help get specific dogs adopted from TAS but equally important is to try to normalize the idea of shelter dogs being just as good and just as desirable as any other dogs including those which are regularly merchandised by backyard breeders, puppy millers and those few remaining pet store owners who still feel a need to sell live animals. The single greatest stigma shelter animals still face is the belief that shelter animals are substandard animals. Anyone who has had enough experience with shelter animals knows this is untrue but the general public hasn't had the same experiences you've had. They see a nice dog photo in a glossy magazine and too many of them would never think of associating that dog with a dog from a shelter. After all, no one abandons perfectly good dogs, right? Unfortunately, as we all know, perfectly good dogs are abandoned all the time.

The public still too often associates shelter dogs with images of beat up, sick, dirty, severely traumatized animals and while we definitely sometimes see victims such as these, they are certainly not the majority and, regardless, even the most abused animals can very often be saved and made whole again.

Pound Dogs sometimes discusses the sad histories some of the dogs have suffered. For the most part, though, it tries to present the dogs not as victims but as great potential family members. The goal is to raise the profiles of animals in adoption centers so that a potential pet owner sees them as the best choice, not just as the charity choice.

So, here's the favour I'm asking. Whenever you see a dog picture on these pages you think is decent enough, I'd like you to consider sharing it on Facebook or any other social media sites you're using (I know many of you do this already and thank you for that). And when you share it, please mention that the dog in the photo is a shelter dog like so many other shelter dogs waiting for a home. If we can get even five percent of the pet buying public to see shelter dogs differently, to see how beautiful they are and how wonderful they are, and to consider shelter dogs as their first choice for a new family member, we can end the suffering of homeless pets in this country.