No excuse for abandoning dogs

Someone dumped them out here in the county. Threw them away, the same way they do their old appliances, broken furniture, old tires and bags of garbage.

We found them the day it rained. It wasn't a heavy rain, mostly drizzly with occasional sprinkles. But it was cold. I saw them through the kitchen window, had never seen them before. There were three of them. Two lab mix females and a Chihuahua. The lab girls were larger than the Chihuahua. Though the Chihuahua was the leader, and did her best to get them to listen to her. She ran immediately, and wouldn't get close. Close enough that we could see she still has a collar on. The lab girls are much younger, just pups, a few months old. Old enough to be away from mom. At first they listened to her, and ran when she called them. Looking back over their shoulders to see if they were being followed.

Then one of the lab girls lost track of her sister, and guardian. She was all wet, and shivering. So, I called the animal control officer. She came out, put the first one in her truck, then went to look for the other two. I heard a dog screaming, and I saw, and heard, the truck coming, and the screaming was from the poor baby. She was scared to death, of course. When her sister was caught and put in the cage with her, she quieted. All attempts to catch the Chihuahua have failed. For now she lives in the street. Taking shelter wherever she feels safe. She trusts no one. I don't blame her. Look what happened to her the last time she trusted a human. The problem is that the very best thing that could happen to her, is that she trust someone. The longer she is out here, free, the greater the chance of death. You see, some people out here will shoot her, if she gets in their yards. Then there are the coyotes. And the cars.

So far, I have seen her every day, running in the street, or just laying in the sun to get warm. How long can a Chihuahua survive in Kansas in the winter without proper shelter and food? I don't know.

Do we want to send animals to the shelter? No. But when you dump your responsibilities on us, we have to make decisions we don't want to. At least at the shelter they will have a chance for a foster home, or a trip to Denver. Out here, they have no chance. No one here wants or can care for more animals than they already have.

My only regret about this, is that we don't know who you are. If we did, we would make sure that you were held accountable for what you did. Does your decision ever bother you?

FAYLENE LEAL,

Garden City