Help. That's all that comes to mind, reading about the kidnap and mutilation of a pet tortoise last weekend. I can't stop thinking about how easy it must have seemed to torture a mute animal, one that doesn't scream or yelp, though he certainly struggled.
It was broad daylight. There were witnesses, and more than one assailant. The witnesses are coming forward now, calling the sheriff to report what they saw.
I'm so furious, it takes effort to keep typing. You know what Bob needed more than witnesses after the fact? He needed HELP, someone to shout out that it's wrong to stab a living creature, wrong to drop him, wrong to roll him down a hill. He needed someone to call the sheriff as is happened, not days later.
HELP, people. HELP.
African spur-thighed tortoises are social creatures, more than one might expect. Bob was social enough to coax an autistic child to communicate with the outside world--I suppose a "coming out of his shell" image really works here. I've been lucky enough to share a home with a tortoise like Bob for 14 years. The idea of someone trying to pry him out of his shell, slice off his head and legs... I hardly know what to do with these feelings. One little thing I can do is help Bob's family, the Sullivans, with their veterinary expenses. Generously, Jeanie Vaughan of Turtle Dreams is covering Bob's immediate expenses with a loan, which the Sullivans will pay back. I guess writing a check is all I can do to help. But it doesn't make me any less angry.
c/o Turtle Dreams
2298 Feather Hill Road
Montecito, CA 93108-1542