Monday, July 14, 2008

Where Love Resides Pt. 2


Guess what? The pity party is over. I don't need to pinpoint when I was in love in the past, or why it didn't work out, or live with angst over lost opportunities. I don't need to prove to anyone, including myself, that I've had great loves in order to give my life some sort of cinema-inspired purpose. I have love in my life right here and now. True blue unwavering love. This is where love resides. In the face of this sweet, adoring puppy. A puppy I found, or found me, just a few months ago. Who makes me laugh every single day. Who snuggles with me while we watch TV. Who counts on me to take care of him and protect him. And most importantly, and miraculously, who trusts me completely.

I didn't know Riley for the first seven months of his life so I don't know exactly what his childhood story is. I know that the Humane Society brought him up from a shelter in North Carolina just a few days before we met, but they knew nothing about his background. He adamantly refuses to tell me anything about his previous life - which I find very frustrating. There are signs, though, that his life was difficult. When we first met, he was so thin his ribs were showing. He has small scars on his nose that won't seem to heal. He has a large chip in one of his front teeth. He was terrified of certain rooms in my house - especially the ones with tile on the floor (he has since overcome this fear). If he felt he did something wrong, he would literally bow down submissively at my feet and wimper (he has since overcome this as well). But his absolute sweetness, his loving nature, and his silly antics completely won me over.

My biggest concern was the limp I noticed a few days after he came home. At times he would be running perfectly fine, and then suddenly he would pull up his one leg and hobble along. The vet said it was probably just an old injury and gave him some medicine. The limping seemed to get better, but I couldn't help but notice that his hip wasn't quite right. So back we went to the vet for x-rays. When the vet came back with them, she told me that there was one thing she expected to see, and another she didn't.

What she expected to see on the x-ray was that Riley's hip has dysplasia. The vet believes that he was not born with it, but that he was either beaten, hit by a car, or even possibly thrown from a car. I was horrified by this news. I could not, and still can not, believe that someone injured him so badly that his hip actually grew incorrectly. It is beyond my comprehension. His hip will need surgery to repair the damage.

What she did not expect to see was the big white spot on the other leg. What the hell is that, I asked. Please tell me it's not a tumor.

It's not a tumor, she said.

It's a bullet.

Someone shot him when he was just a little puppy.

Someone. Shot. Him.

This dog who runs to everyone he meets with tail wagging - was shot. This dog who sits at my feet waiting for hugs - was abused. This dog who lies on his back on the bed with his head on my shoulder - was mistreated. This dog who allows small children to pull his tail and stick fingers in his nose - was treated cruelly.

He holds no grudges. He feels no self-pity. He loves unconditionally.

He is my inspiration.

And he is where my love resides.

30 comments:

Penelope said...

Oh God I could just cry!
As someone who has rescued more than my fair share of cats and dogs over the years I have NEVER come across that and I hope I never will.
He is a very lucky pup to have found you :o)

Ambitious Blonde said...

I love Riley and he is my hero.

That is all.

East Coast Teacher said...

People who do things like that to sweet animals like Riley should be shot.

The. End.

nicalyse said...

Poor baby! The only positive thing that comes from stories like that are the people like you who then adopt the little puppies and kittens and give them the perfect little life they deserve.

Eric said...

People who pick on animals are the worst type. Hang them by the balls I say!!!

Bone said...

What a cute puppy!!!! I want one now. Can you ask Riley if he had any brothers or sisters? I know he probably won't tell you. Sounds like he may be in the puppy witness protection program.

It's hard for me to fathom the sheer evil that is inside some people.

Melanie was here said...

I am sitting at my desk in tears. Thank God Riley and you found each other. And I hope whoever abused that poor, sweet, innocent puppy is somehow treated just the same.

Sizzle said...

SOMEONE SHOT HIM!?

That makes me SO MAD. And makes me want to cry. WTH is wrong with people!?

I am glad you two are together.

Melliferous Pants said...

That is HORRIFIC! Riley is an adorable dog and I'm so glad that you guys have found each other. It is unbelievable that anyone could be so cruel to a living being.

