When I last wrote, I told you that I’d been able to contact Keith Wandell, the man in Florida who works wonders with aggressive, powerful dogs. He had agreed to rehab Sawyere, and I’d agreed to pay for it. I’d relayed that good news to Donna, a shelter volunteer who works on the computer, posting dogs’ information. Donna, who lives far from the shelter–in a different country, in fact–wasn’t in a position to leave a note on the shelter door, saying, ‘Don’t kill Sawyere until you’ve talked to me!’ So it was nervewracking last night, knowing that she might not be in time to reach the shelter people.
But she did. Hats off to Donna. I owe her. Sawyere owes her, and I wonder what he’d think, if he could know these things. But in spite of Donna’s early rising and the many messages she sent, Sawyere’s life was still being weighed, when I woke this morning.
Because of his serious aggression issues, it was necessary to consider whether his continued existence would compromise the safety of the shelter staff. It was decided to call a special vote of the shelter board, and I received a message to that effect. Had I not had a bunch of my own dog chores to take care of, I’d have been chewing my fingernails.
And then I saw the message. There was one shelter staff member left who has not been bitten by Sawyere, and because she has agreed to be the only one to handle him, Sawyere’s life was spared. Imagine how she feels…I’m sorry, I’m pausing to cry, because I’ve just fully comprehended what that woman has done. I’ve just put myself in her shoes.
Because that woman is beyond normal good with dogs, she saved a dog’s life today. Because she has no fear around a dog who has given everyone a reason to fear him, she saved him. Oh, I want to tell her thank you. She’s my heroine. I want, someday, to be just like her. I will track her down and tell her, and send her something so she’ll always remember him, and what she did. She doesn’t have her own TV show, she hasn’t written famous dog training books, she doesn’t travel around the country doing demonstrations and giving lectures, but the chances are that she has skills as good as, or even better than, those folks’. Bravo to you, shelter worker. May blessings fall on you like kisses from a Pit Bull.
And for God’s sake, Sawyere, you ass, don’t bite her!