Update: DAS wants Observer readers to know that any goods or money donated on behalf of Bentley will, for the most part, go to DAS animals.
"Someone has apparently misunderstood. The [Amazon] wishlist is for the shelter dogs, it's not for Bentley. There are a few items on there for Bentley, but the majority are for the shelter," said DAS social media coordinator Rebecca Poling in a voicemail.
DAS included the Amazon wishlist link in the Facebook comments section of a photograph of Nina Pham and Bentley to let viewers know how they could help the dog. Nice to know that throwing a picture of Pham and Bentley up, and hashtagging Ebola, has been great for DAS donations -- although CBS reports that the shelter has suspended the donations request for Bentley.
Incidentally, we assumed that most readers would grasp, as we did, that the lawn mower was for the shelter, not Bentley himself, since his legs are too short to reach the handle.
We understand you just fine.
Original post: The last few days have been filled with dark news: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed on Sunday that Nina Pham is Dallas' second Ebola patient, having been one of the nurses to Thomas Eric Duncan. And the World Health Organization announced Tuesday that the fatality rate for Ebola patients has risen to 70 percent. More than 10,000 people per week could be contracting the virus in West Africa by December 1.
But Dallas Animal Services knows what's really the crucial issue here: Pham's dog, Bentley. Poor Bentley, a King Charles spaniel, has been removed from Pham's apartment an placed in an "undisclosed location," according to the city of Dallas. DAS has launched a donation drive for Bentley the Dog, to ease his transition and provide some small comforts in his hour of need.
As a part of the drive, Bentley has an Amazon wish list for community members to contribute to his cause. DAS provided the list to readers on its Facebook page. Among the items Bentley most desperately wants are:
- Gas Lawn Mower
- Poop Pet Scoop/Spade with Aluminum Handle
- Hamilton Beach Smooth Touch Can Opener (In Black!)
- Fisher-Price Digital Camera (In Pink!)
- Label Printer
- "Mutt" Cookie Assortment in Peanut, Oatmeal Apple & Vanilla, 32 ounces
"If you'd like to help care for Bentley, Nina Pharm's [sic] beloved dog during his Quarantine, please consider donating paper towels, pee pads, toys, and rawhide chewys," DAS appealed on Bentley's behalf.
"How do we send from Canada?!! Can we send in donations towards purchases of these things?" said one eager out-of-towner on the DAS Facebook page. "Let's get this cause national!! Save Bentley!" said another commenter.
"Poor baby. I just read that people go in twice a day to feed him and that's it. No touches or anything. He's got to be so sad and has no clue what's going on. This has to happen for 21 days. He'll need lots of bones. Shared and will donate," said one person. Ten people liked this particular comment, and DAS quickly assured readers that people in hazmat suits would likely be able to pet the dog through their gear. "I sure hope so! Those breeds have bad separation anxiety," fretted a commenter.
But don't worry, Dallas. Bentley is receiving the best possible care from several hazmat-suited volunteers. And if you really want to help the neediest among us, the best thing you could possibly do is get Bentley a lawn mower.