You don’t know who I am and you probably don’t remember my dog, but I will always remember you. It’s been a month and the 30-foot tire marks are still burned onto the pavement in front of the driveway where you ran down an 18-month-old puppy like it was some sort of game.
Jinx would not be most people’s first guess for a seizure alert dog. But she instinctually knew when I had seizures coming on. Jinx was the only thing stabilizing my seizures. My seizures are not the obvious kind. I do not get the stereotypical convulsions which makes them much harder to detect. She had me diagnosed long before I even had a clue I was getting them. She would come check on me every 2 hours like clockwork and she would snap me out of seizures by licking me. No one asked her to do it or taught her to do it. She just figured it out on her own. I did not fully comprehend how much she was doing for me until after she was gone. Barely 24 hours without her there to snap me out of the small seizures, they began spiraling out of control. Small seizures cascaded into bigger seizures which eventually ended with a trip to the ER. My life went from fragile, but stable, to spiraling out of control.
You got to walk away.
You didn’t have to spend hours seizing in the ER.
You didn’t have to spend weeks being unable to leave the house for anything other than doctor appointments because of seizures.
You didn’t have to experience any of this because you were able to walk away and go on with your life. I’m sure you had your bumps and bruises, probably some road rash. But you didn’t have to stick around for the aftermath. You were able to write her off as just a vicious dog who got what was coming to her.
Would you have acted differently if she had been a Beagle or a Collie? Would you have provoked her? Would you have cared?
Did you think it was ok to see a barking dog and rev your engines louder? Did you think it was ok – funny even – to lure her out and run her down because she looked like the type of dog the media paints as “vicious?” Or were you just not thinking at all?
Maybe you were out for a joyride. Maybe you just rev your engines at barking dogs because you don’t think it hurts anyone. Maybe you’ve done this dozens of times and gotten away with it. You will probably be the only one who ever knows the truth about your actions that day.
But there is one thing I can tell you for sure: Jinx never hurt anyone and she certainly never hurt you.
If you are reading this, I’m sure you’re expecting this to turn into a rant about how you need to be punished. To be quite honest, there is that part of me that wants you to suffer as much as I have for what you did. But that won’t bring Jinx back and – at the end of the day – it would only do more harm than good. So, here’s the coup de grâce:
I forgive you.
To someone who only knows dogs through inflated, uneducated, news reports, Jinx may have looked vicious, but she was the sweetest dog on four paws this world has seen. No amount of money in the world can undo this. So, I’m not here to demand money or reparation. I just have a few requests:
I ask that you understand the damage you have done and come to appreciate the value that every life holds.
I ask that you take responsibility for your actions in the future and ensure that this never happens again.
I ask that one day you learn to look past the color of skin and the media reputation of a stereotype to see the wonderful, individual, creature beneath before you pass judgement.
Most of all, I pray that Jinx did not die in vain and hope that you learn a valuable lesson from this senseless tragedy.
A Grieving Epileptic