Tuesday, 15 September 2009Photo from Internet: a rabbit with myxomatosis.
So, we were having a meeting to finalise the new version of Animal Krackers leaflet when the phone rings. It's Carol, our cat rescuer. She's with two of her grandchildren at a shopping area on the north of the river about 3 miles away. She's found a rabbit suffering severely from myxomatosis and wants me to go pick it up, take it to the vets to be put to sleep.
I'm okay with that and relay this to Susan, Andrea and our treasurer, Anne. They aren't okay with it. Why can't she go to the nearer PDSA? Fine, I'll take it there. The traffic is very heavy, it would take a while, says Susan who was over that way not long since. There's more but I start to get irritated. I call Carol back and while I'm talking get more annoying comments. I tell Susan to speak to her and toss the phone to her. Unfortunately I toss it harder than I intended and it looks like I'm throwing it at her.
I pick up the phone and give it Andrea who talks to her, coming over as being a mix of condescension, indifference, and patronising and suggests she flag a car down as well as saying wild animals aren't our brief and she should call the RSPCA, like they'd come for a dying rabbit.
At this point I lose my temper and call the three of them 'fucking uncaring bastards' and only just manage to not stalk out of the room.
I shouldn't have done that and I was very wrong to do it. But all I knew was that an animal was suffering and I had the chance to ease its pain and those three were fannying around about cost and time and more crap rather than just letting me get on with it. What should have been something simple blew up into a major heated emotionally-charged issue which totally pissed of Carol and myself who do just about all the work involving cats.
Carol ended up walking three quarters of a mile along a busy road with two small children, a rabbit in a box and she also happened to be going for a hospital checkup about her legs today. The PDSA stayed open a little longer and the rabbit was put to sleep.
It's 24 hours since this happened and both Carol and I have calmed down. But we know we were trying to do the right thing. We help animals, that's what we do. We also thought that's what Animal Krackers did.