Today is the first day I've felt like my old dog-self since my many long weeks of recovery from back surgery. It doesn't matter that I can't jump anymore or stand on my hind legs to dance like I used to. I'm able to walk and prance around with a ball in my mouth, and to go up and down stairs without hesitation. I'm out of pain, and I feel doggone blessed.
But as I sit here paw-writing about my recovery, I have a heavy heart about the animals and humans in New Orleans and other Gulf Coast areas watching Hurricane Gustav approach.
Dog-ma has always told me it takes three years to heal from big losses. That's why I wanted to celebrate this week's 3rd anniversary of Katrina. I figured everybuddy would finally be healed.
But it wasn't to be. As of this afternoon, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin has ordered a mandatory evacuation of the city. That changes the informal advice to flee from the approaching storm to an official order to get out.
Imagine all the distraught humans and animals in the path of Gustav -- now being called the storm of the century. It'll likely make landfall between East Texas and western Mississippi two days from now.
About one million people and countless pets along the Gulf Coast took to the highways today to escape Gustav.
One of those pets is a brown and white spotted hound dog named Lee Roy. He waited on a corner with his disabled human, Elizabeth Tell, said WRAL News. Fur three hours they waited fur a special needs bus to take them to the station. Lee Roy panted inside his kennel carrier as his upset human got more upset waiting.
A couple of St. Bernard Parish dogs and their four rabbit friends wanted to leave. They squeezed into their family truck alongside family belongings. Their humans, Gary and Deanna Sass, were reported by AP News to be hurriedly packing to get out before it's too late.
We all know that not everybuddy's gonna evacuate -- fur a variety of reasons. As one tired NOLA human summed it up: "I can't do this again."
Paw prayers out to everybuddy.
Pawnote: Woof thanks to all journalist-humans who continue to report news on site in the threatened Gulf region. Pawleeze, everybuddy, read the personal pet evacuation info at Louisiana SPCA (LA-SPCA).
Photo credit: LA-SPCA in New Orleans