5.12.2012

husband says I have a big heart

This last week was not an easy one.
This last week I felt a lot of love. And a lot of pain.
And all because of these four-legged friends that I find myself loving more and more every day. Who knew that was even possible?
Today is Saturday. Today Sherman and I will go to the dog park like every other Saturday. Sherm will run around with all the other loved and well-cared-for dogs. They will play chase and fetch and have a grand ole' time. And I will put a smile on my face and do my best to do the same.
But, I knew I could not go to the dog park today without first writing something about the little guy who has been on my mind non-stop for the last week.
The little guy who stole the hearts of thousands in just a few short days.
snootyphoto
Tuesday morning I read a fellow blogger’s post, introducing me to an unforgettable dog that had been so badly tortured and starved that he was now {then} fighting for his life.
His name was Walter.
I immediately fell head first into this story and Sherman and I began to pray for Walter every single night. Sherm laid on his bed, which is at the foot of our bed, while I rubbed his head and prayed.
When I was a little girl, my mom used to tell me that life is not fair.
I still don't get it.
Why does Sherman get to sleep on extra soft beds, eat salmon dog food and go on fun trips to the dog park? Why was Walter abused and tortured for quite possibly all of his life, just to be thrown out of a moving vehicle and left to die?
snootyphoto
Walter passed away yesterday morning.
I was one of the first facebook followers to read about it.

I do not understand humans.
I do not understand why life is so unfair.

I keep telling myself that all I can do is be a good provider to Sherman. All I can do is pray for all the other animals who suffer. But, I will never truly believe that I am doing enough.
And I still ask why. Why do I have to care so much?

Husband says it’s because I have a big heart.
Well gosh darnit. I don’t want a big heart anymore.
Big hearts hurt. I hurt.

But, I will continue to feel this pain because I care.
And I love these animals more than anything. And I think they deserve our love.

Maybe someday I will have the guts and courage to do more.
Maybe someday I will have the resources to do more.
Until then, I will continue to remember Walter.
And Sherman and I will continue to pray for all the Walters out there.

46 comments:

  1. Bless poor Walters heart, makes me soo angry someone could ever hurt a baby like that. There is a special place in hell for those jerks. There is a big story going through my town of a dog who looks like he got the snot beat out of him by animal control. I've never seen so many angry people here. It's amazing the way dogs turn into a member of the family. Give Sherman extra lovins' today.

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  2. I'm with you, Tiff. The husband's cousin used to go to a shelter and walk dogs who were caged. She couldn't take them all home (3 of her own), so she dropped in every weekend and took them for long walks. I loved that. Poor Walter. Why is it that it is easier to understand dogs than stupid humans who abuse them?

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  3. It's hard- I've had many "Walters" in my life, and wanted to protect them all from the evils of the world. We've volunteered, fostered, adopted... and it's never enough. I try my best to be an advocate for animals, acting like a broken record in scorning any joke about animal abuse, praising adoption, and encouraging spaying and neutering- in fact, my dog's two biological sisters were euthanized at the shelter because, after two months, no one adopted them. We went and visited/walked them weekly after we adopted Max, but knew that we couldn't, as newlywed 22 year olds, have four dogs. I keep their pictures as a reminder, and will show them to anyone who says they "just want [their dog or cat] to have one litter, to experience it..." The next level of unwanted/unloved animals is, sadly, abuse. It's horrifying and it's everywhere. I'll just share my M.O.- for every Walter that breaks your heart, find a Fiona to cry happy tears: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJkZXh9v_i4&feature=player_embedded . *hugs to you and Sherman*

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  4. OMWord so sad...My heart hurts for dogs like that too, and for any animal who doesn't have a home. Ugh, it's just not fair. Just glad Walter didn't have to suffer any more than he did. :(

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  5. I don't understand why people can be so cruel to an animal. They didn't do nothing wrong. They sure as hell didn't ask to be brought into this world... or to be treated so horribly. I am not an animal person, so therefor I won't own an animal. (Not saying I would do this but I will get to my point). If these people don't want a dog to take care of... easy... give it to someone who WILL want it... or DON'T get one at all!!!

