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Hurting And Worrying

She was angry but respectful, almost like she was angry at herself for being angry, if that makes any sense. Like it was coming out even though she didn’t want it to come out. She needed food but something told us this was about more than food for a little dog. The dog, he was older, she got him when a friend died and even though she didn’t have the money, she knew she was his only hope. She was older too, but she counted her coins and thanks to social security, bottle returns and food stamps, she made it to the end of each month. It wasn’t perfect but it worked and now they were a team, these two, together for a couple of years now. He had some aches and pains, she was worried, she took him to the vet. The meds helped and he was ok, but that money was his food money.

We told her we could help. How soon did she need food? Yesterday, she said. Based on where they were and what they needed, we could dispatch the Emergency Kibble Response Team and get food to them fast. But we sensed there was more, it was just the way she spoke. There was almost a sense of defeat in her voice. So we threw caution to the wind and we asked if there was anything else going on besides her sweet boy’s aches and pains, and the food he needed?

The money she spent for her dog’s vet care, that was his food money. But she had a neighbor, an even older woman with a small dog, and that dog was in worse shape than her own dog, so she used her other money to pay for that dog to see the vet too. This woman, she was a Saint.

Yet in that moment she didn’t see that, she only knew her dog was hungry and she couldn’t help him. But her anger, it seemed like it was more than the food. And then we found out why. Her “other money” was her dental money that she’d been saving penny by penny so her dentist could do the work to fix what hurt. Everything built up and there she was, tired and in pain, and she couldn’t even feed her dog. She’d been up all night hurting and worrying and then she called us, and it just came out. She didn’t mean to, it just happened. We’ve all been there.

This woman who grew up during tough times but had parents who taught her kindness and respect despite those tough times, slowed down and all at once, she sighed. She still didn’t know what to do. But we did. She needed a do-over, a chance to turn back the clock a little bit. And thanks to you, those of you who say to let you know when you’re needed the most, we were able to help make that happen. This family is doing fine, with full tummies, no pain, everyone is sleeping well. The neighbor dog too. They’re all good because you were there for them when they needed you most.

And this is why we Pongo.

Sit. Stay. Eat. Live.

(Photo of dog is not dog mentioned above, but another dog The Pongo Fund helped)