A “Tail” of Resignation: Pirate’s Plight


This holiday season is bright in many ways. Homes are decorated with sparkling icicles and flickering lights. Children are dreaming of waking up on Christmas Day and finding that treasure they have longed for.

But the reality for one sweet soul at the Newland Street Humane Society in Huntington Beach is a cold, concrete pen.

This little guy has spent many long months at the shelter and I have written two stories about Pirate hoping that someone very special would open their home and heart to welcome him in.


We have, or rather had a routine. He would jump up and down happily when I’d take him out for a stroll and we both savored our petting sessions while sitting on the curb of the Edison access Road. He would put his cheek next to mine and close his eyes while I told him how beautiful he is. He always sighed with contentment.

From his little snaggletoothed smile to his shiny, soft black fur, the special quality that made him stand out was his happy personality.

Finally, a few months ago, Pirate was adopted. He had a home and I breathed a sigh of relief. After all, this little survivor deserved a warm bed and a lap to call his own.

Two weeks ago while looking at the list of available dogs, the night before I was going to volunteer, I was dismayed to see Pirate’s photo again on the list of available dogs.

The worst-case scenario had happened. Our boy was returned.

Now, I have to say that he was overjoyed to see me and some of the other people at the shelter, but I know that he thought it was just going to be a temporary visit and he would soon be back home.

Fast forward a few weeks and he realizes that he was no longer wanted. He is not joyful but rather resigned.

He sits with me at the curb midway through our walk and stares away into space. Is he remembering how wonderful it was to have a home, even if it was just temporary? I don’t know.

Often I see dogs go into a deep depression while in confinement, but not so with our little buccaneer. I can honestly say that he is trying to deal with his plight by doing what is required of him. But the joy isn’t there anymore and I am very concerned.

I don’t know why he was returned, because as far as I can see, he is a perfect little gentleman. Not a fancy purebred, but a noble dog of mixed heritage with great potential.

Please consider helping Pirate find his way home for Christmas


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Having lived these good many years, (71 to be exact), has given me the opportunity to reflect on what I value most. Family, good friends, and the precious pets that have shared my life  have enriched me as a person. I’ve evaluated what is most important to me and what lessons I’ve learned, and what I’ve determined is that I want to leave this world a better place for having lived here. It is one of my deepest desires to be able to help those who have no voice — because animals have always played an important role in my life. They were constant friends when the world around me was changing.  One, (a small parakeet named Petie), accompanied me when as a child my family moved across country twice, (New York to California and back again)-I can still see Petie in his small travel cage sitting on my lap as I explained to him where we were stopping for the night and feeling that his company as well as my dear parents were all I needed to feel safe and secure. My pets were with me in good times and bad, often being the consistent non-judgmental voice my heart needed. Although I spent my working years as a commercial artist, both teaching the craft at a local college and in my own studio, it seems that in my later years it is by painting with words that I am now able to reach out to people, and it is my joy to do just that. I hope my stories help to connect people to kindred souls that wear fur on their faces but are just as capable as we are to feel great love in their hearts.  Rescue animals particularly deserve another chance at a happy life and it is my honor to bring their stories to light and hopefully be the catalyst that joins two different species on their journey. The connection we share with our pets is like no other, There is no need to be anything other than who and what you are. No amount of money or privilege will impress them as much as your kindness and attention. I do know that in the final analysis, life is good and most people honestly want to do the right thing. If that includes opening their home and heart to another living being, then my purpose is accomplished. I hope in some small way I can contribute to that greater good. Bio- Born in Middle Village, New York- 1945 Mother to a wonderful son, Michael who truly would be a cherished friend even if we weren't related--and fortunate in meeting my kind and thoughtful soulmate, Burt, in later life- I am blessed indeed. Retired teacher/ Orange Coast College/ former owner and operator of a commercial art business in Huntington Beach, California.
 Lucky to have had the opportunity to work in the art field where I was often quoted as saying, "You mean I am being paid for something I love to do?!"

 Interests: travel, enjoying local points of interest, movies, volunteering at the Newland Animal Shelter and writing about the wonderful personalities I have been honored to meet there, both human and furry-faced, and generally enjoying the retired life.


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