679. Flora was a dog

679chihuahua

Flora was a dog; a Chihuahua to be precise. Her real name was Conquistaflora; Flora for short. Winnie, her mistress, initially called her Conquistadora because “she had conquered my heart”. But then Winnie noticed little flower-shaped markings above each of Conquistadora’s eyes, and the name was changed to Conquistaflora.

Flora went everywhere with Winnie, always in an open handbag. It was a great way of stopping pick-pockets from secretly plunging a hand in Winnie’s bag to snatch the purse. Flora would snap, and that would be it.

And Flora had her own bed. It was a queen-sized bed, and usually Flora allowed Winnie and Winnie’s husband to sleep in it as well. They’d all been together for eight years.

Yes, Flora was Winnie’s constant companion – apart from Winnie’s husband of course. His name was Willie. Winnie and Willie didn’t have much money to go on, but they managed. They rented a small house. You’ve no idea how hard it is to find a cheap place to rent if you have a little dog. No one wants to rent a house to a dog owner. Not even a dog owner.

And then Willie upped and died, as people do. Naturally Winnie was upset, but she could no longer afford to rent the same house. She had to budget rather drastically. The rental agency stated it the way it was: get rid of that silly dog. You won’t get a cheap house if you have a dog.

The truth was that Winnie often went without food – just a little – so that Flora could eat. But Winnie bit the bullet and took Flora to the Animal Humane Society, and when they couldn’t find anyone to take Flora as a pet they put her down. Humanely, you understand? With an injection.

These days Winnie bursts into tears at the drop of a hat. She’s lonely without her husband. But she has a house to live in. As many like to point out, she’s simply selfish. She should be grateful.

45 thoughts on “679. Flora was a dog

  1. thecontentedcrafter

    This is a dreadful story! I met a woman in the dog park one day who was taking her aged dog for a last run before sending her to the SPCA for re-homing as she couldn’t get a state house with a dog. I found the lack of humanity in that scenario absolutely chilling!

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    1. Bruce Goodman Post author

      The only reason I live in Levin (although I like it) is because when I had to move from Port Waikato area a year ago (the landlords moved back in), this was the only house in the country I could find that would allow a dog and a cat! It costs $420 a week!

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      1. Cynthia Jobin

        A heartbreaking story. I must say that I’ve noticed how pets are becoming more acceptable than they used to be, here in New England, by both landlords and motels. Even the nursing homes and hospitals have “therapy dogs” that visit those places on a regular basis. Of course, if you own your own home, nobody can tell you not to have a dog or a cat. My various pets are my family, and I simply won’t part with them until it’s the natural time for them to go to the happy hunting ground.

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        1. Bruce Goodman Post author

          I drove from Asheville NC to Saint-George, Quebec – three days with a large dog – and not a single motel/hotel refused the dog! Over here, I think you’d have to sleep on the side of the road. Mind you, if you drove for three days you’d be somewhere between Auckland and the Marquesas!

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                1. Bruce Goodman Post author

                  I loved Walden Pond – when I was in Boston my mother reread every Walden Pond vicinity author through and through – Hawthorne, the Alcotts, Thoreau… in fact, she followed me around the world reading the authors of where ever I was. I think it was her way of travelling!

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            1. Bruce Goodman Post author

              I never knew about professional dog-walkers! If you read the old (British) census records, you can stumble across professional mole-catchers – which I always thought was wonderful! (We don’t have moles in NZ).

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      1. arlingwoman

        I’m going for a walk soon to shake it off. $1640 a month for a house with some acreage is unheard of here. More like an efficiency. There are lots of –even large–dogs in my neighborhood in apartments and condos. Sounds like Kiwi property owners need to get with the program around pets!

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  2. Anonymous

    Sad but true that many pet owners drown their own pets when they want to go overseas or take them to the vet to be put down….it’s a dog’s life

    Liked by 1 person

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