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Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Been reeling over Lennox today... 

There was a part of me that really didn't believe they'd actually go through with it against the weight of worldwide opinion.  It's bad enough feeling so sad about it but my heart really goes out to Sarah Fisher, who actually spent time with him.  

It reminds me of a dog I worked with that was also destroyed for no good reason...

Every dog I work with, I form a bond with.  It's unavoidable.  A couple of years ago I was asked to assess a dog for a breed rescue. He had come in for showing aggression towards a small child, but the child had been trying to hug the dog while he was eating.  I was told that the dog had been subjected to non-stop chasing and hugging from the child since it had been born a couple of years previously, and 'without any warning' had snapped at the child... 

To cut a long story shorter, I assessed the dog as having some slight proximity issues around food (to be expected), calm, quiet, gentle and just wanting to have his own space and bumble about without being pestered.  He'd have been the perfect companion dog for someone who just wanted a bit of company while they were working at home or doing the garden; perhaps a retired / semi-retired person or couple without any visiting children.  I'd have had him in a shot, but then I was used to mastiffs and although this dog wasn't a mastiff, his temperament was very similar.  He'd have made someone a very loving companion.

I received an email just a few hours after my assessment from the foster carer telling me that the dog had been destroyed.  When I asked why, it was because his temperament was not indicative of his breed and he would be un-rehomeable.  In other words, because he wasn't bouncy and bright with a constantly wagging tail he wasn't to be given a chance.  Another dog who had lost his life due to breed 'type', but this time  because he WASN'T typical of type.

I only spent an hour or so with him but I still remember the quiet, gentle way that lovely dog had about him.  I remember his quiet, thankful eyes and how restful and at peace he seemed now that he was in a quieter environment without being pestered all the time and used as a plaything or child's toy.  I will never forget him and how needless his death was.

So my heart goes out to Sarah tonight as she also remembers a dog that has been lost for no good reason.  

I wish that humanity's obsession with 'breed' could simply die and we could see dogs as individual as we see ourselves.  Perhaps Harvey and Lennox would be sleeping on a sofa somewhere now.