We’ll come back for you.

”Please wait. We’ll come back for you.”
These are the words owners tell their pets when they leave them at ARK.
But we know that they won’t keep their promise.


Yesterday, Bokuzen was rehomed.
Bokuzen came to ARK about two and a half years ago. As a stray puppy, he was named “Bokuzen” and taken care of by some people. But they could not have a pet in the place where they were living. One day, Bokuzen was captured by the hokensho. His caretakers got him out of the hokensho, but because they couldn’t take care of Bokuzen they brought him from far-off Hiroshima to ARK in Osaka.


At ARK, we continued to call Bokuzen by the name that his caretakers had given him. Many times his caretakers came from far away to visit Bokuzen and we could tell that he was very close to them. But suddenly his caretakers stopped coming. The staff got into the habit of saying, “His caretakers have stopped coming, haven’t they…” Because this happens often we just gave up on his caretakers. However, Bokuzen is an extremely wary dog so we had trouble recommending him to families looking to adopt. We realized that Bokuzen would probably not be rehomed and he would have to spend the rest of his life at ARK.


”Please wait. We’ll come back for you.”
After two and a half years, yesterday that promise was kept. His caretakers had moved into a place that allows animals and had come from far-off Hiroshima to pick him up. Slowly the expression on Bokuzen’s faced softened, and the blank in time that he spent at ARK was soon forgotten.
(Unfortunately he’s scared of cameras so we couldn’t get any good pictures…)


”Please wait. We’ll come back for you.”
Although they can’t understand the words, animals understand through feelings, and wait with the belief that their owners will be back.
I think that you shouldn’t make promises that you can’t keep, and you shouldn’t back out of your promises.
People are surrounded by various circumstances and there are many times when things just don’t go well no matter how hard we try. I don’t mean to blame the people who under overwhelming circumstances must part with their pets. But I stand on the side of the animals that are left behind so in all cases I see things from their side.

The anxious eyes of the animals that are left in an unfamiliar place without knowing why; the animals that are reunited with their former owners during a visit and who try to relay their joy and love using their entire bodies; and the shutting out of feelings in the hunched backs of the animals whose owners have left them once again.


Some owners come to visit many times. Some never come again.
Some of the animals become overexcited and then extremely sad after a visit from their owner that they get sick. In such cases I would like to tell those people not to come. Of course some of the animals appreciate repeated visits and look forward to them.


Bokuzen, you are hope for animals at ARK.
With more cases like you, we can have hope for the future.
We can learn about strength, hope and unchanging love from the promise that your caretakers made to you. No, we can’t call them your caretakers anymore. They are now your mother and father.

Ms. Tsuda, who trains dogs at ARK, lost her beloved dog, Dobby, at the young age of two to acute kidney failure. Dobby originally came from ARK and he assisted Ms. Tsuda with dog socialization training at ARK, as well as many other services. His hard work will always be remembered. His hospitalization diary will be of help to those involved with animals. Please click the link below to read more.

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