    Plain and simple.

    RIP little buddy. That's just horrible.

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  6. That is so sad. I hadn't heard the latest Walter update. I don't understand how anybody could do such things to a harmless creature that just wants to be loved.

    I'm thankful that Walter spent his last days on Earth receiving unlimited love, attention, and affection. I'm glad people's eyes were opened to this story. But I'm so, so very sad that this one does not have a happy ending.

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  7. That's horrible! The only explanation I can give is that people who hurt animals have no heart or no conscience. That's the only one that makes sense. I don't know what I would ever do if I lost any one of my dogs. I just love them so much!

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  8. OMG brought me to tears. It's so hard to imagine that people have this much cruelty in them. Thank you for sharing. RIP Walter. :(

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  9. This is so incredibly sad. I find myself asking the same question, why? Why are some dogs so lucky? What did these innocent animals ever do to inflict such harm and abuse? Some people are monsters. Walter was very lucky to have you praying for him. Having a big heart, especially for animals, is a beautiful thing. Don't ever forget that.

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  10. Oh my goodness this has brought me to tears. RIP Walter.Its so frustrating to think about why and how people can be capable of this kind of hate. I'll be hugging my pets close today.

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  11. That was so awful and so unjust what happened to Walter. I think people like you are much needed in this world. If everyone would take action and not turn away when they see an injustice going on in front of them things like this would not happen as often. I often pray for these unloved and not cared for animals. I'm a huge animal lover as well, but I will keep doing my part and it's so awesome to hear of others like you who are doing the same thing.

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  12. So sad & I'm so glad you have such a big heart! I would like to throw the lowlife that did that to Walter out of a moving vehicle.

    I live in Louisville, & we had a dog who was thrown off of the bridge into the Ohio river. A waitress at one of the restaurants on the river found the dog & took her in. She named her Sunny. Now Sunny is a local celebrity, healthy and loved. The waitress, Kelsey, started an organization called Saving Sunny to help other abused animals.

    http://www.savingsunnyinc.org/

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  13. Dearest Tiff,

    Your heart for Walter is my heart for every kid in that situation. I can't save them all...and wonder if I've been the best for my own kiddos.

    And then there is the blind one-eyed kink-tailed cat that makes me sneeze...and who has kept me from moving to two outstanding apartments/homes that I can better afford...because she is. And now she is in my lap while I write this, missing your mum & friends; Madi as her 21st nears, and Kenan as he drives home from his freshman year of college.

    It makes me think, that if we are lucky enough to invite them in, they will take care of us as much as we try to feed them kibble and give them a good home.

    They give us a good home, too.

    (I'm so sorry for Walter, but I do love your good heart.)

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  14. Praying for all the Walters with you AND praying for you!! God's gonna use that big heart of yours!!!!!

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  15. Big hearts aren't a bad thing, Tiff. They make you stronger and they make your insides beautiful. I hadn't heard about Walter until reading this post, but it touched me, especially that you felt so strongly enough to blog about it. Sherman is a lucky lucky dog to have you as his owner and what you can do to honor Walter is to just keep taking care of Sherman like he's the most important dog in the world. Keep your head up, you're doing good things :)

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  16. Oh my, this broke my heart. You have such a sweet heart and I know that all of your prayers were heard. I am a dog lover through and through and I hate hate hate to see dogs in pain, I just can't take it. Sherman is a lucky pup!

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  17. Aww I read this post about Walter too and my heart hurt so, so bad for him. I cannot believe he passed away, how heartbreaking :.( My prayers are with all of the Walters out there, hopefully they find a home where someone will love them.

