Taz, we hardly knew yer….

Taz, “we hardly knew yer”

… to slightly paraphrase the old tune. As this is a sort of eulogy, I am allowed some latitude.

West Hollywood is a town full of single people, many of whom have loved and loving animal companions. The variety of such roommates is quite interesting. Many years ago, a neighbor had a duck living with him, and the two would make a daily walk around the block. My young boys were always fascinated with Dave and his quacking pal. He also carried a gorgeously colored parrot on his shoulder. But most people have dogs, and many have cats.

Carleton Cronin
Carleton Cronin

Our house has been blessed with some wonderful animals. Sadly, two of them were killed on our street. Peripatetic pussycats and curious canines can often wander into harm’s way with fatal results. “This is not Kansas anymore, Dorothy”, and it may not even be West Hollywood anymore. We are a “pass-through” community with thousands of vehicles whipping through our streets every day. By and large, the drivers seem to care only about a rapid transit of the city, caring little about their surroundings, the pedestrians and the speed of their vehicles. Coupled with the amount of construction equipment in the neighborhood, this makes for a dangerous passage for those animals that do wander.

Chequers was a tough little cat who whelped a litter of six in our bedroom closet. She lived to be seven years old before she was struck by a car. Jenny, a golden retriever was hit by a VW bug on Robertson as she slipped her leash to run across the street to greet one of my boys. The driver stopped a block away, got out and looked back where two men from the Glass Garage were picking Jenny up. She got back into her car and left. (Just passing through, thank you.) The men took Jenny up to Doc Miller, the precursor of VCA.

It is quite a shock to find a beloved animal maimed and bloody – and so close to home. That’s how Taz was found yesterday morning. I have not yet spoken to his companion but I can be assured that he is heartbroken. We were just beginning to accept him into the neighborhood mix. Our old Romeo, about 16 years old, had a brief territorial dispute with Taz, and they kept a distance from each other. Not so fortunate another time, Taz sustained severe injuries when he encountered a disagreeable dog. It certainly isn’t easy trying to establish in a new area.

He was an unusual animal, striking, a cat species only recently recognized as a separate breed. A cross between a serval (African wildcat) and a domestic cat, Taz was a long-legged beauty. His coloring was remarkable and unforgettable. I formally met him in his house, and he was calm, curious, welcoming and affectionate. A lovely animal. We’ll miss him – even before we got to know him.

This is a cautionary tale as well as a farewell. I feel that the city is not a welcoming place for companion animals any more. We’re too busy a place; our parks are too small for running, and our traffic and general bustle make it decidedly difficult to keep our animals safe and sound. However, we’ll not give up, and we’ll love with these animals we have “domesticated” and come to care for so very much. That is one of the better characteristics of our “humanity.”

0 0 vote
Article Rating

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

6 Comments
Newest
Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Ida Claire
Ida Claire
4 years ago

Woody your points are spot on & I agree with you as usual

A Pet's POV
A Pet's POV
4 years ago

It would seem that the point of the article was compassion for a lovely neighborhood pet and illustrating the perilous times in which they live. Why are they perilous? Because we as humans often have little regard for the exponential effects of our selfish actions. Pets too often have become the senseless hostages of humans because of a “need for companionship” with little regard for the setting. This often one sided perception leaves the dog or cat in a life of unnatural restriction often is not beneficial to their general health and well being. Imagine yourself in a life of… Read more »

Woody McBreairty
Woody McBreairty
4 years ago

I don’t understand the premise of this article unless it’s to justify human betrayal of their pets’ safety. I can think of no reason why innocent animals should be allowed to “wander into harm’s way” if they are under the care of responsible adults. I have two beautiful cats which I adopted to live safely in our home because I love them & enjoy their company. They have never been outside, outside their carrying crates, & by no means have ever been allowed to roam the neighborhood alone, putting their lives at risk. People make whatever excuses they please to… Read more »

Brian Holt
Brian Holt
4 years ago

Life is messy. And not all animals can be kept perfectly leashed at all times and/or indoors. Many would argue they are not meant to be either. Bless Taz and those who loved him.

Larry Block.
Larry Block.
4 years ago

Nice article that hits home. Coco Bean was killed on Huntley drive one March day years ago at the 6-7pm hour when the sun was going down and it had been raining…the roads were slick and a car ran the stop sign. Heard a screech and that was that. Coco was following her other daddy who ran out to get something from the car. But the car never stopped,.. it was horrific to lose her in that manner, she left us while in my arms on the way up the street to TLC. I still get chills thinking of that… Read more »

Alison
Alison
4 years ago

If you treat your companion animals as you would your child, then all will be well. If you have cats, keep them inside or walk them on leashes or harness as you would a dog. I see way to many people walking dogs “off leash” on our streets. They are just asking for heartache and guilt. Our City is no different than any other. Our companion animals are welcome here. Just be a good companion TO your animal and it will be fine. Screw the rules..WeHo Park is a big place…let the dogs run cuz I’m sure the very expensive… Read more »

Click to Hide Advanced Floating Content

0 0 vote
Article Rating
6
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x