This past holiday season, my letter here was about a remarkable dog named Joe Bingo. I had rescued Joe Bingo from Houston's animal control as an emaciated, injured (ears had been cut off) boxer who was about to be euthanized. I wrote about his amazing spirit, his love of life and people, even though life and people had not been kind to this poor dog.
The response from this letter was just overwhelming -- I was truly touched and moved by the calls, letters, and offers of donations. It meant so much to me to hear from our customers who love animals and were willing to open their hearts and homes for a dog they had never met.
Unfortunately, Joe Bingo passed away a few days before that catalog with my letter in it mailed. He had just had his breakfast when he collapsed in his kennel and was rushed to the emergency pet hospital. He died on the table from complications of Gastric Torsion. Who knows if his weakened body just couldn't take the same things a ''normal'' dog's would have. We were all devastated -- he was such a great and noble dog. I just kept thinking, ''If he could have just held on a little longer, he would have gotten his forever home with one of our fantastic
customers.'' But it wasn't meant to be, and I had to face the fact again that sometimes things really are out of our control and not every story has a happy ending.
There can truly be no more rewarding endeavor than saving an animal's life, but sometimes your heart gets broken along the way, as ours did with Joe Bingo. I take comfort in knowing that the last half of his life was filled with love, warmth, food, toys, a soft bed, other dog friends to play with, and many, many people who cared deeply for him.
So thank you to everyone who called, emailed, wrote letters, or sent up a silent prayer for Joe Bingo. If any of you are considering adopting an animal this spring, please -- I can't stress this enough -- go to your local animal control or shelter and search for a companion there. You will be amazed at the wonderful dogs and cats that are in desperate need of good homes. Consider taking a chance on an older dog or a handicapped dog -- they languish in shelters because people are afraid to get too attached, afraid of possible medical bills, etc. As someone who rescued an old dog and whose best friend has a blind dog, I can tell you that those animals will
change your life in amazing and wonderful ways. I promise.
Thank you again.