Students should think twice before purchasing pets

I just love Tucson and the university. Any day of the year, you can see abandoned dogs wandering the city and our campus, looking for love and affection. Sure, they may get that temporary love that they are yearning for, but it seems like they are hardly ever adopted. The majority of these dogs are thrown out by UA students. These immature and irresponsible kiddies want something that will love them during the year, but when it comes time to go home to Mommy and Daddy, these dogs are just thrown away.

Personally, I have a dog that is a pure-bred Kerry Blue Terrier. Spencer is the pinnacle of coolness, giving me undivided and total love. My sister Natalie also has a dog, Wylie. Unlike the wonderful life Spencer has had, Wylie is the product of abandonme nt at the UA. Wylie, who also is really cool, is a half-breed - half Coyote and half Siberian Husky. Before my sister was granted custody, Wylie's previous owner found him in a trash dumpster, scrounging for food. Wylie was a little puppy who was just try ing to survive.

Too bad Wylie's savior actually turned out to be the devil himself. Wylie's previous owner used to mentally and physically abuse Wylie, after driving his two other dogs to death. Yep, he was a doggie serial killer. He would leave this small puppy all alon e in the house during the day, and then yell at Wylie if he went to the bathroom. If Wylie 'bothered' him to go to the bathroom or for food, he would throw his shoes at the dog, punch the dog, or otherwise abuse Wylie physically. There are more stories of physical abuse so gross and sickening that people still refuse to tell my sister about them six years later.

By now, I am sure that people are asking: How did your sister get Wylie? Well, when summer rolled around, Wylie's former owner went home (probably to the nether world). And, since his parents did not like dogs, he abandoned Wylie to an empty house. The real savior came along and saved Wylie. My sister broke into the house and rescued Wylie from a life of hell. Maybe the former owner was trying to train Wylie to be one of the hellhounds to protect the domain of Satan himself.

To this day, Wylie is not a completely normal dog. When he lived in Tucson, and someone he did not know came over to the house, Wylie would hide under the bathtub. If Wylie heard a loud noise, he would hide under the bathtub. If anything bothered him, he would always head for that bathtub. Wylie cannot sleep without being next to Natalie. If my sister is not there, like when I dog-sit while my sister goes out of town, Wylie has continual nightmares, crying out in his sleep; he probably dreams about his pa st owner beating him. It's really sad to have to see such a beautiful creature's spirit broken. It is like all we can see with Wylie is the shell of his former self. Although he is a great dog, it would be interesting to see what he would have been like.

The funniest part of the story is that when Wylie's former owner returned from his trip to the other side, he had the balls to go to my sister and demand Wylie. It's funny - a person who would abuse Wylie to submission was demanding him back from a person who would do anything for the dog.

But, the sad moral of the story is that Wylie is not much different from many of the other dogs that are adopted at the University of Arizona. They are adopted by kids who have no semblance of responsibility and end up abusing their dogs. If the dogs do n ot die from the abuse, then they probably die from the abandonment. Tucson's summers are hard enough for people. Think of the hardships on an animal that has no sweat glands and does not have shelter to go to.

There are very few people like my sister, who open up their homes and hearts to abandoned animals. So grow up and take responsibility for your actions and decisions.

Jeremy Pepper is a philosophy senior. His column appears every week.