Today was a government holiday. I am not sure that really means anything considering the amazing batshit mess that our elected representatives have made of things, but ANYWAY! Today was a government holiday, so I only worked a half day. There was not enough make work to fill a full day.
What I did with the rest of my day was to pick up the saddest little cocker spaniel and take it to the vet.
He was a stray in Catonsville who was found by a compassionate woman. She took him to her vet for a rabies shot, cleaned him up a little, treated his dry eye, but could not keep him as she is laid off from her job and already has two dogs of her own.
I think I know why Nero (I named him) was an abandoned stray. His teeth are about rotted out of his head and he stinks of decay. He has dry eye, and has this thing, this growth on his muzzle near his right eye. Whatever it is, it is very unpleasant looking, wet and sticky and wrinkled and crusting over.
Right now he is at the vet where they are making a decision about what can be done with the growth and his teeth. Tomorrow Nero may be a toothless emperor.
After I left him I sat in the car for a few minutes and wrestled with a terrible rage. Nero didn't get in this state overnight. He had a red collar on, but no tags, so he "belonged" to someone. Someone who didn't care for him. Someone who let him live with crusty, dry eyes (painful), infected ears (painful), untrimmed nails (painful) and rotten teeth (painful), when most of those things could have been treated easily and not too expensively. What is wrong with people? Who lets an animal live in pain if there is something they can do to help it?
I have to keep reminding myself that yes, the world is a terribly broken place, full of people doing awful things to each other. There is so much pain, casual cruelty, and I can fall into such feelings of despair about it. But that doesn't do anything to make the world better. Doing anything, even the little things I am capable of doing, does help push back the dark. Enough good people doing little acts of kindness helps a lot.
But I am still just so angry about casual cruelty to animals. It is like people hurting children...hurting anything that is small, weak, and powerless just makes me sick.