It Takes a
Community and Collaboration
is in the DNA of the Los Angeles
No Kill Movement
BY LISA AVEBURY
PHOTOS BY DAVID YOUNG-WOLFF
In 1989, I had been in Los Angeles less than a year. I was fresh out of college, knew
only one person, and felt ungrounded. On a particularly lonely day, an old friend
showed up—one who, in this lifetime; chose to wear a dog suit.
When his eyes connected with mine I could feel that he had been waiting for me to
show up. The people at the store told me he wasn’t well and would need an operation to live a long life. They also mentioned they would “give me a good deal” since
they wanted him out. In that moment none of it mattered to me. He was my friend
and needed me as much as I needed him.
He was taken out of a cage too small for a six month old dog to be living in so that
he could meet me in person. In no time, my black pants were covered in white fur.
His immediate and exuberant acceptance of me only seemed to confirm my feelings
that we were meant to be together. It was the first time since leaving home that I
felt a sense of connection to anything in LA. I named him Merlin, and snuck him
into my no-pets building, telling the manager I was watching him temporarily for a
friend. Once the lease was up, I gave notice and we never looked back. >>