Sunday, February 27, 2011

Chasing Hank

Meet Hank, a two-year old, 35-pound Formosan Mountain Dog:

I spent most of my weekend volunteering with a dog rescue group, Saving Great Animals, trying to track down Hank in my neighborhood.

This poor dog has the saddest story, but I'm praying for a happy ending. He's from Taiwan and has only been in the United States for five days. He is one of forty dogs rescued from Taiwan. Hank's breed, the Formosan Mountain dog, and the fact that he's solid black, put him at high risk to become dog meat in Taiwan. In 2004 the Taiwanese government made selling dog meat illegal, but of course, people still do it. The Formosan is a favorite, and an all black dog is considered a delicacy.

Hank was a beloved family pet in Taiwan until a recent tragedy. His family's house burned down, and all of his family died in the fire. Somehow Hank got out of the house, and was sent to the Saving Great Animals sister shelter in Taipei. They wanted to get him out of Taiwan since he's solid black. The risk of someone eating him was too high. I don't know about you, but this just horrifies me.

Hank was picked up at the airport five days ago by his new foster mom. He'd just flown in on a flight from Taiwan. She said he has the sweetest personality and played with her dog (a rescue from Mexico that I fell in love with). Hank even let her two-year old pet him.

Two days after Hank's arrival, he was adopted by friends of his foster mom. This is where we should have a happy ending. Unfortunately, more tragedy struck. Within ten minutes of having Hank in their house, the new owners accidentally let him in the garage with the garage door open. Hank has been on the run for three days, in the coldest weather on record in Seattle (in the teens at night).

Last night there was a sighting about a mile from my house, so we searched from 9pm until 2:30am. We finally gave up and went home. This morning there was another sighting a half block from my house. I ran over to where Hank was spotted, and met the guy that had seen him. There's a huge reward for this dog so the guy was really trying to help us find him. No luck.

About two hours later a lady called and said he was in her yard. It was a fenced yard about a half mile from my house. There were eight of us, including a woman from Pet Partnerhip, a searh and rescue for lost pets group. She had a snare pole and was using her own dog as a "magnet" dog, to be used to lure Hank over to her so she can collar him. Unfortunately Hank freaked out. We ran after him, but we couldn't catch him. I was in tears. I couldn't believe we were so close to catching him, and he got away from us.

The rescue folks finally decided to set live animal traps for him, with food inside. One is a block from my house and the other one about 1/2 mile. They have to be checked every two to five hours. I hope we catch him.

The new owners that let Hank escape aren't going to be able to adopt him. They're not fit to be dog parents. I know they must feel awful, but they haven't helped us at all to try and find Hank, and their mistake was pretty big.

Send a little prayer out for Hank. :)

Back to my regularly scheduled program, weight loss
I attended my Weight Watchers meeting Saturday, and I weighed in at 182.6. Not fantastic. Heck, not good at all, but what I failed to mention is about ten days ago I saw 187.0 on my home scales. That was the first thing in the morning, naked. At Weight Watchers I had clothes on (I'm pretty sure you already knew that). I'm going in the right direction, but I still have a really long way to go.

Saturday night after walking around in the freezing cold until the wee hours of the morning, I came home starving to death. I had purchased a box of two-Point Lemon Mousse Pie bars at my meeting (never again). I ate the entire box when I got home. I think there were ten, at 70 calories each.

I was furious with myself afterwards. I'd spent an hour at the gym earlier in the day, 30 minutes StairMaster and 30 minutes crossramp. One hour of high intensity cardio. Then I'd traipsed through the woods for five hours looking for Hank. I burned a lot of calories but not enough to compensate for a 700- calorie binge.

What can I say? Not much. I started over today, again. So far, so good but it's only 9pm. I have to go check Hank's traps before I can go to bed. I'm totally exhausted from this weekend. It ws physically and emotionally challenging.


Splurgie said...

Don't beat yourself up over those lemon bars. It's done. I suspect you were running on empty and your body needed fuel then and there. Please keep up posted on the little dog. I have a soft spot for dogs and this little guy is lucky to have so many people who care about him.

Helen said...

Awwww, poor Hank. Please keep us updated about him!

kristi said...

Hank is beautiful...crossing fingers he is found!

Joy said...

He is such a beautiful dog. You are amazing for helping out such a great cause. I don't think some people realize how big of a responsibility pet ownership is. It's just like having a kid except they will never be able to live without you. Praying that everything with Hank works out.

Keep my pups in your prayers too. We have two rescue dogs and added a 3rd last Friday (Molly). We adopted Molly from the shelter and I noticed after having her for two days she started getting really sick. Immediately the worst came to my mind, Parvo, and I took her to the vet immediately. She does have Parvo and our Vet (bless his heart, he's the best vet ever) is doing everything he can to keep our little baby alive and rid her of this horrible disease. So please pray that she gets better and also for the health of our other two dogs. So far they don't have any symptoms of it and they are vaccinated so hopefully they will be ok.