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Chainey, Aptly Named

Story ID:3341
Written by:Suzana Margaret Megles (bio, contact, other stories)
Story type:Musings, Essays and Such
Location:various various USA
Year:2007
Person:various
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Chainey, Aptly Named

Chainey, Aptly Named

As a child of the 40th's, I don't remember that Santa Claus made that
much of an impression on me though I still remember fondly listening
to the radio and becoming excited hearing a favorite perenial then --
"You better watch out --you better not cry, you better not pout -I'm telling you why --Santa Claus is coming to town. He knows when you're asleep, he knows when you're awake, he knows when you are good or bad so be good for goodness sake. So-- you better watch out..." (I think this
is right. Maybe though some of you may remember it better than I have.)

However, our Santa was not dressed in a red and white outfit though
he did sport a beard and maybe a staff. Yes, our Santa was St. Nicholas,
and he brought us little kids hard tack candies in a small decorative candy box and a tangerine on his feast day of December 6th - in Lakewood, Ohio at St. Hedwing's Hall. This event was sponsored by the Glidden Paint Company where my father and many Eastern Europeans worked. And always, our Byzantine Catholic Church had a "St. Nicholas" who also gave us kids candy as well. Truly, we were so blest to be happy with so little -- though we didn't know it then. We
do now. Everybody today wants more and more for Christmas and I believe
baby Jesus is lost in the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season.
Whose birthday is it anyways?

I had no plans on writing anything for Our Echo, but today Vicki sent me an
e-mail poem which I thought I would like to share with Our Echo readers.
It was entitled "Santa." Umm, at first I thought--this is one e-mail I probably
won't enjoy. I'm not a Santa fan. But I was wrong - dead wrong. I loved
THIS Santa. After you read the beautiful poem by Pam Posey-Tanzey
I think you'll understand why.

"SANTA"

Santa comes quietly long before dawn
While shops are still busy and lights are still on,
While dinners are simmering and kitchens are warm
And children count presents they'll open by morn.

He slips past the trees in windows aglow
Through the gate to the back yard as icy winds blow,
To find the pup he brought last year
Chained up in the snow.
And kneeling, he whispers..."Are you ready to go?"

There are too many stops like this one tonight
Before the beginning of his regular flight.
He leaves not a note or a footprint in sight,
Just an unbuckled collar on a cold winter night.

I knew I would have to find a picture of a chained dog from the internet
site - "Dogs Deserve Better" whose onus is stopping the chaining of dogs.
There were many memorials to chained dogs who had finally been released
from the cruelty of being restrained on a chain in all kinds of weather. How
can people do this to their fellow animal beings who LIKE US suffer from
the extremes of cold and heat-- who need water and exercise and MOST OF ALL who need a home where they are loved and cared for.

Here were pictures of formerly chained dogs who were now being memorialized by their rescuers. I chose "Chainey" for obvious reasons though no matter their names --all their stories were heart-breaking. Chainey died on Feb. 5,
2005 and here is what his rescuer wrote about him:
"You were happy for a little while in your short, pain and fear- filled life. You were loved and you loved back. Looking at your face when you were playing...it meant more than I can express with mere words.

You were beaten and tortured and made to endure the worst man can give. What I saw in your eyes when you hid behind me in fear and the chain completely embedded in your neck when you came here, was proof what you had endured.

You didn't know how to play with the other dogs, you didn't know how to love me without almost knocking me down. But you tried so hard. You enjoyed the short time you had here with us more than any dog out I've known.

You did not forget, but you let me into your life, You trusted ME. And, I let you slip past my self-imposed barrier of protection. I loved you and I will never forget you. You were special and will always be in my heart.

Rest in Peace. You have earned it. You can run and play and bark and will never feel hunger, pain or fear again. You are free. Be happy and I'll see you at the Bridge. Try not to knock me down when you see me coming!"
Lisa Jones
Director, County Paws Rescue, Inc.

I hope I can get Chainey's story in our suburban paper. Maybe --if you feel
as I -you may try to do the same. Sometimes reporters latch unto stories they
want to embellish and print. This is the season where some people foolishly give
a pet and sadly many of them are poorly equiped to take on this responsibility.
At least-- hopefully stories like this will keep them from chaining the dogs
they no longer want and will at least try to find a good home for this once cherished
Christmas gift instead of chaining him or her out in the elements.

Hopefully, too the message has gone out -- that there are many pets in shelters
who need homes - good homes - but these pets should not be given as Christmas
presents for the reasons mentioned above. Only where there is a true desire should
a pet be brought home. And please remember that Pet shops are often recipients
of the horrendous puppy mills where the dogs are forced to reproduce ad infinatum
in often cruel conditions. During this wonderful season of Christmas we shall
hopefully think of others-- both human and animal. This would truly be celebrating
the birthday of Jesus who loves both humans and animals because He made us
all.