I was driving down a pretty busy road – not a highway by any means, but a main vessel in my city – when I saw a car on the other side hit a dog. The driver kept on driving and the owner of that dog, approximately a 10-12 year old boy, attempted to stop traffic so he could get his dog. He was screaming and crying and flailing his arms to stop the traffic that kept on passing by. I was on the other side of the road, but seeing that no one was stopping to help, I halted my own car and jumped out to help the boy and his dog. I was aghast that people could keep on going by! It was a horrifying sight.
As traffic kept on going, even with my car in the middle of my lane (and the hit dog in the middle of the other), I tried to calm the boy. I pet the dog, trying to figure out a way to move him out of the road. He was a larger dog and I was afraid he would bite. His leg had been hit. I could see everything below what would’ve been his fur. Vessels and blood and muscle – all bare. But I thought he would be okay. It was just his leg. So, I pet the dog and told the boy, “don’t worry, he will live. It’s okay.” I thought that would calm him down. Then suddenly there was another lady there, taking charge. She handed me her phone and the little boy (frantic all the while) told me his mom’s phone number. After several tries, his mother would not answer. Then, another man came. This time, a foreign man with an accent. He said, “I hit the dog, it was so fast. I am so sorry.” At first, I wanted to beat him up, but then resolved to the fact that he did indeed come back and so he at least had to have some decency.
I thought things were out of my hands at that point, so I left in my car and called the police. I gave the police my name and number. And wouldn’t you know it, the police called that evening. They said the man who hit the dog left before the police got there and didn’t leave his information behind so they were just calling to get the facts of the event. I told the officer everything I knew, even how disappointed I was that drivers kept on driving by and how they just drove around a hit dog and his owner, just a small boy. Then, I asked how the dog was. And he said it did not make it. So, I am left with the visions of a distraught little boy and the lie that I told him.
As I lay down to sleep last night, after I had tried to exhaust my brain and thoughts with reading, I had to sing to myself ‘lalalalalalalalalalalala’ every time the picture of the dog with the open wounded leg or the little boy screaming in the street or the man with the accent saying he did it popped into my mind. ‘lalalalalalalalalalala.’ Those sad, sad thoughts & visions will be with me forever.
The worst of it is that I am so saddened for that little boy, the grief he felt that night and will feel for the rest of his life, feeling responsible for his dog’s death, I am sure, but I can’t stop thinking that my kids, too, will probably at some point in their lives be stricken with some sort of grief. Maybe just a dog being hit by a car, or maybe worse. And there is absolutely nothing I can do about that. That powerlessness scares me. I have no idea what the future holds or the things my kids will be faced with, happy or sad. I can only pray & pray & pray that they have mostly happy lives.