Seen a man standin over a dead dog lyin by the highway in a ditch
He's lookin down kinda puzzled pokin that dog with a stick
Got his car door flung open he's standin out on highway 31
Like if he stood there long enough that dogd get up and run.
Dog bit small boy in the hand and arms in a lunging unprovoked attack. Took dog out behind the barn. Shot dog. It slumped dead, dead dogs not having a gender left to talk of. But that's not how it happened, of course.
I read obituaries, because I don’t expect to live long and I want to know how it’s done, the dying of it. This is an obituary. Of sorts. How to treat the dog you’re going to euthanize (or, So Fuck It We’re Going To Kill The Dog).
I know all dogs go to heaven but do they have a sense of it first? I know dogs can be cowed and made afraid, but do they have moments of existential dread good for only pure weeping? Do they have a sense, I’m asking, of their own mortality? When at the vets for something routine to do with kennel cough or distemper, do they smell the sulphorous odors, the vile secrets that invisibly emit from the killing jars? Do they sense Dogs die here. This is where people bring us, the cowards, and ask another to do the dirtiest work…..this is where the butcher and the doctor live in a single self, hiding the ugly former behind the sanctimonious skirts of the latter....
Dog bit boy. Big dog bit boy. Boy survived with hand punctures and screaming. Small fingers, large jaws. On the drive home from the emergency room, so many hours later, boy finally from shock and exhaustion, fell into a dead sleep. The father driving, the mother weeping. Three days would go by before the unsaid thoughts of that moment would become a guilty but certain agreement: Kill the dog. And now she sleeps at my feet. Locked away from all else and harm, high up in this attic office. Happy, I imagine.
We have an excellent vet. Very lovely and serious and moral and good. We explained the nature of the big dog's ways. A matter I will not spend time on here. Suffice to say the vet offered that we had a difficult but essential choice to make. All the other steps were taken. The rescue leagues were contacted but demurred. There was to be no other way. I love this perverse dog, but I cannot police her or save my child from her. Selfishly, I am still scarred by having to put our awfully sick old Bichon down a couple of years back. Deja is right; people who don't bawl when they put their pets down are missing a piece that most humans have. But still.
I bought some steak a while ago. Good stuff for a special dinner. Took it out of the freezer yesterday and I'm going to make this big old grumpy girl of mine a fine meal of it tonight. A last cigarette.
Tomorrow, in the morning.