Monday, August 8, 2011

When Life is Not Fair

Life would be so much easier if every situation we had to deal with was black and white. 

And so it goes in the world of dog rescue sometimes, or at least in my breed, the English Cocker Spaniel.  

This picture is a purebred English Cocker Spaniel. 

 This picture is a purebred American Cocker Spaniel.

This picture features a purebred Springer Spaniel.

As a point of reference here, a short history lesson is probably appropriate.  In merry Olde England over 200 years ago, the Spaniel breed was not defined by American Cocker, English Cocker or the Springer Spaniel as it is today.  Basically, back then, they were all one breed and born in the same litter.  We Americans imported the cocker and bred it smaller with shorter noses and more heavily coated.  Springers were bred larger with less coat, while the English Cocker remained the mid-size Spaniel.  Eventually each breed became distinct and recognized as a separate breed by AKC.  

The pictures I've shared with you make it look as if breed identification would be easy, however......the lines blur from there.

Each of the three breeds, American, English and Springer have field bred dogs or bench bred dogs.  Bench bred or 'conformation' dogs are bred to closely meet the AKC written standard for looks, but field bred dogs are bred to hunt and their breeders are not as concerned with the dogs looks as according to AKC.  

This photo shows field bred Spaniels

Anyway....the reason I have shared (or bored) you all with this is.........

This dog!

She came into English Cocker Rescue yesterday and is now at my house.  'She' is supposed to have been an English Cocker, but it turns out once we got her transported here and could see her in person rather than photos, 'She' is a Springer Spaniel.  But can you tell from the photo?  We couldn't!

The reason I am calling her 'She' is because this sweet old lady was found wandering in the middle of a busy street and some kind person picked her up, tried to find her owner and ultimately got her into an American Cocker Rescue group.  So no one knows her name or anything about her.  No tags on her collar and no micro-chip.

American Cocker Rescue thought she was English and contacted us which is how she ended up with me.  Today, I've been in touch with the local English Springer Rescue person and they are going to take her into their program, evaluate her and get her the vet care she needs. 

This girl is old but soooo sweet.  She most likely is deaf and doesn't see well either.  Her teeth are in awful condition, has a cyst/tumor the size of a golf ball on her back and is bone thin. 

I feel so bad for her.  Where is her family, how did she get away from them, what is her name.  I'm sure she has been someone's loved pet and now in her twilight years she is lost from all that she knew.  Are they missing her or did she just get turned out because someone couldn't deal with her anymore. 

I can hear my mom telling us kids when we were growing up,  "Life is never fair", and she was right.

This is just not fair.


  1. I immediately thought Springer. I had one as a child.

    What ever she may be, she is beautiful.

  2. Aww, but she is lucky to have found you for a short time. She looks sweet. Keep us posted on what happens to her.

  3. Oh such a sweetie! My guess is the owners couldn't deal or she wandered away as old dogs tend to do. Thank-you Karen for being the guardian angel that you are as that makes life a little more fair for the vulnerable ones of all species no matter the breed! Bless your heart!
    Cathy G

  4. I thought Springer when I saw her, but no matter what you call her, I think she's beautiful! I always feel so sad for the senior dogs returned to the kennels or dumped at shelters. For an old dog who's a beloved pet to get lost or separated from a family who loved her seems even sadder. The poor thing! I look at our two senior gals and can't fathom such a thing, which is why we do have microchips and tags on them. I hope you can help her to feel comfortable and safe, and perhaps even a new home if her old one can't be located.

  5. Karen ~
    GGRRRR! Blogger is giving me fits. My first comment disappeared before I could leave it. I am going to try to leave it as anonymous.
    Anyway...I hope that sweetie finds someone to love her. Thank you so much for helping!
    Pug hugs :)

  6. OMG, Im sitting here with tears running down my cheeks. How could anyone who loved this dog for so long not do the right thing by her?

    YOu, Lauren, Terry (thru whom I adopted Bella) and others who do what you do deserve a medal.

    Hopefully she will live out her last days with a loving person. But again, the pain of watching those days with even a short life experience would heartfelt. As I said before, you and all others like you deserve a medal.

  7. Oh Karen, why can't you just keep her...just cause she isn't what you rescue, she's with you for a reason.

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