12 April 2006

Kind of a Sad Day

Today my wife and I went to my family's farm to hang out for the evening. It was somewhat against my will, but now I'm sort of glad I went with her. Our old cowdog has been dealing with cancer in her mouth for a little while now and recently had a tumor removed from her lip. Today she was lying on her bed and we noticed that something was wrong with her. The cancer had somehow broken her jaw in half and she was bleeding from her mouth. You could tell she was ready to go. We had planned on putting her to sleep at the vet's office because she is deathly afraid of guns and we didn't want her last moment to be one of fear. Out on the farm things are a little different and often farmers have to put down their own animals rather than depending on the vet to come around. Anyway, it was too late to call the vet and she was in an extreme amount of pain, so we took her outside and all the kids who wanted to say goodbye got to pet her and whatever else. My dad sent everyone inside and then put her down. She knew it was her time and closed her eyes, so she never knew there was a gun around and she was able to go in peace. I helped him dig a grave for her out where our other dog is buried. She always had a big shaggy mane, so we cut a lock of hair from that and then we buried her. Right now she is probably in doggie heaven rolling in someting smelly and chasing cows across the sky. She sure was a good dog and I'm going to miss seeing her when we visit the farm.
I think people should take more responsibility not only for the lives of their animals, but also for their deaths. The people I most despise are those who drive their pets out to a rural area like ours and dump them off by the side of a road in a box to "fend for themselves," essentially sentencing them to a long slow death by exposure rather than something quick and humane, often because they don't feel comfortable taking their pet in to die. I'd like to take those people out in the desert and dump them off in a box with no food or water and see how well they do at fending for themselves. If you don't feel comfortable about being responsible for an animal once it is too sick or old to carry on or especially if you think you'll just get tired of it after a while, then you have no business owning that animal. I think that those who don't take responsibility for their pets will answer to an higher authority for it at some point.
I had my first hobby-related injury today. I got some Skaven in the mail and when I opened the box I sliced my finger open with my X-Acto knife. That didn't feel too great and it bled a lot. But at least I got sixty new Clanrats to paint.

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