This was in Walton County, Fl. Maybe 1987, after I had come back from Iowa and just before moving into the beach house in Gulf Trace with T.
T knew quite a few people in the area--I think maybe she'd grown up in the northeast, or maybe in many places--(her father was a career Air Force man and had flown fighter jets in Vietnam)--but her parents owned a place up in Baker, Florida and she had been living/working along the beach for quite some time. Anyway, for whatever reason, she wanted to stop in and see some guy who lived up among the red-dirt roads along the south side of the bay. And, so we did.
The only thing, when we got there, this guy was not home. And the bad thing was, there in his yard inside a chicken-wired compound, were dead and dying puppies. I mean a whole litter of puppies--and not just newborns, but maybe a few weeks or months old--either dead or in the process of dying. At least a dozen decent-sized puppies. They looked well-fed, had healthy coats, but there was something more-than-obviously very wrong going on.
It was not a pretty sight.
T was especially dismayed. I don't recall if the mother dog was there among the puppies, but here we were in the heat and at a strange house along the back roads along the bay and there were these dying and already dead puppies . . . What more can I say?
I know T called the guy's phone after we got home (no cell phones then) and left a message. I know he called her back--or maybe we saw him somewhere a few weeks later, I don't recall though it seems like I saw his face. Anyway, he apologized but did not explain why they had died or were dying or what he had done about the whole sad ordeal. Doubt it was poison and more likely some disease due to the puppies never taken to a vet or some such. I don't know.
I don't think about it much.