My sister’s dog, Sydney, is going to have her leg amputated today. She’s been fighting cancerous cysts on her paw and has twice had them removed with surgery, but the vet suggested that the only thing to do to make her better was to amputate her leg.

I’m happy that she’ll soon be recovering and feeling better and her paw won’t be big and lumpy and painful anymore, but I can’t stop thinking about her today and how she must be feeling.

On the phone with my sister last night, with my own puppy curled up against me, I said to her that, as much as I would like to think that dogs feel and reason and think the same as we do, I’m sure that they don’t. Of course, they can love us and they show something similar to emotion when they’re scared or if they get yelled at and know they’ve done something wrong, but can they feel sad? Can they dwell on what they used to have and don’t have anymore (like four whole legs)? I don’t think so. It’s the only way I can figure that dogs can bounce back from a surgery like Sydney’s so fast.

How many dogs with three legs or dogs with paralyzed back ends hauling around doggie wheelchairs have you seen? Those dog’s don’t show self-pity. They don’t shy away from romping around with the other dogs even though they only have three legs. They just love life. Dogs are amazing creatures. And Sydney wil be one of those amazing pups, too. Be strong Sydney-Girl! The worst will soon be over.

(And by the way, that scruffy muppet-looking thing in the picture is a young Molly. That picture is from a couple of years ago, hopefully just minutes before an appointmet at the doggie-salon.)


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