Wednesday, June 25, 2008

spiritu's happy ending

spiritu's happy ending
Originally uploaded by Bridgman Pottery
I know I've told you about the plight of the white dove that seemed to be making its home in my fig tree and my neighbor's back yard, happily eating seed from our hands. When I last saw the bird, he was high up in my neighbor's oak tree, with seed spilling out of a hole in its craw. After a day or two, I didn't see it anymore. I was just despondent. It was so magical to have this white bird visiting us, letting us pet it, pick it up. In this photo, taken on June 11, I thought we were going to have to put it down or take it to a bird rescue facility. Big jethro-dumb Luther started barking behind the door, scaring both me and the bird so that it flew away. I thought that he'd surely perished.

You may not know this, but doves like Spiritu are completely defenseless. When they're released at weddings or funerals, they are essentially "throw-away" birds. Doves mate for life and domesticated doves have been given food, water, and shelter for their entire existence. Usually, they fall prey to dogs, cats, or hawks.

Last night I was putting some late tomatoes into my garden when Danny, my back-yard neighbor, wandered over. He told us that his wife called him a week and a half ago to tell him that the dove was resting on the fence, with its eyes closed. He came home, put his hand over the dove, brought it in, and gave it water. Poor bird was severely dehydrated. Cindy, his wife, bought a large cage for the dove, who now lives happily in their home. Their front porch is screened, so it flies around the porch. They have graciously offered to let us (me) pet-sit when they go out of town. Both Gary and I were so happy that we nearly cried. Well, I nearly cried. Gary did the guy-reaction "Great!" and went back to working on the treehouse.

I am so glad that this little docile bird has a happy ending. I still think he's a little magical.


sugarcreekstuff said...

What a cruel way to celebrate a wedding. Why don't we know this? I'm sure glad this little dove found just the right home, your neighbors sound like wonderful people.

April said...

That's such a sweet story, I'm glad he got a happy ending.

Leila said...

That IS great! I'm glad that the dove found a home where it'll be safe. And that you'll get to see it still, as a bonus.

bridgmanpottery said...

Sugarcreekstuff, it does seem really cruel, but the sad fact is that most bridal couples assume that the doves will come back to their owners. A friend and customer of mine said that her daughter, marrying this fall, was at a bakery that did cakes and also offered dove-releases. She asked what happened to them, and the owner of the doves said that "it was best not to talk about that." I suggested a butterfly release instead (because that's what my neighbor does as a side business). My neighbors are good people, animal lovers, and I'm so glad they have him. I knew that ya'll would be happy to know that this story ended well.

Anonymous said...

I'm so happy for you and your little friend.

Jess in MA said...

I am so happy the dove had a happy ending. Silly, but true, it's so nice to hear! What a terrible thing that the birds released for weddings and such are just left to fend for themselves and can't possibly survive. I'm an animal lover but I had never heard this! I will be sure to remember and pass it along when it matters.