There are some people who seem to have been put on this earth who I believe to be living angels. My friend, Anne is one of these people. She rescues dogs. She does not run a rescue centre, but she rehabilitates and saves dogs that have been so badly damaged that they are often unable to be rehomed to ?normal? families.
We went and visited Anne this weekend ? she?s been a friend of mine for over two years but we?ve never physically met ? just conversed via the phone or email. She?s helped me enormously to rehabilitate our Labrador who came from a puppy farm when she was nearly one. Our Labrador had never lived in a house, smelt cooking, experienced the joy of an open fire or radiators, seen grass, trees or woodlands, run free. She?d been tethered by her neck (with wire), to a pole in a barn heaving with other dogs, waiting to be used as a ?breeding bitch?. Luckily for her, she was rejected. If she?d not been given to the rescue centre then she?d have been shot. This is how I met Anne. She is a behaviourist for the rescue centre that took our Labrador and helped us through the first horrible months, whilst our lives were controlled by a dog which was literally in shock to be in the ?real world?.
Anne often says these dogs are like prisoners, who?ve never seen humans properly, never seen traffic, children, houses, music, nothing. Except a trough of old food each day, water and a weekly hose down with a jet washer, aimed at them all in their pens, as they scrabble around in fear, trying to avoid the stinging blast of water.
Anne continues her work.. she now has 33 dogs who are so badly damaged that the average family could not safely cope with these dogs. They are like prisoners, realised into a world which they didn?t know existed. All they?ve known is cruelty and often complete isolation except for other dogs in the same miserable condition.
I was bitten this weekend. A little dog who had been bullied for a year by a woman who was a drug addict and her son, who?d take him out onto the grass and hit him with sticks and bricks and use him as an ashtray, to stub out his cigarettes. This little dog saw me coming into the field and he ran round me and bit me on the wrist.. and for good measure, came back and did it again? and then ran away as fast as possible. It was as if he was saying, ?I?m just letting you know.. if I bite you first, you won?t try hurting me??.of course, I wouldn?t have hurt him? he didn?t draw blood although I?ve got bruising around my arm but my heart aches for this dog and others like him.
He?d last no time at all in a family, where he may nip an innocent family member ? he?ll always have to live with Anne. Yet, he is the product of cruelty and evil amongst people who forget that animals feel emotions and pain just like we do.
If you ever wish to dedicate a healing to anyone.. send it to Anne and any one of her 33 furry children who, without her would be dead today? either murdered by their owners or put to sleep by rescue centres who do not know how to deal with them.