The Lost Puppy
“For the one who brought me back after I had given up.
Whether I wanted it or not.”
I am a puppy. My name is, well, I don’t exactly have a name…yet. Nobody’s ever given me one, but you could. You could! You could! You could! I’m so excited to see you because I know that you’re the one who came to get me out. When the nice people came and rescued me from the side of the road, I was really scared, but they cleaned me and fed me. Now all I need is a home. I don’t even know what a home is, but everybody keeps talking about finding me one, so I know it’s going to be great! Take me home! Take me home! Take me home!
“He has too much energy for us.”
Oh, you’re a new person. I’m really excited to see you. I will try not to jump around and scare you because even though I’m really really really excited to see you, I’m trying to not have too much energy. Ooooo, your taking me out of the cage!?! I get to go outside!?! Sunlight! Smells! Wow, this tree smells amazing…and now I have to pee. Woah that fence post over there is great. There was a cat here! Right here! It went this way. Squirrel!?! Bark! Bark! Bark!
“He’s too loud for us.”
Ok, don’t jump around, even if it feels great, because then I have too much energy. Obviously, people don’t want a dog that guards the lawn, so even if something comes too close, don’t bark. Ok. Here comes a new family…and they brought a small one! I love small ones! I’m a small one! Well, not as small as I was when I got here, but I’m not a big one yet. Ok small one, let’s play. Wow, you found a stick. That’s the coolest trick I’ve ever seen. What are you going to do with the stick now? You threw it!?! Why would you ever do that? Poor stick. I’ll go get it. You want the stick back? I think not! You threw it last time! You didn’t want the stick so now it’s mine. Grrrrrrrrrrr.
“He’s not good with kids”
Boy I messed up. I thought I had that last one in the bag. I thought we were having so much fun. Now, anytime a family comes in with a little one and they start looking at me, the rescuer says something and they keep walking and don’t come back. I don’t understand. I thought I had been playing. Why doesn’t anybody want me anymore?
* * *
Today a family came in and I didn’t even get up. Why bother, they had a little one. Sometimes, at night, when all the rescuers are gone, I bark. I bark just to remember what it feels like to bark. Something is changing. My barks aren’t as loud as they once were. I’d rather just lay there and sleep than…well that’s just it. There isn’t much else to do.
* * *
I don’t know how long it’s been since…well now. I don’t even know what to base it on. Do I base it on the day that I was rescued or from the last day I went outside? Maybe the last time someone came to see me? Or, better yet, how about the day I gave up? I know that I’m going to be one of the dogs that leaves with the rescuers instead of a family. I don’t know why, I just get a bad feeling about it.
Hey, someone’s opening my door. I didn’t even know anybody was there. It’s a guy. Oh! MY! GOD! He smells like BACON! Oh, I just want to lick you to death; I don’t care if you don’t taste as good as you smell. You want to take me outside!?! What is that yellow thing in your hand? I want to see it. You threw it!?! Oh, it’s a ball. I’d only heard stories about these. Wait this process seems familiar. You’re going to want this back, aren’t you? What if I bring it back for you, what happens then? You threw it again…and again…and AGAIN…AND AGAIN!!! This is the best game ever! Oh, I love you. Did I just say that? This is the best day ever. I never want this to end. I had totally given up and then you showed up and taught me how to bark again.
Right after that, the rescuers took me back and gave me a bath while you signed some papers. They took me into a part of the building I had never seen before. At first I was really scared, but you were there. I stuck right by your side like glue for the rest of the time we were in that place because you weren’t scared at all. After that we went for a car ride. I put my head out the window and you thought that was the funniest thing you’d seen all day. We rode for a while and then we stopped at a building that smelled a lot like you. You looked at me and said, “we’re home.” Later I would find out that my name is Roy. I know this because when I got in the trash and got that white thing that was covered in blood that your girlfriend didn’t want anymore, you said, “Damnit Roy,” and laughed about it. People will never really understand the power behind the label “home” because most of them have always had one. As a dog, not only can I fully understand what “home” is, I know that it smells like bacon.