Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Give it UP for the DOG!

From my beautiful friend Lisa Kim, who is doing SO MUCH GOOD volunteering at the Glendale Humane Society.

That's her handsome boy, PIPER, left.


Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year- old Irish Wolfhound named Belker.
The dog's owners,Ron, his wife, Lisa, and their little boy, Shane, were all very attached to Belker and they were hoping for a miracle.

I examined Belker and found he was dying ofcancer. I told the family there were no miracles left for Belker, and
offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home. As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for the four-year-old Shane to observe the procedure. They felt as though Shane might learn something fromthe experience.

The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker's family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away. The little boy seemed to accept Belker's transition without any difficulty or confusion.

We sat together for a while after Belker's death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter
than human lives. Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up,"I know why."

Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me. I'd never heard a more comforting

He said, "People are born so that they can learn how to live a good
life -- like loving everybody all the time andbeing nice, right?"
The four-year-old continued, "Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don't have to stay as long."

Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply, Speak kindly.

Thierry Kolpin, M.S.
Assistant Professor of Education
Assistant Chair Off-Campus

I sent this out initially to a small group of friends, and yeah, I think it got them all as misty eyed as me.


Luckily she's got a ways to go about loving everbody and being nice all the time. So that means I still have her around for a while. She's delightfully imperfect, greedy, lazy, snobby, flatulent, self-indulgent and did I say greedy? Ha! It's like I have a cat instead of a dog. But if she weren't all those things I wouldn't love her so much. :)

1 comment:

Kim said...

Touche Hel, my little jealous, loves nobody but himself, miniature pinscher is 13 going strong and my lovable stoopid retriever is 6 going on 60. Ironic isn't it?