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Hopefully, Brownie’s life, death teaches responsibility

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By The Staff

Recently, I cried for brown dog with an orange collar. He was near starvation when he came into my life.

He was afraid of everyone and everything, but was aggressive if someone got close to him. He usually stayed in an outside shed at night and hid in the woods during the day. He would return late at night to eat the food I left for him.

His broken and maimed body apparently tried to heal without veterinary treatment. There was no ID tag. I placed an ad in the newspaper and posted a notice in the local animal hospital. There was no response. The animal shelter said he could not be adopted because of his behavior.

Where did he come from? Was he abandoned? Had he been abused or tortured? Had he been a fighting dog? Was he lost? Did his owner care enough to try to find him or even miss him? Did he ever have a chance in life?

I named him Brownie. I gave him a soft bed, along with food and water in a safe, enclosed building that protected him from the cold, rain and snow. I gave him toys. He didn’t know what to do with them. Had anyone ever played with him, even as a puppy? I spoke kind words to him every day. He began to trust me and he began to allow me to pet him. He became my protector. Unfortunately, he became vicious to everyone who came near me. Had he been trained this way?

Because of his aggression, I was unable to get him the veterinary care he needed. He was a threat to my family, visitors and to my other dogs. I wanted so much to adopt him, care for him and just love him.

Because of his aggression, I knew I had only one choice. It was definitely one of the saddest and hardest decisions I’ve ever made. I’ve had old and sick dogs euthanized, but this was so much harder. Brownie was just trying to be a good dog by protecting possibly the only kind person he ever knew. As I watched life drain from the body of my dear friend and protector, a part of my heart drained from me and I cried many tears.

A copy of “Rainbow Bridge” was given to me by a veterinarian, the late Dr. Bill Lazenby. It is said to be based on Genesis 9:8-17, when God made a covenant with Noah and every living creature on earth and set his rainbow in the clouds as a sign of the covenant.

“Rainbow Bridge” depicts a beautiful, make-believe place just this side of heaven where our beloved pets go when they die. When their special human friend reunites with them, they cross the rainbow bridge together, never to be separated again.

I don’t know if there will be animals in heaven. I hope so. I don’t know if I’ll ever see Brownie again. I hope I will. I do know that for a short time he brought me happiness on earth and I hope I made his last days on earth just a little better and a little happier. I hope he felt my love.

If this letter helps just one person to become a better, more responsible and loving pet owner, then Brownie’s life and death and my hurt will have made a difference.

Sara J. Huse

Fort Lawn