Sunday, September 9, 2007

who let the dogs out?

We finally got a cat to go with the house. We've been talking about it for a while, but one of us was always traveling, and then we had to figure out which shelter to use. (Everyone recommends West End, a no-kill shelter, but considering that we wanted a middle-aged cat, not an adorable kitten, it seemed more virtuous to save our cat from a kill shelter.)

Last weekend we went down to the Inland Valley Humane Society and Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and checked out the offerings. We selected a likely candidate, but he had just been arraigned and still had to serve out his sentence -- so I went down yesterday to pick him up.

The pound is packed in saturday mornings. It took me about two hours to get him, and I already had the application filled out and everything. Most of the time was spent waiting and watching. I got to see dozens of people bring in animals that they couldn't handle or keep (lots of moving to new apartments, lots of behavior problems), plus some strays that folks had trapped. And lots of newborn kittens, beyond measure. Often people brought in a shoebox of kittens with their eyes still shut, and I'm guessing that they just put them down immediately, rather than nursing them to health.

I also got to see a happy ending and a grand mal tantrum. One guy was bringing in his rottweiler for adoption, because he was being transferred overseas. The guy was just about in tears about losing her (her name was Rosie). A little earlier, a guy came in looking for his dog, who had escaped (days before), and he had just been told that he was too late -- they'd put the dog down. He too was almost in tears. You can guess what happened: Rottweiler guy told Euthanasia guy how wonderful his dog was, and Rosie went home with Euthanasia guy. The staff were all glowing with happiness.

The tantrum was another thing entirely. I never did figure out what this guy was trying to do, but he wanted to get the licensing records on his neighbor's dog, and the staff wouldn't give them out. The guy completely blew his top, starting out with "You don't know who you're messing with" and "I'm friends with the mayor of Rialto" (response: "Not in our catchment area, sir") and ending with the phrase "You fucking pet Nazis" -- at which point a security officer appeared at his elbow and escorted him out, saying quietly, "We don't allow anyone to call people Nazis here." Go, pound!

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