i like to break things down to their basics....get to the heart of the matter so to speak.
i like to strip away all of the bullshit, smoke and mirrors, open wide all the frilly curtains so i see what i really need to see.
if i am unwilling to look at the stark reality, how can i possibly be effective at helping?
we get 2 kinds of animals here...
some who are suffering and others who are not.
the "are nots" are few and far between.
they are animals like kassablanka and her 6 felines..they came here from a really good home..well fed, well loved, spayed/neutered, medical issues appropriately dealt with and well controlled. they came from a home that ensured that physically, emotionally, mentally..they were safe, content and comfortable. they came here when it all fell apart with the terminal illness and eventual death of the person who loved them so.
and then there is rudi...a lovely almost 30ish horse. same family for 25 years, in wonderful shape, well loved and cared for. and then the family lost the small farm they were living on for decades, when the owner put it up for sale...hard working blue collar wages, kids to support, all they could afford was a townhouse, affordable farm/acreage living was over. reality set in.
i call these animals the "no fault"/"life sucks"/"murphy's law" ones.
these families did the very best they could every single day..their animals did not suffer for lack of love, lack of concern, lack of interest, lack of respect, lack of medical care, lack of food, lack of shelter, lack of knowledge, lack of common sense....they walked thru our gates not lacking anything, just victims of ill fate.
i don't know the histories of many who come to saints simply because the many are unclaimed strays.
strays have an unknown history..except what their bodies say.
so when a no history poodle mix comes in our doors so matted we can't tell butt from face with nails imbedded in paws....i know that dog suffered years of neglect and i pretty much don't need to know anything more.
some of them are puzzles tho..little tiny elvis is one.
unclaimed stray, emaciated, completely traumatized, emotionally scarred, desperate to be with me 24/7 safe in my arms.
but otherwise pretty healthy...neutered, evidence of multiple dentals with extractions, evidence of a growth surgically removed from his nose. how did this previously well cared for little dog end up starved on the street without a family looking for him? did his owner get sick? pass away? was he innocently entrusted to the untrustworthy to care for when his owner was no longer able? did he get accidently lost or left outside by an owner suffering from alzheimers or dementia?..did they forget they had a sweet, small dog? is that why no one went looking for him?
elvis is the only one who knows what happened, i can only look at the evidence and hazard an educated guess.
with the animals that come here with histories....from other shelters, cruelty seizures, owner surrenders to saints...they come with sometimes a lot of info, sometimes none. but you would be surprised how many suffering neglected animals come here wrapped in stories of undying love. stories of families walking thru thousands of miles of burning desert sun, doing everything and anything they possibly could to help their suffering pet, literally bankrupted by countless incompetent vets who took their money but did not fix the problem.
marvin (rip) has got to be the most beloved yet horrific and unnecessarily long term suffering cat i have ever had the misfortune to meet. it literally took us almost 3 years to undo the extreme loving that cat received.
a few folks are honest, like cheyenne's. yes we noticed her inability to walk 2 years ago. no we did not take her to the vet. now we are busy and don't have time to care for a parapalegic pet.
an accurate history in a nutshell, no sifting thru bullshit.
so here is the thing...
if we at saints can take them to ONE of our vets, follow their treatment plans, alleviate their suffering, get them back on to the feeling better track..please don't expect me to put much stock in "the been around the world and back without any results."
it just doesn't fly because the animal's bodies don't lie.
it is not my job to hunt the neglectful down and rub their noses in what they did or didn't do.
and this is the beauty of our no contact after surrender rule. it protects the animals from getting further messed up by the mixed messages of i love you but won't take care of you AND it protects the families by dropping off my radar because i am far too busy caring for the broken animals to even think about you.
i get that folks have shitty things happen in their lives. and i get that the first to suffer from shitty things are the animals lives. here is another truth...no human being in the western world will suffer for more than a day or two with an excruciating painful ear or tooth ache..they will run to the clinic, then over to pharmacy to fill their prescription. they want that pain gone asap. yet their pets will suffer the same excruciating pain...day after day...week after week, sometimes year after year and the only treatment they get is human stories/excuses.. oh and the knowledge that while suffering in never ending pain or discomfort..somebody loves them.
oh freaking yay.