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  18. Oh man, this really breaks my heart and gets me pretty emotional. I just can't bear to see dogs abused and abandoned and hurt, and will never understand how ANYONE can look at such a cute little face and do anything to harm him/her.

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  19. That is just so sad.. I do not understand the world sometimes xx

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  20. Oh geez, this makes my heart hurt. Like you, I wish we could do so much more than we can. My step mother in law told me once that you can't save them all, and that sucks so bad. But we have to remember that we have Sherman and Sammy and we're certainly doing something by them.

    Poor Walter. :( :(

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  21. omg, literally my eyes are watering up right now. I really wish the people who do this could switch places and see how it feels. I can understand people hurting people, they can fight back. Animals can't.

    The husband and I have been pushing around the idea of adopting another dog, i'm not sure we have the room, but we have the heart for it. This may just be the final push we needed, reading this story.

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  22. So terribly sad-- but it is never a burden to have a big heart. The world could stand to use a few more people like you. xoxo

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  23. That is really sad. I currently have 2 rescues, 1 severely abused chihuahua (won't be specific) and one pug that was a stray for long enough that she needed to gain 1/3 of her body weight still when we adopted her (she had recently had pups - think puppy mill - and had an infected uterus and the worst ear infections my vet had ever seen). I don't understand what would compel someone to torture or neglect an animal. Volunteer at a shelter, donate to a local rescue (even leashes, dog food, etc helps) or serve as a foster (I've done that as well), it can be rewarding. It is impossible to save them all, but you can make a difference, even one dog at a time.

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  24. This post makes me tear up :( Like you, I am a huge dog lover and it breaks my heart to hear about situation like Walter. My dogs are treated so well, and sometimes I feel guilty that they live in the lap of luxury, while others aren't as fortunate. Hug Sherman extra tight tonight!

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  25. you do have a big heart. it's beautiful, tiff.

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  26. beautiful post! sad to hear about this story. :( i'm a dog lover as well.

    andrea brionne @thedailyeverythings.blogspot.com

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  27. I live local to this story, and it makes me so angry. Animals are such a blessing to our lives and should be treated as such. Our dogs are heavily spoiled and loved, and it saddens me that many dogs don't receive the same treatment. I am so thankful for big hearted people like you and those who helped Walter. I am glad that during his final days he received the love and compassion he deserved all along. RIP sweet boy, your story touched us all.

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  28. TIff, your heart is kind, it is so kind- I trust it, completely. My relative stranger- yet dear friend.

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  29. Sweet Walter deserved so much more & now God is giving that to him. There are soo many awful humans out there that treat our sweet four legged friends like property and not the amazing creatures they are.

    Moving post - big hearts are great things!

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  30. This story is heartbreaking. Sherman is very lucky to have a good mommy like you!

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  31. So terrible. I just don't understand how people can be so cruel to animals. Those same people abuse humans too I'm sure.

    I read a story a few weeks ago about a Golden Retriever up here in Washington that was practically beaten to death and then tied up with barbed wire. He barely made it. Who would harm a sweet Golden Retriever? So terrible.

    Sherman is lucky to have a great mom like you!

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  32. You really do have a big heart and that is priceless. I really feel for Walter. My own pup is a rescue that was found wandering the streets of New Mexico after going through who knows what. I am so thankful that now he is happy and well taken care of. It is so incredibly fulfilling. Just by bringing attention to this you are helping....Keep it up!

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  33. Oh my. This story is very heartbreaking. Anyway, I'm a dog lover a well and I'm glad to know that you are too. :)

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  34. Oh, that is SO sad. I hate that people think they can treat their pets in such a way. It's just horrible.

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  35. You DO have a big heart and that is a wonderful thing! I wanted to share with you an organization that helps prevent cruelty to animals and children. It is a great non-profit that does so much for the rights of these tiny victims. Like you said, you may not have the resources to do too much but at least being aware of organizations out there and educating yourself on ways to help is always a good start. Thank you for sharing this post and I will also say a prayer for all of the "Walters" out there.

    http://www.americanhumane.org/

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  36. Found your blog from Breakfast with Tiffany. This is such a sad story. I really can't understand why people abuse innocent animals. I just found out my neighbor was beating his dog and it makes me sick.

