Attacking Life with Comedic Jaws of Sarcasm. Recovering Dating & Relationship Blogger - Made it to Step 12 When I Got Married.

I’d Like to Meet the Man or Woman Responsible For This

Sometimes I just don’t believe the shit that happens.

My precious Thora turns 8 years old in one month. I’ve had her since she was 3 months old. My then-boyfriend found her running around Savannah looking for someone to play with. He was working on a movie, The Gift, in which Thora appears in the opening credits. My ex called me and asked me to come from Atlanta, where we were living, to Savannah to get our new dog who had disrupted the filming schedule one too many times with her barking.

Thora didn’t have a name for the first couple of weeks. But “thoro” means “gift” in Greek. Since she was our gift, and also in “The Gift,” there you go. Having only had hamsters and a chinchilla, I never felt connected to a pet in my life. That first night I got to Savannah in February of 2000, Thora lay in bed with me in some horrifying fleabag motel while my ex was filming overnight. She rolled over on her back and slept with all four legs spread out like a starfish. I thought, “Holy shit. She spreads her legs like me!” No, wait. That’s not what I thought. I thought, “I’m actually someone’s quasi-mom now. WHAT HAVE I DONE?”

Other than the time when she ate an inkjet cartridge on Christmas morning, other than the time when she grabbed the fabric skirt on the couch and went running across the room tearing it with her as she went, other than the time when she tried to dig out of our apartment and pulled up the rug and padding down to the concrete, other than the time she jumped out of the car on Buford Highway in Atlanta to chase a squirrel, other than the time she rolled in a septic field and smelled like shit for weeks, other than the time she killed my ex’s mom’s chickens (OMG don’t ask, please don’t ask,) I have loved this dog.

When she ran away from my ex’s house, I went on an all out rampage to get her back. I was living in Maryland at the time. I made a spreadsheet called Thora Come Home. I sat at work and made phone calls all day and placed ads in newspapers. The 3rd day the ad dropped, someone called to say “I think my neighbor has your dog.” I drove all night with my friend to go get her. No one was going to stop me.

When we pulled up in front of the lesbian’s house (look, that’s who rescued her, ok? and yesssss they have lesbians in red states) Thora walked outside, looked at me as if to say “Where have you been, bitch” jumped in the original Velvet, crawled in the backseat and went to sleep. I had brought all sorts of pictures to prove Thora was mine and I wasn’t just some lunatic driving from Maryland to Macon, Georgia to get a dog. But when they saw that they said, “Thas yer dog a’ight.”

So, present day. Thora has been having trouble walking all of a sudden. I took her to the vet for x-rays. I expected a torn ligament. I expected arthritis. I did not expect this.

“Did you know your dog has been shot?”

I actually said to the doctor, “SHUT THE FUCK UP!”

“Yes, quite a few times.”

I saw the x-ray. I saw 11 bullets. I brought the King of the Dog Park. He also saw the 11 bullets. We were stunned. I swear, I felt like fainting. Like everything just changed. In an instant. Who the fuck would shoot a dog? I called my ex, and we reconstructed a timeline of the last 8 years, and we have no idea. How does your dog get 11 wounds and you don’t notice blood? So did it happen before we got her? And if so, why didn’t she ever show any signs of injury before now? Did she get it in that time she was on the run, when she ended up at the lesbian’s house? I don’t know. I’ll never know. I’m just honestly – stunned. For years, I have wondered what Sammy and Thora’s lives were like before they came into mine. But in my wildest dreams, I never imagined they were abused or, worse, shot.

So now, my dear sweet Thora, I get it. I get why thunder scares you. I get why the slamming of the UPS truck door makes you jump. I get why the popping of the bubble wrap petrifies you so much you hide under the bed. Now it all makes sense. I often wish my dogs could talk. There’s so much I want to know that only they can tell me. Though, thoughts of gunshots and bullets…maybe I don’t want to know it all.


Loves you Thora Bean. You’ll always be my first baby. I’ll spend all my money and jack up my credit cards to make sure you get well.


  1. Leda

    Your Thora is clearly as lucky to have you for a mom as you are to have her. Hopefully she gets all better soon.

  2. Drunken Chud

    11???!!!! holy shit. never mind who shot her, get her a record deal. shit fitty got shot 9 times… thora’s two up on him. her hit single could be “fuck yo couch fitty!” seriously, shot 11 times and no visible signs of injury for 8 years. that’s one tough bitch.

  3. Red


    She is lucky to have you so you can make her better. Keep us posted as to how she is doing and Mini Red and I are sending our best.

  4. I-66

    Wowwwww. Unbelievable! I don’t even know what else to say.

  5. I-66

    Oops… forgot to close my tag.

  6. I-66

    Okay. What the crap.

    Forget it. I’m going home.

  7. Erika

    and your home equity. you forgot that. I blew through $10K –yes, $10K — of home equity for one of my babies.

  8. mysterygirl!

    Oh my gosh! That’s insane. Poor Thora– it looks like she had some hard times, which makes her all the luckier to have you for a mom.

  9. nato

    . . . and another reminder of why I think most people just fucking suck. As everyone else has mentioned, she’s a lucky dog to have you. And yes, we all want to hear the story of your ex’s mom’s chickens. I know the golden retarded, er, retriever currently lying on my left foot and filling my cramped office with his horrid doggy-flatulence would love to hear it. Bad-dog stories make him feel like a good dog in comparison.

