I was clearing out my e-mail account as it has been overwhelmed the past few months. It appears that the millions of people who are confined to their homes are keeping the internet busy. Anyway, an article caught my eye. Did you ever have mixed feelings when a story involves helping out a dog?
When Did the Mixed Feelings Begin?
The story involves a kind-hearted woman who was near a Texas Walmart when she saw an unusual sign being held by a homeless man. This sign was unlike any other that Wilma Price had ever seen. Although she frequently passes by transient individuals holding signs, she had never seen a sign like this one.
So, What Did She Do Next?
According to the website, Little Things, where I first heard about this story, Wilma was so intrigued by the sign that she had to stop and inquire about the situation. The man’s cardboard sign indicated that he needed a large sum of money. It said he needed to rescue his dog from the local animal impound shelter (aka, the “pound”)
Wilma was so impressed by the entire situation that she shared her story on Facebook. There, she wrote that she had seen “every sign in the world” except that one. This unique cardboard sign induced her to pull over to the side of the road. She wanted to investigate the situation further and would block traffic to do so.
Other motorists were apparently unhappy with her for doing so and let her know it. However, she could not resist finding out more about this man, his dog, and the need for so much money. She had to know more and was determined to find out what she could from this man.
When Wilma asked the transient man with the intriguing cardboard sign, “what his deal was?” he explained in some detail. It would take $120 to spring his pup from the shelter but he was $112 shy of that amount, having only $8 in his pocket.
Wilma Still Had Mixed Feelings and Wanted to Know Why He Needed $120
Wilma shared her contact info with the dog owner via her business card. She also told him she would look into the situation and consider what she might be able to do to help him out. And, she did just that. When she contacted the pound, they gave her the same information that had previously been shared with her in the Walmart parking lot. They also verified the amount of money required for the dog to be released.
As would most people in the same situation, Wilma inquired as to why they charged so much for the dog’s release. She was informed that there were multiple charges involved in that total of $120 for his release. In addition to the fee for impoundment, there were charges for the medical services. Each dog in their shelter received a rabies shot, flea prevention, and a test for heartworms.
Nothing was mentioned about neutering the pup but most shelters do not release a dog that has not been rendered incapable of making puppies. This is a vital part of what shelters do to help prevent more dogs from becoming homeless. That procedure was most likely also part of the medical care the dog received while at the shelter. (Unless it was obvious that neutering had already taken place. This is possible with a male dog but not a female.)
A Wise Friend Also Had Mixed Feelings and Some Reasonable Advice
When Wilma asked a friend to help out with the $128 needed to rescue the dog, she was given some advice instead. Her wise friend suggested that she needed more information before deciding to shell out that much money for a stranger and his dog. There were details in the story that were missing and they needed to be discussed.
Taking the advice of her friend, Wilma returned to the Walmart parking lot to get more details. What she learned surprised her. And, what she found out would have put some people off from helping and the man and his dog, Fred Frederick.
The Details of the Story and Wilma’s Decision
First of all, she learned that the transient man is 30-years-and that his name is Patrick. The surprising part of the story is that Patrick had been found guilty of trespassing and sent to jail. During the two days Patrick was held in custody for trespassing, Fred Frederick (his dog) was held at the dog pound.
After whatever performing soul-searching needed to feel comfortable with her decision, Wilma’s mind was made up. Taking Patrick with her, she returned to the pound to pay for having Fred Frederick released.
The Reunion Was An Emotional One
All parties involved were clearly emotional at the reunion. Patrick was barely able to prevent the tears that were welling up in his eyes from running down his face. And, Fred Frederick was clearly shaking with emotion when he first saw Patrick.
Out of gratitude for all that the very generous stranger had done for him and his dog, he offered her all the cash that had been donated to him by others during that day. Wilma declined his sincere offer to give her, quite literally, his last penny.
Ms. Price said she could not accept the money and hoped he was able to buy that night’s dinner with it instead. Further, she regretted that she was not financially able to pay for Patrick and Fred to have a hotel room for a week
As Price returned Patrick and Fred back to where she first saw a man with a unique cardboard sign in the Wal-Mart lot, she could not help but reflect on the situation.
Price wrote, “Sometimes you just have to dig deeper and do what’s right in your heart.”
Original Source: Little Things