Is it sport or stupidity?

Published 12:51 pm Friday, April 22, 2011

It was Wednesday, April 13 around 2 p.m. when I pulled into the shelter.

It had been a long day and I was feeling kind of weary. I was there to drop off medicine and to check on Maple, the emaciated boxer from last week’s tale. Afterwards, my intention was to head home, check messages and grab a one-hour power nap. As I was parking my car, I spotted Ashley holding a cute little boxer-lab mix on a leash. She was obviously injured as she was holding up her left hind leg and the paw was swollen to twice the size of normal. As I approached her, her little nub tail began wagging and when I knelt to inspect her, I received two quick kisses of friendship. The lady who had found her as a stray limping by the side of the road feared she had been struck by a car.

“Are you Mr. Rizzo?” she asked.

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“Yes ma’am,” I replied.

“Good,” she went on, “I want to help her but there isn’t any way I can afford her treatment.”

“Don’t worry,” I said. “Things will be taken care of and thanks for bringing her in.”

I fear I may have come off a bit indifferent to the whole matter, but I was just tired. So Joyce, the rest of this tale is for you and thank you again for taking the time to do what’s right for Cagney, the name we have given this beautiful girl.

Inside Stephanie was already making up a chart for Cagney and Trabert was calling Landrum vet to set up x-rays and treatment. The fee was being billed to our Chicken Soup Fund and I okayed it to release monies from Lennie’s Fund if needed. After concluding my business, I picked up a little beagle to drop off at Bonnie Brae’s on my way home. Outside I leaned over and returned Cagney’s kiss with a promise I’d check on her tomorrow.

The next day I visited Cagney as promised, Dr. Raines had already x-rayed and operated on her. Donna is a dear friend who has stepped up for me on many occasions that I’ve never written about. I deeply love and appreciate her.

“What’s going on, Donna?” I asked, sitting by Cagney’s cage and stroking her gently while her tail was slowly thumping. I’d observed the bandage and splint on her hind leg.

“She’s sweet isn’t she?” Donna replied as she led me toward Cagney’s x-rays. Donna pointed out that Cagney had been shot with a small caliber bullet used to hunt rodents. The bullet had fragmented into a dozen pieces.

“What in the world is wrong with people?” I shouted, startling the staff. Donna, who has become used to my emotional outbursts, tried to calm me, showing me the after X-rays.

“She’ll be fine, Lennie, the fragments have been removed from her bone and she should heal nicely.”

I gave Donna a big hug of thanks and I left. I was seething with rage and I thought that I’d best take it outside. I took a slow walk around the facility trying to quell my anger. I was literally shaking with rage and frustration.

“What sort of person does things like this?” I thought. “Did they perceive Cagney as a threat? Perhaps they were hunting for food. Most likely it was done just for the sport and fun of it.”

I’d like to get my hands on these stupid idiots and put them in a cage just like the one Cagney is laying in at this moment. But that would be treating them like a dog and as far as I’m concerned, for folks such as these, that would be an upgrade. I’m sorry readers, I need to rant now and then, in any case, thanks for listening.