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Man Unable to Carry Dying Dog Down Mountain. Forced to Leave Her to Survive Storm

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The 24/7 news cycle — that endless churning maelstrom of facts and figures that filters to us through cable news and social media — has desensitized many against man’s cruelty to his fellow man.

But judging from the recent backlash against a Scottish hiker, people are plenty irked by animals put in peril.

Forty-one-year-old Paul Finnegan from Shotts, Scotland, didn’t plan for his jaunt up a 3,000-foot mountain on Jan. 14 to go wrong.



He also never wanted to put his beloved 12-year-old Border Collie named Meg at risk.

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But when the wind whipped up and rain began to pelt down, Finnegan knew he needed to get to ground level ASAP. He and a friend who was with him tried their hardest to carry Meg down the mountain.

But soon, Meg’s legs gave out, and the pair of hikers were quickly growing exhausted as they tried to carry her.



It quickly became apparent that the old dog wasn’t going to make it — and that Finnegan himself might not if he didn’t get moving.

So unable to get the dog down the mountain, Finnegan made the agonizing decision to leave her behind to survive the storm.

The recriminations started not long after that.

One of Finnegan’s family members posted a request for help in finding Meg to Facebook.



After describing the situation, Holli McGowan wrote, “Does anyone know who I can call for help or anyone know any people who does [sic] these rescues for animals?”

Social media immediately erupted with horror and began shaming Finnegan for his actions.

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“Anybody who knows him please tell him what a vile person he is,” user Heidi Blasius wrote. “He doesn’t deserve the love of a dog.”

A woman named Karen Mills also commented, “That poor dog would never have left his side if it was him that was hurt. He should be prosecuted for abandonment and neglect.”

Did Finnegan face a decision without any right answer?

According to McGowan, Finnegan spent the night in his car and immediately returned to search for Meg, eventually being joined by volunteers. Sadly, after five days of searching, Meg was found dead.

Andy Ravenhill of Oban Mountain Rescue Team said that criticism of Finnegan was overblown.

However, the Scottish Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals conducted an inquiry into his actions.

What do you think, readers? Did Finnegan face a decision without any right answer or was the terrible situation one of his own making?

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A graduate of Wheaton College with a degree in literature, Loren also adores language. He has served as assistant editor for Plugged In magazine and copy editor for Wildlife Photographic magazine.
A graduate of Wheaton College with a degree in literature, Loren also adores language. He has served as assistant editor for Plugged In magazine and copy editor for Wildlife Photographic magazine. Most days find him crafting copy for corporate and small-business clients, but he also occasionally indulges in creative writing. His short fiction has appeared in a number of anthologies and magazines. Loren currently lives in south Florida with his wife and three children.
Education
Wheaton College
Location
Florida
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Entertainment, Faith, Travel




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