Pound Pooch

diary of a shelter worker.


day of the dead

The other day, nothing quite seemed to be going right. In the same way that Dia de los Muertos has a macabre, almost comical feeling, this day had just that kind of odd, through-a-distorted-mirrors, not quite funny, but too strange to be real aura.

A man brought in a kitten that couldn't move its legs. It had a horrible eye infection, and was essentially dying in the cardboard box he was sitting in. It was one of the most pitiful things I had ever seen. He was put to sleep as most humane.

A woman carried in a pigeon. We don't normally deal with wildlife, but this pigeon wasn't exactly alive. She said she had seen a hawk knock the smaller bird out of the sky. It was moving when she picked it up and rushed it in. He was dead when we received him, stiff, with his head still upright.

At the end of the day, a woman brought in a cat that had drowned in her pool, still sopping wet. She said she had heard a cat fight the night before and feared this might be an abandoned cat she had been feeding for a year. Her children won't get within 10 feet of the pool. I untied the bag and tried to figure out what kind of cat it was, for identification purposes. The cat was on its back, legs straight in the air. Dripping chlorinated water.

Each of these isolated deaths had their own small tragedy, like a small Mexican skeleton with a violin, and were, in their own small way, memorialized like a little sugar skull.


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