We had a Doberman Pincher when I was a kid...he had been mistreated for years before he came to us. He would run at the sound of a broom falling over and hide for hours before returning home. And he was the sweetest, kindest, most loyal, gentle dog. He was even great with babies! Poor guy even survived being bitten by a rattlesnake!

Didn't meant to derail from Riley. He is perfect.

Thérèse said...

I am filled with both awe and aww. I'm so glad Riley found a good home, with you.

Princess of the Universe said...

That's awful. I want to send him some toys! And food! And kisses!

Angela said...

That is probably the saddest story I've ever heard. That someone would shoot a PUPPY. If you and he met when he was only seven months old, my lord, his previous owners were certainly inhumane and should be sent to prison. But I'm glad you're taking care of him. All abused animals need new, loving homes. I'm partial to doggies, and when I have my own house, I'll definitely rescue one.

Room Mom Helper said...

Maybe you found each other for dual purposes.

You're helping him, and he's helping you.

Bless you both.

(I am Uber in disguise)

Spinning Girl said...

I wept long, sorowful tears over this story, and over the hurts that are inflicted on the innocent. Thank heaven for you, the soft place where this wonderful creature could land and spend the rest of his days.

flounder said...

I think that I love Riley too.

I also think that whoever hurt Riley should get ass cancer.

mr_g said...

Wow. That was amazing. You are both very luck indeed!

Tim said...

Wow, thats nuts.

Who knew gangsta puppies could be so cute.

yournamehere said...

Previous owner? Dick Cheney.

He's lucky to have you.

sunny said...

This is the beginning of a great love affair. I mean that with all honesty... There are fewer loves more pure than the love of a great dog. I lost both of my girls (terriers) earlier this year and it's as if half of my family is now gone. I'm glad you and Riley found each other and are a family now. These are precious years together, enjoy them and savor those moments. You are so blessed to have each other!
: )

Dan-E said...

now I wanna give riley a big hug. that poor thing.

Nance said...

Poor thing. What a past and what a pity. Thank goodness you rescued him.

jiggs said...

hee hee. i like doggies!

Mone said...

What a sweet looking dog! How could anyone hurt a animal??? I sure hope that whoever did that to this doggy will get his/her punishment! It's so sad. Riley sure is lucky you two met.

egan said...

I really don't understand someone who thinks this is okay. I won't even begin to try to rationalize what must be happening in their mind.

I like that you took a positive spin on how he doesn't hold grudges.

Bill said...

I think Molly can relate, though I don't think the treatment she received at the hands of assholes was nearly as extreme. I'm glad you found Riley and he found you (just as I'm glad Molly and me found each other).

Cesar Milan, the "dog whisperer" (whom some people love and others seem to hate), says a dog lives in the moment so it can get over things and move on much more quickly than humans, which seems to be the case with Molly and, it sounds like, with Riley.

Maybe Molly and Riley should start their own animal rights group and lobby for harsher penalties for animal abuse. I know in Canada, the laws are a joke.

ing said...

Awww, I wish I could have a dog! Your dog is sooooo cute. . . And I have no idea why anyone would shoot a dog, but whoever mistreated Riley is a horrible person.

FRITZ said...

People who hurt animals are the lowest form of people. While I am saddened for Riley's past and ecstatic for his future, I wonder what happened to a person that led him to shoot Riley.

In other words, procreation amongst humans should be as controlled as it is amongst animals.

Courtney said...

Oooooooh, people who hurt animals - and an adorable puppy no less - have a special place in hell. May they be dispatched there quickly.

Thank goodness for people like you who are there to rescue the sweet things and give them loving homes.

Riley is adorable.

Katie said...

Oh my goodness! What a sweet tribute to your adorable new lover! I have two rescued dogs myself, and I can't bear to think of the life they would have lived. Yay to you for rescuing!

www.marriageconfessions.wordpress.com

Anonymous said...

you just made me cry damn you! My puppy is sleeping on the pillow next to me, and I cannot imagine anyone hurting her. Good for you for loving Riley! The love you get back is ten fold :)