Try as he might, the Dog had never been truly content with his lot. He had lived a longish life and although he’d never bothered to learn counting, he knew that it was a good few years.
He had spent this life with a variety of people, good and bad: a family with a brattish Baby who had constantly pulled his tail, chewed his ear and banged him on his nose with a toy truck with sharp edges; a Society Lady who had kept him shut up in a penthouse apartment except for short, one-a-week walks round the block with the Butler; and, most recently, by an elderly Hobo who shared with him his bed (a draughty, leaky barrel by a railway siding) and his food: chuck-outs from smart restaurants and hand-outs from the Salvation Army.
Then, one day, the Dog woke up and the Hobo didn’t. The old tramp was cold and stiff and the Dog realised that another chapter of canine life was at an end.
It was only a matter of days before the Dogcatchers were after him and his doggy instinct told him that whatever the future now held it was, in all likelihood, not going to be good.
Nevertheless, he decided, he was going to give the men with their nets and leashes a good run for their money and he did.
He raced up and down town, tore here, there and everywhere: digging up flowerbeds; chasing cars, cats and chickens; knocking over trashcans; barking outside hospital windows; shaking rain off his fur in crowded hotel lobbies; leaving muddy paw-prints on newly washed doorsteps; frightening horses and startling old ladies; biting bicyclists and puncturing babies’ balloons.
They caught him at last, needless to say, but as they slammed the barred door on him in the Dog Pound and a man with rubber gloves and a syringe loomed up out of the darkness, he knew that at least he had, finally and very decidedly had his day --- and enjoyed it!
© Brian Sibley 2006