  10. Momentary Academic

    Oh my god. I’m trying to think about what the x-rays must look like. I don’t understand why anyone would do such a thing. If you need to take her to an acupuncturist, let me know. My mom has all of the numbers.

  11. minijonb

    if you ever find the dog that shot her, pop a cap it in its ass for revenge.

  12. homeimprovementninja

    Wow. Sorry about Thora. What kind of asshole would shoot a dog?

  13. Barbara

    Wow! What an unexpected shock! I wonder why it just now became apparent something was wrong. What happens next? I’m so glad she is in such good caring hands. Not everyone puts their pets first.

    Jake sends his love!

  14. nato

    Ninja, I worked in a veterinary hospital for 11 years. The answer to your question is “practically every kind of asshole.” There are plenty of people who like to do it “for fun” (usually teens, early twenties), but if Thora was running loose in a rural location (read: middle of nowhere Georgia as seen in the aforementioned “The Gift”), it’s also likely that someone felt she was a threat to their livestock and shot at her to keep their cows, horses, chickens or favorite pig/lover safe.

  15. Velvet

    Leda – Thanks.

    Chud – I suppose no physical signs of the injury, but maybe emotional. When thunder comes around, this dog is a FREAK!

    I66 – It really was pretty shocking. And then I thought I was just overreacting, but everyone I’ve told has the same stunned look on their face.

    Erika – True. Though luckily I have this Harley Davidson I’m considering selling…I’ll get several thousand from that. So that will help. She goes to the specialist on Wednesday so we’ll see. I don’t think they can do an MRI because it can shift the bullets. I’m not sure what they are going to come up with.

    Mysterygirl! – Thank you. I love this little dog more than many married couples love each other.

    Nato – Okay. My ex’s mom had a petting farm at her place in Georgia. When the hamsters and chinchilla died, I gave her all those cages and she made some “rodent shack” out of all of it. She had a home daycare, so the animals were another draw and something for the kids to do. Anyway, one of her chickens, Ms. Penny, flew into the fenced in part of the yard where we had the dogs. Ms. Penny never made it unfortunately. Thora (and to a lesser extent, Mr. Me-Too, a.k.a. Sammy) killed her.

    MA – Actually, that may end up being my next step. Someone else recommended that yesterday. It might be my only option, short of an operation – though no one knows what is causing her to hold her leg up. Unless one of the bullets shifted and is rubbing on a nerve. Which they could only find out with an MRI. Which they can’t do because of the bullets. Great.

    MinijonB – Oh, I would LOVE to meet the person who shot her.

    Ninja – Oh, a redneck asshole.

    Barbara – I don’t know, all I can think of is that with all her swimming and exercise this summer and the near-collision with the dogs in the dog park, that a bullet shifted. I’ll be eating Spam before I give up on Thora. If it takes all the money I have.

    Nato – Somehow it would be better to know that someone was shooting at her to keep her away from their livestock than the alternative of a bunch of kids shooting at her for fun. Though, both of the perps in my eyes must die.

  16. playfulinnc

    Aw! My swimmin’ patnah. I’m glad she’s got you!

  17. freckledk

    I’m voting for a “Save Thora” happy hour. Poor little Bean. I can’t imagine who would do that to such a sweet pup. Even more imaginable is that she remains such a sweet pup after all that has happened to her.

  18. Not So Little Woman

    If there’s anything you need, let us know. I’m all up for starting a “Help Thora” fund. Basil and I will pitch in. Promise.

  19. E :)

    I hope the asshole who shot Thora dies a painful death. Get well Thora!

  20. JohnnyDC

    I say we call her OG Thora…

    Came from the hood and never lookin back!

  21. Kerrin

    Oh my gosh! I can’t believe that such a thing could happen! Actually I can, but I don’t like to give in to such thoughts. It’s possible she was shot before you even found her. Many times people think the only “solution” to unwanted puppies is to, well, take them in the woods and…you can guess the rest. But they’d never spay or neuter their dog because “that just ain’t righ’.” It just goes to show what a tough girl she really is that she survived. And I’m happy to donate to any “Help Thora” fund that may start up. 🙂

  22. Velvet

    Playful – Oh, we need to come back! I love it there!

    FK – Oh, but she is full of the devil. And bullets, apparently. But definitely the devil. That’s my baby girl!

    NSLW – Yay! Basil? Who?

    E:) – She goes to the vet again tomorrow. We’ll see.

    JohnnyDC – She was happy to get out I’m sure.

    Kerrin – I’m thinking it was probably before we found her too. Ooh, a help Thora fund. That would rule! Well, I’ll know tomorrow what the damage is going to be.

  23. Valley Girl

    As an owner of two dogs myself, this post makes me so sad. I hope whoever did that to her rots in hell. Sick f*cks.

  24. UBH


    I’d run up my credit cards and everyone I know’s credit cards to give my dogs the best medical care known to man.

    The older of the two once got very sick. I did 145MPH (on the freeway in Chicago, in a very capable car,)to get home from my office to rush her to the vet.

    She lived and is happy as a little black clam today.

    Who would shoot a dog 11X? I mean, its one thing to put a dog down. Its another to be a careless jackass that does something like was done to yours.

  25. jordanbaker

    Do they know how long ago she was shot? Because my initial fear was that DC cops had taken their wrath at you out on Thora.

    But rednecks is probably a more likely solution–I knew sooooo many kids growing up who used to shoot pellets at cats and dogs, and everyone in AZ wrote it off as “boys will be boys.” Morons.

  26. Phil

    Holy cow! Your dog is 50 cent!

    Buford Highway can be a tough place…

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