    -Sharon
    The Tiny Heart

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  38. I hadn't heard about Walter but I COMPLETELY understand how you feel and it's so sad that he had to suffer. My fiance and I adopted a dog at the end of January that had suffered severe mistreatment for all of his life. I won't go into details on here about all he's been through (at least what we know about) but when we got him he was going blind, going deaf, had a mouth full of rotten teeth, could barely walk because his legs were so stiff, was at least 9 years old...and the list goes on. He needed a good home and even though we weren't looking for another pet (we are already parents to a 16 year old cat), we couldn't get him out of our minds. We adopted him, had all of his teeth removed, had cataract surgery done on his left eye (his right eye wasn't a candidate), have given him a loving home, and have even gotten him to run. People tell us all the time how lucky he is to have us but we feel like the lucky ones!!! Being able to give Sherman a good life is a beautiful thing and it also means there is one less dog in the world that could have potentially been suffering. We need more awareness about pet abuse and we need more people like you with BIG HEARTS! So go on, hug Sherman a little tighter, give him an extra treat, and know that there is nothing wrong with having a big heart.

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  39. I am sick to my stomach. I read too much about animal abuse and it kills me. Only in Chicago its often about suffering pups involved in dog fights. Its awful, makes me want to go to the Southside and find all of the dogs involved and save each and every one of them.

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  40. I catching up on blogs and come to this. My heart swells and my eyes fall with tears again! Thank you Tiff for being a voice for Walter too! For sharing his story! Our hearts will be stronger for our furry friends because of him

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  41. Love the simplicity of your blog and the similarities we have - specifically that we are both suckers for four-legged humans ;) Your post inspires me to do more for those less fortunate creatures. You can find me @

    www.eternally-red.blogspot.com

    Thanks!!

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  42. This breaks my heart. I love how much you love. :)

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  43. Yes, I am totally back-creeping on your blog and falling in love. And YES, I am sitting at work right now sobbing like an idiot. :'( I don't understand "why" humans can be so inhumane either. Animals have always been and will always be my first love.

    snowballfights.blogspot.com

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  44. The more I read your blog, the more I start to believe that we are long lost sisters! Seriously. My boyfriend tells me all the time, "you have the biggest heart of anyone I know". I am an animal lover through & through. I've said on several occasions that I enjoy animals more than humans (call me crazy), but animals are typically only mean when they are harmed. Humans on the other hand can be just down right cruel. It breaks my heart that poor Walter had such a horrid experience with humans. My goal is to someday be able to open up my own clinic for abused animals.

    Also, I relate to you on the part when you said you wished you didn't have a big heart! Girl, I have said that numerous times! Having a big heart means you get your heart broken a lot! :( However, if it weren't for people like us (with big hearts) then this world would be a horrible place!

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  45. Ohhh, friend. I think that its the hardest thing when animals die because of mistreatment of humans. I almost destroyed a friendship over an argument based upon Michael Vick's treatment of dogs. And I used to volunteer with a pet adoption agency in high school that was run out of PetSmart which is where I got two of my dogs. All the dogs of my life have been pound puppies. Lastly, my sister has been known to call the Humane Society to report anyone (including neighbors) she believes is not treating pets properly. Yes, we take animal treatment seriously over here.

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  46. Brought tears to my eyes reading your post. My daughter and I are huge animal lovers, and have friends who work for a company called Wires in Australia. Wires rescues wild animals. My girl (10 yo) has dreams of being just like our friends when she grows up and rescuing animals that have been abused or thrown away, even though she is allergic to most of them. If you ask me there need to be more people in the world who care!

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