Sunday, April 7, 2013

Final Words on Scout

That's the last picture I took of my boy right before we loaded him on the train and sent him towards his new home. I have had a very heavy heart, and I think I'll miss him for a long time and remember him always. I kept the collar we found him with (he had outgrown it anyways) and now my teddy bear wears it, along with the collars of other dogs who have had special significance in my life, and a tuft of hair from a dog who's collar wasn't mine to keep. Each one of them has helped me become the person I am, and so I remember them this way.
I received a lot of flack from a lot of people over letting him go. People here, and on my facebook page, and people in "real life". Trust me, I was harder on myself than any of you were. Technically the landlord tenant act should have protected us, but it wasn't a chance we could afford to take in a town with incredibly limited rental spaces. The only rentals in town, (and we looked into it, believe me) are owned by the same doodlebop who owns our unit, or are a shared accommodation type of arrangement. We agreed that we don't want to start our married life with room mates. I have had to share kitchen space with someone else all my life so far, and for once, it was really important to me have my own. Also, not many people are willing to let you move in with a destructive 3 month old puppy. There is housing available through the health unit for staff, and as a part timer, Andrew wasn't guaranteed housing, but he could have applied for it anyways. We looked at the fine print though, and you're not allowed to operate a business out of their housing. That means I couldn't do massage. That just won't work either. We even looked into buying a home. Even though the only places available up here at the moment aren't exactly dream houses, it would be our own place where we would have been free to do whatever we wanted, and be able to keep our puppy. Unfortunately we're about 2 years away from being able to even afford a 5% downpayment at the rate we're going now, and don't have the credit score to let us borrow a down payment from a line of credit or some such. That's really risky business anyhow and I'm glad we didn't try to go down that road. We really had to make the choice we made, but it still hurt to make it.
Yesterday, I got some news from his new people though, and it has me feeling much better about the decision. Scout is keeping his name, and now lives with two other huskies, on an 8.5 acre property outside of New Liskeard. His owner loves winter sports and goes skijoring and scootering with his other two dogs. He's already getting Scout used to the idea of wearing a harness and dragging a light stick or plastic bag on a leash behind him. Which is exactly what I was going to do with him, so this makes me happy. The best news of all though, was that he'd taken Scout to the vet. He tested positive for parvovirus, but they caught it fairly soon and he's being successfully treated and expected to make a 100% recovery. If we had kept Scout up here, the only thing we could have done was encourage fluids and watch as he worsened through intense diarrhea and vomitting and hope and pray that his little immune system would see him through the natural course of the virus without him becoming too dehydrated. It would have been terrifying, and we might have lost him. I'm so glad that he's in a place where he can receive the care he needs. It was an important lesson. He will have a great life, and when we are ready to get a dog again, I will make sure we take one in right before a mobile vet comes up, or we head south.
In some ways, life is hard up here. I'm glad this lesson wasn't any harder than it had to be.

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