Mon 22nd February: And still they come

I was asked by a journalist today about the type of dogs that are abandoned, and why.  Why are there so many dogs destroyed every year, and why would anyone buy a puppy and then simply abandon it?  Surely, she said, they are all young dogs as nobody would give up a dog they’d had for many years, would they?  Ah, if only.

I never know what I will see when I go to AFCD kennels, I only know that there will always be far more dogs coming in that I can possibly take out.  Today was one of “those” days, when I find rows of newly-empty kennels, white disinfectant on the ground marking the fact that the dog(s) that until a few hours ago was living there has now gone.  I remember them, I know which dog was in which kennel, and what they looked like.

It doesn’t take long for a newcomer to fill the space left by the ones that have just been killed.  Today there was a 3-year old, cream-coloured chow chow girl, surrendered by her family because of a new baby.  The same reason that the young labrador, another newcomer, had been handed over to AFCD.  Like the labrador, a young bulldog had a pet shop microchip but no registered owner, the buyer of the puppy having failed to have it rabies vaccinated or licensed.  What an utter waste of time and rescources to have the puppy-microchipping law in place when all it means is that the dog has a piece of metal in its body. 

I had to leave the bulldog and chow chow until later, as today was release day for the young chihuahua picked up off the street.  He’s just a year old, and sweet-natured, and I called him Nimitz in honour of last week’s US Navy volunteers.  The labrador is now called Honey, and I don’t think she’ll be waiting too long for a new home. 

A group of three black mongrels had arrived a while back, and they had obviously had a home of sorts as all of them were friendly, and one had a red piece of string tied round the neck.  I suppose you could call it a collar.  I’d taken one of the group out earlier, and today I took a second, a very sweet and fluffy girl who is now called Simone. I don’t know if it’s my imagination, but I have found the black fluffy dogs all seem to share the same very sweet temperament.  Simone was a doddle to take out and microchip.  She just wanted to cuddle up to me, and walked happily out of AFCD on a leash.

I had seen another dog just arrive, a small black and white scruffy kind, and he was wearing a plastic cone on his head.  I was told he had been surrendered because he was a tail chaser, and the collar was there to prevent him biting himself.  Sure enough, his tail was a mess, stinking and infected, and I couldn’t leave him behind in that condition.  He’ll have the tail cleaned and checked tomorrow, and if necessary it will be amputated.  At least that will solve the problem even if it’s a drastic remedy.  The dog is two years old at most, and was registered as a chihuahua cross (another pet shop microchip with no named owner).  I was sorely tempted to have him licensed as a mongrel, because that’s what he is, but I went along with the semi-breed title as I know it helps with finding dogs new homes.

I had a very disturbed night again.  The dogs were barking and restless, and I could also hear whimpering and panting.  I found out why when I got up in the morning and found a scene from hell –  diarrhoea everywhere.  It wasn’t just one dog, but many, and I don’t know what they all ate yesterday but I just pray they don’t do it again today.


7 Responses to “Mon 22nd February: And still they come”

  1. Diana Says:

    How is Murphy doing?

    • Sally Says:

      He’s fine, thanks for asking. He was 100% by Sunday morning which was a huge relief, not just because I was happy he was OK, but also because I dreaded having to take him to the vet. I’m sure he’d misbehave and bite everyone, and I couldn’t imagine him allowing anyone to do anything like put a drip in.

  2. Miri Says:

    I read with great sadness of you having to brave the experience of passing the newly-emptied kennels at AFCD. Hope your blog raises increased public awareness of what it really means to give up one’s dog(s).

    • Sally Says:

      It amazes me that so many people think that AFCD is the only option, or that buying from a pet shop is an OK thing to do. How much publicity is required to make people understand?

  3. Gary Says:

    Hi Sally,
    Is the microchip registered to a pet shop, should the pet shop know the owner? What if the pet shop was the actual abandoner? IS anyone tracking these pet shop abandonments; can the dogs be coming from the same shop?
    Absolutley Frustrating

    • Sally Says:

      The pets shops should keep a record of the buyers but most don’t (if any). Of course it could be the pet shop that abandons the puppies if they have grown too old to sell, but there is no way of knowing. I suspect that’s exactly why people don’t want the dogs to show their names because then they can be traced. I believe pet shops that don’t keep proper records of puppies sold and the people who buy them should be closed down.

  4. Marie Says:

    Yes I remember AFCD visits very well and the dogs there too. I remember wanting to spend time with the dogs there just to comfort them! For me an emotional, heart wrenching, eye opening place. It certainly brings home powerfully the reality of the situation in HK. Lots of heart to you Sally xx

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