Should I save a dog?

Feb 26, 2024

 

QUESTION

Dearest Robina,

 

Hope you are well.

 

I’m hoping for some guidance.

 

I volunteer weekly at a dog pound, taking the dogs to a large exercise yard. One dog was very selective about who could handle him but bonded with me immediately. 

 

During his two months there, his selective behavior worsened (as with many dogs) and I was concerned that this would see him being put down.

 

The only way to stop his suffering is to adopt him. However, I live with my adult daughter and she does not like having dogs in the house.

 

So my request for guidance is: Do I save him from this misery and give him a home or do I respect my daughter’s wishes and leave him there?

 

In gratitude,

A

 

ANSWER

Dear A:

 

Thank you for explaining things!

 

If your adult daughter is paying rent and sharing all the tasks of running the household, then you could argue she has a say in whether or not you have a dog.

 

But if she is just living there with you, her mother, and allowing you to pay the costs and do the laundry and cook the meals, etc. etc., then she has no say at all. 

 

In which case, definitely get the dog! It sounds like you do have a karmic connection with the dear creature. How fortunate he is to have found you!

 

What do you think?

 

Love,

Robina

 

QUESTION

Dearest Robina,

 

Thank you for your prompt reply.

 

My daughter contributes financially to the house expenses and does her own cooking/ laundry. I still get the groceries, maintain the house and garden, pay bills, etc.

 

You speak of the two wings – compassion and wisdom.

 

My concern is that I’m attached to the idea of my need to save the dog based on compassion but disregarding the wisdom (knowing this will annoy my daughter) and the fact that there’ll be 30+ dogs left at this place that I can’t save, who are all stressed and routinely euthanized. 

 

In gratitude,

A

 

ANSWER

You’re right, A: you can’t save all the others – but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t save one.

 

And in relation to your being attached to getting what you want: given that it’s the life of a sentient being, it follows there’s compassion there too.

 

But maybe the attachment that’s getting in the way of your making a decision is the attachment to your daughter’s approval and your fear of her disapproval. 

 

What do you think?

 

I hope the dear creature is already nicely settled in with you!

 

Love,

Robina

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