I'm addressing this
to all humans. I need help! My name is Stella and I'm a purebred dog - what
you'd call a "breeder." I live in a huge high-volume kennel in
Missouri. There are a couple thousand dogs here. I've been here about eight
years (that's human years) and I figure I've had at least two hundred puppies.
Oh, I don't want
to give you the wrong idea...I'm not in any danger, or anything like that.
There are people here who take care of us. They probably each have about a
hundred dogs with litters of puppies to take care of, but they eventually get
around to each of us. I know I get at least one pat on the head per day. I have
a stainless steel cage and there's room enough to lie down and turn around. We
get two meals a day, just dry kibble, and at least the water is clean. They
even have veterinarians who work here. At first it struck us as odd that they
could find people who studied to be doctors and took an oath about
compassionate care of animals to work here, but they did.
But enough about
me, it's my cousin Sadie I'm worried about. You see, I haven't seen her since
we were puppies. We can't write or call of course, but I hear things
occasionally through the "grapevine." Some of the delivery trucks
that take all the puppies from where I am to pet shops also stop at the place
where Sadie is, in Kansas. I hear things...and they worry me.
I've heard Sadie
lives in a cold and drafty barn. That's how it is in the winter, in the summer
time the barn is an oven. The man who runs the place hardly has any help, and
Sadie's in there with a couple hundred dogs. They have their cages up off the
floor with wire bottoms, so that they're easy to hose down, dogs and all
(although I hear they rarely clean them), and I'm afraid that wire must hurt
Sadie's paws. I've also heard the dogs get moldy food once a day, that their
water, if they have it at all, is days old and dirty. Sadie has had even more
puppies than I've had and I've heard about half of them have died.
Poor Sadie! I'm just
heartsick over this and I don't think there's a thing I can do about it. I
expect I'll be here over the next couple of years, and after that, who knows?
But I'd at least like to know how Sadie is, and I know if she were here with me
living in luxury, she'd join me in asking one more question.
If you all have
enough puppies now, do you think we might go home sometime soon? I'm not really
sure what a "home" is, but I hear the people here talk about going
"home" at the end of the day, and they tell me my puppies have all
gone to "homes." I figure me and Sadie might like to try out a
"home" someday and see if it's to our liking.
Any help you can
provide will be greatly appreciated!
Your friend, Stella
From Pieces of My
Copyright © 2002, by Jim Willis
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