It’s a dog-eat-dog world out there
Updated: December 18, 2011 8:13AM
My name is Lily and I was in a glass box when she found me. I lost track of how long I had been in the shelter. No sense of hours, minutes or seconds that I was put on display; just an auctioned object that no one was willing to pay a price for — except her. The first time I saw her, I lifted my dreary head and my brown eyes met hers. That’s when I knew: my next mission in life would be to take care of this girl until my last day on this earth.
Four years after my first encounter with my dog, Lily, I have learned more from this quadrupedal creature than any scholarly lesson. Here’s my assessment:
Why does it hurt so bad after the last visit with the vet when we come home with a clay paw and the infamous “Rainbow Bridge” poem dangling in our hand? Long after the pet has left this planet, it doesn’t just feel like your best friend was euthanized, but a sliver of yourself. It’s because animals — more specifically dogs — signify your raw being.
Think about it. After I come home from an exhausting day of work, who’s there waiting for me? Lily. She has probably spent the entire day thinking about the moment I would cross the threshold again. When I come home, she is non-judgmental. She doesn’t care about what I’m wearing, how much money I have, if I lost my job, or where I went to college. She only cares about the undiluted core of my being. She only cares about the fact that I am there to spend my time with her.
That’s the thing about dogs. They don’t look too much into anything. You buy your dog a brand new toy and let’s face it, that $2 ball is just as fantastic as the $2 ball you bought last week. The ball doesn’t need to be bigger and it doesn’t need to be designer. It’s the same ball and your dog will carry the same enthusiasm, because a dog is grateful for anything. It is not expecting anything out of life.
Ironically, at times it is humans that carry more animalistic behaviors than the animals themselves. Here we are training our dogs, when in reality, maybe we should take a lesson from our dogs. We snarl and snap at each other and we insist on bigger and better toys on a consistent basis. We can’t seem to except each other without predisposed notions or unpolluted thoughts of judgment. Why can’t we find the enthusiasm for the simplistic things in life, like our dogs?
When I saved Lily from the shelter, I wasn’t just saving her, she was saving me. When I feel like the world has absolutely failed me, I look into those big brown eyes and she understands. Though her speech centers differ from mine and she scientifically doesn’t understand the complexity of human language, she still manages to understand an unspoken truth.
She senses my pain and becomes my biggest supporter during stagnant times. Yet, she engulfs any sort of zest or excitement in life and she carries it throughout her day-to-day life; forgetting that she was ever locked up in a glass box. She doesn’t wear her scars and neither should we.
Alyssa Samson is from Indian Head Park