Passing the Buck

This is a bit of a rant, but I need to get it off my chest.

We found out today that a neighbour was taken into hospital yesterday afternoon, but it is unclear exactly why as she is a heavy drinker and smoker, and also has an array of medical issues. On top of that, she does not have a good relationship with any of her neighbours, including us, although we are sorry to hear she is poorly. The problem is her dog.

We have had ‘dealings’ with her dog, in that it barks at night when she forgets to let him in, and he also makes a row of deposits when passing which she rarely clears up. She has no family local, and although a friend has a key, they are not in a position to look after her dog, even though they did some some years ago.
So the situation is that the lady is in hospital and will be some time apparently, and the dog is in the house on its own.
The dog is elderly, not house trained or neutered, and does not get on well with other dogs.
There is no-one to look after it.

As we understand it, the hospital should be aware of this as notified to them by the ambulance crew who took her in, and have contacts for such scenarios and animal welfare.
The friend has been left holding not only the keys, but responsibility for sorting out the dog. This is not right. Phone calls to the local police and RSPCA were basically a matter of various holding times, options and no support, and boarding kennels would not take him not only because they want £15 a night, but he hasn’t had his vaccinations for years.
The local animal rescue have not responded to a message left for assistance, but a call to the hospital to enquire as to the lady’s status resulted in a nurse saying she would contact their support agencies and get something sorted.
Except that person cannot find anywhere to take the dog. The RSPCA did say that should the dog be left on its own for 24 hours, then they would become involved. This looks like it will be the solution if the matter can’t be resolved today.

I know what you’re thinking.
As dog lovers looking for another dog, why don’t we offer to take him.
If we knew the neighbour better, perhaps, but we don’t and our interaction with her has not been ‘comfortable’ and amounts to three encounters in the four years we’ve been here.

If we knew the dog and the dog knew us, perhaps. We don’t even know his name.

He is not house trained, and we will not allow our home to be a canine toilet. By all accounts her home is in a disgusting mess,  which of course is not the dog’s fault, but if that is what it’s used to, can you imagine how it would act elsewhere?

But most importantly and above all else, we have so many commitments with our own health matters,  we couldn’t, even if we wanted to.

About pensitivity101

I am a retired number cruncher with a vivid imagination and wacky sense of humour which extends to short stories and poetry. I love to cook and am a bit of a dog whisperer as I get on better with them than people sometimes! We have recently lost our beloved dog Maggie who adopted us as a 7 week old pup in March 2005. We decided to have a photo put on canvas as we had for her predecessor Barney, and now have three pictures of our fur babies on the wall as we found a snapshot of my GSD so had hers done too. From 2014 to 2017 'Home' was a 41 foot narrow boat where we made strong friendships both on and off the water. We were close to nature enjoying swan and duck families for neighbours, and it was a fascinating chapter in our lives. We now reside in a small bungalow on the Lincolnshire coast where we have forged new friendships and interests.
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27 Responses to Passing the Buck

  1. What a sad story. You have made the only decision you can make, which is to keep yourselves distant from it. The tragedy is, this poor dog ended up in the worst possible home he could have ended up in — through no fault of his own — and is now paying the worst possible price for it.

  2. Another example that people need contingency plans for their pets. They also need to be nice to neighbors who would be willing to help. Poor pup. Hope it gets resolved.

    • I know. When Kela went back to her owner, we put a card on her notice board with Emergency Kela Care on it.
      It has our name, address and phone number on it. We’re in touch every day, but in case of an emergency, she would know Kela
      would be cared for which takes half the stress off. Poor pup indeed, and I hope they can find someone to take him in.

  3. Marsha says:

    This is so sad and irresponsible.

  4. John Holton says:

    Di, it’s not your problem. I know you worry about the dog (even though he is a stinker), but you said someone has the keys and knows the situation. You have no reason to feel guilty about washing your hands of it.

  5. 247paulgray says:

    Over the years we have met a lot of owners who treat their dogs abysmally BUT that’s between them and their dog. While some of us love animals, there is a time when you have to draw a line you are NOT going to cross. Not only for animals but also people.

  6. Unfortunately for the dog you are not required nor should you be expected to take over care. It is unfortunate but it cannot become one citizen’s problem. When I used to work with children and their parents about poor behavior and how to deal with it I used to say that letting them get away with poor behavior does nothing but put them in a bad position should they need care by anyone else. It is the parents responsibility to try their best to teach their children what is acceptable in real life. It is the same with a pet. Who would want a cat that pees everywhere or a bird that flies around a house dropping poops everywhere? It’s really on the owner and no one else at this point except for the authorities.

  7. murisopsis says:

    Very sad. This is exactly why my in-laws have not taken on the responsibility for another pet… If there was a family emergency, it would fall to us to take care of the pet and they don’t want to place that responsibility on anyone!

  8. I understand your angst, as a dog lover too. But you have your hands full. I hope it gets settled soon.

  9. Carol anne says:

    thats a sad situation! But I don’t blame you for not taking the dog. I mean, especially since its not house trained. That would be an awful mess and you would have a lot on your hands cleaning up after it. XX

  10. I loathe people like that. I ‘get’ that she’s lonely and probably the dog provides comfort that obviously she doesn’t want nor seek from other humans, but geeuz. What about the dog? Does that awful woman even give a thought to it? Her circumstances could be my own (not with the dog mess in the house, nor the passive aggressive hostility she exhibits), but in that I don’t have a back up plan if that did happen to me. What would Ziggy do?

    I have my dear neighbor who would take him in or come in and make sure he’s taken care of, she has three cats though, and one of them is elderly and Ziggy and that cat don’t get on.

    I wouldn’t allow my sibling who lives nearby to care for a plant, much less a pet of mine. He proved unworthy long ago, when my totally spoiled and pampered house dog was banished to live in the garage of their home while I was away on vacation. He was properly house trained, and he was a friendly dog, but my S-I-L was mortally afraid of him having an ‘accident’ on her rug. My lovely boy cried every night to be let in, because he was used to sleeping with me (I didn’t expect them to let him on their bed or anything). I was furious when I found out and I’ve never trusted my brother since with care of my pets.

    When Ziggy is gone, however lonely and painful it is, I’m not getting another dog exactly for the reasons you’ve listed with your neighbor’s dog. I’m so glad that someone stepped up and took the poor thing in. I do hope they keep him too, and that your neighbor goes into care or something where she’s looked after.

    • It is good that something has been sorted for the dog. As for her, she has a carer go in every day, but from what we’ve heard, it would appear she doesn’t seem to do much as regards clean. Today she didn’t want to know about the dog, so I am glad that he is going to be looked after properly in a home, and not put in kennels.
      Oh Melanie, your poor baby! When we had Kela for the week, she slept in the bedroom with me. It was reassuring to hear dog snores again. Hard to believe Maggie’s been gone 11 months.

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