Sunday, July 8, 2007

Sad, but typical story here in Saipan

What a sad situation -sad story.

PAWS published a piece in the Saipan Tribune the other day about a rescue attempt of a dog that was dumped at the Airport about 3-4 months ago. We received a call from a TOURIST who spotted the emaciated dog upon her arrival in Saipan.

I knew of the dog's existence, but had completely forgotten about it. Three months ago, I noticed the dog when I was dropped off at the airport to catch a flight. I swore I would take care of it when I got back, but completely forgot with all the other complaints, animals, and issues that continually come up on a daily basis.

So, three months later, PAWS received an email about this female dog living in the airport parking lot.

Look for yourself - she, the rescue dog, is nothing but skin and bones. I hope it can be rescued. I hope someone comes forward and offers to house the dog for 2-3 months while she regains her strength. But, if no one comes forward, the dog will be put to sleep.

In a last ditch effort to find a fostering home for this dog, we published an article in the paper. ONE person responded to our plea for help - ONE person. This one person was a young lady, who obviously has a soft spot for animals.

I typically do a house visit before handing over a foster dog. So, I went by this young lady's house on Saturday to check out the set-up.

While I was at the house, I noticed the family had three dogs: one male and two females. The male was in great condition - beautiful coat, thick waist, with clear eyes. The females had mange, collar rash, and were too thin.

I asked questions about the females, and as it turns out, they are kept chained up because the family doesn't want them to get pregnant. Constantly being chained up causes the collar-rash and/or irritates the mangy skin.

During my inquiry, the dogs' owner asked about spaying the females. "How much would it cost to spay those females - $100?" A series of thoughts went through my head: First, I was shocked that he knew what spaying was. Second, I was delighted that he wanted to do it. Third, I was irritated that the cost of being a responsible pet owner was absurdly out of reach for this gentleman.

"No, it will cost you about $350 per dog." I could see the disappointment in his face. Obviously, $100 was out of the question, but $350 was out completely of the question .

After talking to this man and his family about alternative methods of birth control, I focused on the good looking and well-looked after male.

I asked a series of questions about the male dog, which lead to the story of the male dog's brother. According to the gentleman, the male dog had a brother until 3 days ago when someone stole him. The family says they know who took him, and they know that he has been eaten.

Regardless, they asked that I help them find the dog. "My wife misses the dog. She still cries about him," the man said.

I mentioned a reward would help, and the gentleman said he would offer $50.00 to the person who safely returned the dog.

What a crappy situation for this family - and yet - they are still willing to help the airport dog that is in need. Here, they have two female dogs that they are trying to take care of, but can't afford to do so, and their male dog was recently stolen and possibly eaten.

I often leave these situations wondering WHY we can't help this man be a responsible pet owner. Why can't we host a spay and neuter clinic so this man can get his females spayed? How many other people on the island are like him? How much better would this place be if we helped these people accomplish their pet-goals?

Anyway, if you have information on the dog that was stolen, please contact Dennis Tababa at 234-0148.

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