Dog injured

First time I’ve written a post with tears in my eyes.

Me out of all people. A calm, cool, responsible adult during an economic depression. A vegetarian who dislikes animals.

Except he’s not an animal. He’s family. The most simple guileless, loving soul I’ve encountered in my life. Referred to as “the third child” – jokingly – to hide the sentiment’s truth.

He came into our lives from a miserable situation. We are the only family he’s ever had. Over the first few months, I saw him discover trust, safety and love for the first time.

He’s large for his breed. Glides about with the grace of a shark. He speaks inarguable timeless truths with a swivel of those eyes. It’s caused me many realisations about life beyond any book, philosophy, or sermon ever has.

I suppose this change is another set of realisations.

It was a strange incident.

He was happily sniffing around in the grass. Then something stung him. He leapt back and crashed into the shin of the person next to him. The human was fine. But the dog was not. Before long, the ordinarily happy animal was crying in pain. Then he couldn’t move and gasping for breath, tongue turning purple.

We rushed him from one vet to another. Waited anxiously for hours in a small stuffy room for a prognosis. It’s not a snake bite. The injury is to a disk in his back. He doesn’t need surgery, but the recovery will take time.

He’s stable now. Stunned, miserable, scared and immobile for now.

He doesn’t understand what’s going on. There’s nothing I can do to reassure him.

It breaks my heart to see him like this.

He’s known suffering. I thought we could give him some happiness. He’s given us joy in innumerable ways even while the outside world was going to pieces.

What’s making me cry right now is that he’s scared, and I’m helpless to change that.

Yes, yes, a simplistic egocentric emotional response. So I’ve kept the emotional part well hidden. The Buddhism help put it all into perspective. But have to get the emotional out. Hence this snivelling word pile. If I’d meditated enough this might have been easier.

I’m shocked you have read this far. Thank you for doing so.

Feature image source (Greek terracotta statue dog).

4 thoughts on “Dog injured

  1. He may be scared and miserable but he would know it was not you who had hurt him. He would understand that you are looking after him again, just as you rescued him before.

    It’s said a fully grown dog has the intelligence of a 10yr old child. Having both, I can fully agree wit this. It is much easier to train and live with our dog than an on-line schooled screen-dazed cabin fevered kid.

    We get upset because we can’t communicate & they can’t tell us what’s going on, this is all normal.

    I had to force feed a litre or more of some horrible stomach cleanser medication to ours. It made her feel very unwell but she put up with it, resting her head on my lap and looking up at me mournfully. She knew I was trying to make her well.

    Just sitting with them, talking and stroking them is reassurance that you are there for him, and it is also good for you. We’ve lived together some 30,000 years, there is understanding between us I think.

    I don’t think crying for someone else’s pain is egocentric at all. Quite the opposite. Big B would approve.


    1. Thank you 🙂 What you’ve said sheds a lot of light on what went on in me and what I saw.

      We visited him at the same time every day when he was kept at the vet. A lot of reassurance from us seems to have helped.

      He’s turned out to be an animal with a strong survival drive. New home and almost back to his happy self again. We are the worried ones. The back legs are smooth wobbly floors. His three-legged stand to pee looks precarious, but he doesn’t care.

      The vet says to keep his walks short and not let him jump. So I squat lift him to get on our bed. Probably thinks I’m being silly but lets me do it.

      He follows me around the house now. The tail wags are more enthusiastic than before. Maybe I’m reading too much.


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