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  1. naturegirl
    naturegirl May 26, 2011 2:09 pm

    OMG, that was tough to watch….yeah, it had a happy ending, but still…..poor thing…..

  2. Mary Lou
    Mary Lou May 26, 2011 7:45 pm

    Unfortunately, not really a happy ending…. ‘But you will find no joyous footage of happy reunions accompanying this story. With everything Mason’s owners had been through themselves because of the tornado, they decided they could not deal with an injured dog and all the expensive medical care he would need. So they gave him over to the local animal shelter.’

    Mason is at the vet’s being treated, and there have been many offers of a new home (hopefully one worthy of this courageous animal.)

  3. Woody
    Woody May 27, 2011 5:50 am

    I spend a lot of time in the woods with one of my dogs. I have often thought about how I would get her out of the woods if she were injured and unable to walk. Leaving her while I go for help is not the best alternative but I have been unable to come a better one. There is no cellphone service where I live/walk.

    I am trying to come up with a method of carrying her that leaves my hands at least partially available for use in crossing rough terrain. She weighs about 55 pounds. I’m trying to envision some type of sling, that while light and small enough to carry in a pocket, would enable me to carry her against my chest while I walk/clamber out of the woods.

    Like a spare tire it will probably never get used but would be reassuring to have. Therefore it has to stow very small and be light weight. If anyone has any ideas for making such a thing or knows of a commercially available product I’d appreciate a heads up.

    The funny part is, that between the two of us, I’m the one most likely to injure myself.

  4. Claire
    Claire May 27, 2011 6:20 am

    Woody, you never know. Here’s a bad trail encounter I read several years ago and still can’t get out of my mind (don’t worry, it has a good ending):

    The dog in question weighs less than yours and he didn’t need a sling because the guy already had a backpack. But hm. A sling made of something lightweight, foldable, durable, yet strong enough to bear the weight of a 55-pound dog …

    How about finding an old nylon tent at a garage sale and sewing up (or having somebody sew) a sling out of that?

  5. Woody
    Woody May 27, 2011 10:27 am

    Claire, Thanks for the link to Kiwi’s story. I’ll be ordering a copy of The Dog Repair Book as soon as I’m done with this post.

    Our daily hikes are not quite so difficult as Kiwi’s. We walk through Appalachian hardwood forest that is either rocky and steep or wet and boggy, by turns. There are no trails to speak of other than faint game trails. The footing is usually difficult.

    What got me to thinking on the subject was Fionna having a seizure while we were out a couple of weeks ago. She recovered in 2 or 3 minutes (seemed like forever) and acted like it hadn’t happened. But it brought to mind all sorts of terrible “what if” thoughts.

    So far, my thoughts are to use Tyvek non woven fabric (or something similar) because it is light and nearly impossible to tear. Light weight nylon straps that place the load on my shoulders and back of my neck. (Picture a modified firewood carrier.) Carrying her in front would allow me to cradle her close to my chest, taking some load on my arms, but allowing me the use of my arms in difficult footing or the use of a walking stick. I haven’t yet put needle to fabric but I’m getting closer to giving it a try.

  6. Claire
    Claire May 27, 2011 4:35 pm

    Mary Lou — Yeah, that part bothered me, too. When you think of what Mason must have gone through to get home, what a heartbreak that the family he struggled so valiantly to return to couldn’t find a way to keep him. OTOH, we don’t really know what they’ve endured, either. If they gave him up just to avoid paying his vet bills, then shame on them. But if they’re living in a shelter, if they’ve lost more than they can cope with, if they’re out of work … I wouldn’t want to judge them. I can’t even imagine what it must be like to live in one of those areas hit by this year’s monster tornadoes.

  7. naturegirl
    naturegirl May 28, 2011 12:04 am

    I have no problem judging them – the dog has more integrity then they do……

  8. Woody
    Woody May 28, 2011 5:24 am

    I try to imagine circumstances that would compel me to abandon one of my dogs after an experience like Mason’s. I can’t see me doing it. I hate to be judgmental but this case may warrant it.

    He is your friend,
    your partner,
    your dog.
    You are his life,
    his love,
    his leader.
    He will be yours,
    faithful and true,
    to the last beat of his heart.
    You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion.
    ~author unknown~

  9. Mary Lou
    Mary Lou May 31, 2011 6:58 pm

    Nature girl and Woody, I agree …I would no more abandon (surrender0 one of my animals than I would abandon my human family. If I were myself hospitalized or incapacitated, I have made arrangements for my animals’ care. So yep, I DO judge these folks.

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