As a sidebar note to that, I discovered that in 1990, the State legislature in Georgia banned the use of gas chambers for killing ... yet their own department of Agriculture has given certain rural Animal Control shelters permission to carry on their merry way with their gas chambers. We could use a law like that here in Nova Scotia, but only if the government would actually enforce it. As we all know, the society banned the use of the gas chamber in its branches in 2001 ( for more info, http://spcans.ca/about/documents/AnimalCarePolicy_2009Aug31.pdf, ) and it was not until this spring that the provincial board of the society laid down the law and took a hard line on this .... for more info see the old post Its Already an incredible day
Because I was specifically researching things from the perspective of the (ongoing) saga of Rescue Without Borders , in the course of my research I tripped over a group called Southern Cross German Shepherd Rescue ( visit their site at http://www.southerncrossgsd.com/index.shtml )
I was so moved by the piece on their front door .... so here, with permission to post from Molly at Southern Cross German Shepherd Rescue is:
KNOWING ALL OF THIS
I have rescued dogs for most of my life, from dragging stray country dogs home on the end of my jump rope to co-ordinating a German Shepherd Rescue that is operated with input and much help from family and friends.
I have learned many things over the years, life lessons like humility come quickly when cleaning up after 7 - 9 dogs every day or cleaning bloody wounds, I have learned how to cook chicken and rice perfectly for the dog that is so starved it cannot digest much of anything else, and I have learned how to tell a dog, NO! NOT on the bed and mean it for at least 5 minutes.
There are other things that I have learned that keep me awake many nights thinking about life and my place in this world. My phone rings constantly with people wanting to just give away their life long companion and I often do not have the words for the sorrow in my heart - so if you are contemplating giving away your truest frined here are some things that I know~
The dog that you have outgrown HAS NOT outgrown you. I have been in shelters and actually seen dogs cry at the touch of a kind hand, and I wonder how the person that shared this marvelous life could have just thrown it away. Please do not fool yourself, because it is selfish to believe that your dog will find a good home at the local pound. Most dogs are euthanized because there are not enough homes already and almost all owner surrender animals are the first to be killed because the strays are protected by law for 5 days. Space is space.
I have seen dogs mourn for months for the Master that has dumped them by the side of the road.
I have seen dogs starved to nothing more than skin and bone want to lick my hand because I gave them a bowl of water.
I know that dogs understand much more than humans want to admit because, if we did, we could not treat them the way we do.
I have seen dogs crawl back to the owner that has just abused them to lick their hand in forgiveness.
I have seen more true love reflected in the eyes of a dog than I have most people.
If you are looking to relinquish a Senior Dog please know that these dogs are Special in the hearts of all of who know and love dogs but there is little space for them in the rescue world. Everyone that is looking for a dog wants a young, perfect puppy. Look deep into your own heart and ask yourself how you would feel if your spouse asked for a divorce because you are getting old and aren't perfect. Your Senior dog has little chance of adoption - he has already given you the very best years of his life - he has loved, cared for and protected you - now it is REALLY your turn to care for him. Is a perfectly clean home and perfect slippers or door frame really equal to the love and care you have been given over the years? Is it really that hard to look at the situation and try to figure out a way to keep your loving friend in the only home he has ever known? Can you live with the fact that after you give your friend away you will never know how he ended his days - if it was with love or alone and scared.
If you consider yourself religious do you think your maker will care more about a clean heart or a clean floor?
If after knowing all of this you still want to give up your dog we will do everything we can to help your dog find another home because he deserves to end his days in a home where he is loved but know this - as hard as we try and as careful as we may be there is ABSOLUTELY NO GUARANTEE that the home you give your dog to will be a good home, NO GUARANTEE that your dog will not be given away again and again, and ABSOLUTELY NO GUARANTEE that your dog will not die scared and alone in a Gassing Chamber or at the stick of a needle in his beating heart in a cold dark shelter.
If after knowing all of this you still want to give up your dog you may call us.
Molly.....and the Dogs Southern Cross GSD Rescue
Do you know that one of the biggest miracle is? That in spite of those who are too callous to properly care for their best friends, that every time I am researching anything to do with the animals anywhere on the continent, I keep finding wonderful people like this who are doing what they can .... a few good pets at a time. ( the fact that any of them can even still be polite to people 'knowing all this' is a separate subject deserving of its own post on another day )
Where would we be here in NS without the tireless energy of those who have been quietly saving the animals? We might not be anywhere near No Kill Nova Scotia yet, but its clear that we have enough heart to get there.
When you see the Southern Cross
For the first time
You understand now
Why you came this way
from Southern Cross, written by Stephen Stills