Thursday, November 13, 2008

What do you think?

About a month ago we woke up and spotted a puppy out on our back deck. We asked around the neighborhood if anyone lost a dog and no one was missing one. We decided someone just dropped her off at our place in the middle of the night abandoning her here. She is a perfectly lovely dog. We blieve she is part Healer and part Coon Hound. She is still a puppy. We estimate her age to be around 6-8 months or so. She is already a big dog. I know dogs do not reach their full size for a year to two years. She is going to be much bigger and hasn't grown into her large paws yet.

The weekend after we aquired her, my three step-children's mother came and picked up her children for visitation. She spotted the dog and instantly wanted the dog. She insisted the dog was just what she was looking for. She kindly called us and asked if she could take the dog since the kids told her the dog was abandoned at our doorstep and we hadn't gone out and purchased the dog. At this point, we had already decided we were keeping the dog. The kids live with us and they see the dog daily. Their mother lives in a tiny little trailer in town with a very small yard. We live in the country on 40 acres. We didn't feel her tiny little trailer was anyplace to keep a dog, especially a dog with the potential of getting much larger than she already is. We told her no, she couldn't have the dog.

Over the course of the past weeks, my step-children's mother has made increasingly more persistent and nastier demands that we give her the dog. She even went so far as to leaving a threatening message on my husband's phone last weekend about the dog. She then left him a second message apologizing and saying she has no rights to make demands that we give her the dog.

Last night the children once again went with their mother for visitation. My husband and I had placed our three youngest children in the care of my husband's brother while we went into town shopping. We were not home when their mother brought the children back home. She promptly loaded the dog up into her van and took the dog home with her!

We were not made aware of this theft of our dog until this morning since the children were all in bed sleeping when we came home last night. It didn't occur to us the dog wasn't there when we came home. She usually would come running up to us wagging her tail in greeting. We got home late and we were tired. We didn't even realize she wasn't there.

My husband woke me up as soon as he heard the news from the kids this morning. We discussed it and decided we needed to call the police and report it.

At first the police officer didn't understand the situation. She assumed the dog was a mutually owned dog between the kid's mother and my husband. She assumed they had recently split up and that the dog was owned by them together. She tried telling my husband that there wasn't anything she could do and that there wasn't anything wrong with her taking the dog. He right away had to correct her. He let her know that they had not been "together" for almost 10 years! The dog was ours and we got her about a month ago. The kid's mother never owned the dog. He informed her about the threatening phone message the kid's mother had left on his cell phone and then the message after that apologizing for threatening him and saying she was going to take the dog.

So far we do not have out dog back. We felt calling the police and reporting this theft was the best message we could send to the children. We do not feel the children should be allowed to see their mother make demands on something and when she doesn't get it, to just go ahead and take it anyway. This message she was sending the kids is a very strong message that it is ok to just take something you want even if it isn't yours and you do not have permission to do so. My one stepdaughter didn't feel it was a problem. She got very angry at us this morning when we said we needed to call the police. I sure hope this situation works out for the better. In the past when we have had to call the police for things my step children's mother has done, she has gone nuts and has tried getting back at us and has tried making our lives a living hell. It really is unfortunate she made this move since over the course of the past few years things have really settled down between our two households. It was best for the kids and for both families.

What do you think?


Robin McCoy said...

I think you handled it perfectly responsibly and it was the only 'right' action to take. The children will learn from this and I am sure that the one that got angry is only just afraid for her mother. :( It is a very sad and stupid thing to pull though. And from an adult!

Anonymous said...

That really stinks. I agree I think you handled it correctly and she's sending the wrong message to the children. What makes her think she can just take your dog? What if it was a car or something else? She'd have no right to take that, so how is a dog different?

Sorka said...

Though I may have tried to solve the problem with her first, I do think it was right to call the police. It is a theft. Perhaps a call to the local ASPCA will get better quicker results.. I do fear what will happen to the dog..

cre8tivkj said...

Mmm, the ASPCA, we hadn't thought of that! Thanks!

Little Ol' Liz said...

My gut tells me you did it right. The Other Woman is a nutjob who doesn't realize that one of her children is embarrassed by her actions, and feels the need to look out for her wellbeing. It's sad, really, but every family situation has one pot-stir-er. Your kids will see this as they age and follow the example you and their father have set for them. I'm guessing the children are with you for a very good reason. The dog should, and probably will be back too.