It's been three weeks and I'm still not sure I can write this.
In fact I'm sure of it, details are out of the questions.
So I'll give you the short version.
Three weeks ago Bodhi bit me.
Only he didn't just bite me. He sunk his teeth in, let go, reattached and did his best to take my arm off. It sounds dramatic, but I'm honestly not sure what would have happened if Matt hadn't been there with his steel toed boots.
Thank the greek gods that my arm wasn't broken and that the tendon damage was minimal. I'm still not back up to full use of my wrist.
As I agonised over what to do and tried to avoid the phone calls from Rabies and Animal Control, Bodhi Bit Jess. Without growling or any warning. It wasn't near as vicious as his attack on me but the bite was deep.
During that week people would see my arm, gasp, and ask what happened. As I told the story, again and again, something dawned on me.
I was in a abusive relationship with my dog.
I'd start off by telling people that Bodhi is always such a good dog. Very smart and always so good. And really the bite was my fault, I put myself between him and the other dogs. The viciousness, that was just because he was scared and didn't realize it was me he was biting. Well, yes he had bitten other people, but there were very good reasons for those. And most of them were before I even had him. And after I had him it's because he was being protective of me.... And he's never done too much damage. I mean most of the time...
But him biting Jess so soon after his attack on me? I couldn't explain that away.
I'd trail off and realize that just because I love that dog more then I've loved any human being besides my siblings, that wasn't enough. All those disney movies that told me that love could change everyone, they lied. In the following week I talked to vets, dog behaviorists, the K9 trainers for the police department. Told them how smart Bodhi was, how much of a lovebug he was, how I could let him run off leash while I jogged and he listened. We'd have conversations. He could tell when I was upset. He did drive by lickings. He was a good dog. He just had a history of biting.
They all told me the same thing. That I had no choice. That he was a biter by the time I got him and really the only reason he hadn't attacked before this was because of how safe he felt with me. But now it was only a matter of time before he bit a child, or did something that required surgery.
I cried for two weeks straight. I'd probably still be crying but I'm relatively sure I ran out of tears.
It was the hardest decision I've had to make. I won't tell you about the dark places that my mind dwelled. In my job I deal with domestic abusive relationships all. the. time. I've never been able to wrap my mind around the fact that these women (and men) stay in such violite situations. Now I get it. A part of me didn't care if he bit me again, I couldn't lose my dog. And surely if I just kept him from situations that made him feel aggressive then we'd be ok. And sure I was a little jumpy around him, sure my gut clenched every time he moved his head too quickly but I'd get over that fear.. right?
The comparisions kept building. I couldn't deny it anymore.
I've said for years that I don't believe in love. I mean, I know love is real, I feel it for my siblings. But the romantic love that lasts forever is just not something I can buy into.
But I loved Bodhi. Like my child.
Losing him has been a heartache that I can't imagine going through again.
It made me realize, if this is depth of feeling is what other people feel in relationships....
Why the fuck do they keep looking for love?