Thursday, August 6, 2009

O That I Were A Superhero

Took a bike ride this afternoon along the lakefront. Enjoyed the scenic route until I spotted a bewildered dog in the road. 

A roller-blader ahead of me called to it, but it didn't hear her. It was frantically looking every direction, trying to figure out which way to go. My husband and I dropped our bikes and while I locked them up, he went after the dog. 

Then a fellow approached me. He seemed to be looking for something, so I asked him if he was looking for his dog. He said yes but the dog wasn't his; he'd just happened to notice it back at a hardware store (this guy must have been following the dog for some distance because the nearest hardware store was blocks away). I told him the dog was headed west and the young man took off running.

By the time I'd bumbled with the bikes and got across the first two intersections, both the young man and my husband were coming back my way. The dog was nowhere in sight. It had run west into the city grid and miles of traffic, alleys, and roadways.  

My husband and I have rescued a number of animals over the years—dogs, cats, birds, squirrels, one bat, and one rat. But in each case we were able to corner the animals in a relatively confined area. Today we were outmatched.

I only hope that, like so many other dogs have been known to do, this one followed a scent to a dog boutique or groomer in the neighborhood where it would get help. I don't have an iPhone, but I wondered if perhaps there was an app that allowed you to take a photo of a pet on the lam, cite the cross streets where you saw it, and the direction it was headed plus any descriptive information that might prove helpful. Then the app would send that info to local shelters, police stations, and national pet-finding organizations. It would start a trail on the animal that could be added to as various iPhone users came across the creature. (If there is such an app, then I can finally justify purchasing an iPhone.)

I can't stop thinking about that poor golden-hued canine and how terrified it looked. Big dogs have a harder time getting sympathy from city-dwellers. Let's hope this big dog approaches that one unusual individual who cares enough to be kind to it.

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