Hello.  My name is Dumb Dog.  I think I had another name once, but it was so long ago, I can’t remember what it was.  I do remember some things about my past.  I remember the warmth of my mommy’s body and my sisters and brothers all chewing on my ears and us playing.  Then I remember the people we lived with putting me and my brothers and sisters in a big box and driving to a parking lot.  They put up a sign.  I think it said ‘free puppies’.  A lot of people came and petted us, and held us.  I got so excited I peed on a little girl.  Her mommy got mad and they put me down.  They took one of my sisters with them and I never saw her again.  The day pretty much went on like that until all my brothers and sisters were gone.  I was the only one left in the box.  I was so lonely.  It was getting dark and I was thirsty and hungry.  I slept for a little while and when I woke up, it was dark.  The people had left.   I was all alone.  I was so scared.


I began to cry.  Then a man came and he shined a light on me.  He touched me, and then went away.  Much later he came back and took me to his house.  I was so excited.  He played with me, but he was so rough that it hurt.  I didn’t want to complain, though.  Little people came in and wanted to hold me.  The man said ok and I was so excited, I peed all over the floor.  The man got mad and really hurt my nose.  Then he put me outside.


I slept on the porch for a long time.  I didn’t really mind.  At least I had water and food most of the time.  And I could go under the porch if it rained or snowed.  The man would come out and play with me sometimes, but he was always so rough.  He wanted me to growl and bite, but I remember mommy telling me that I should not do that.


One summer day it was just so beautiful,  I decided to go exploring.  I guess I wondered too far and some people threw things at me and told me to go away.  When I came home the man got really mad at me.  He said I was worthless, dumb dog.  He put a collar around my neck and a big heavy chain on it.  Then he put a stake in the ground and attached the chain to it.  The chain was so heavy, I could hardly hold my head up.  I really wanted to tell him how sorry I was, but he was so mad. 


I remember very hot summers and cold winters.  The man had made me a dog house, but after awhile, I could hardly squeeze into it.  I would get really thirsty and hungry too, because no one would remember to fill my water or feed me.  I tried chewing on my dog house.  I thought maybe it would make my tummy feel better, but after a few days, the man got mad and threw it away. 


My poop was getting pretty deep too.  I welcomed the snow because it would cover the muck.  But then I would get so cold.  At least I had an endless supply of icees to slurp so I wasn’t thirsty like in the summer.  It didn’t smell in the winter either.


One day I met a new friend.  He saw me on my chain and came right over and nuzzled my nose.  He was so wonderful.  Every day he would come visit and we would play.  He always left just before the man came home, but one day the man got home early.  He yelled at my friend and threw rocks at him.  My friend never came back.  I was so sad and lonely again.


One day I became a mommy.  The man brought me inside with all my babies.  I was so happy.  I got a lot of attention.  Then all of a sudden my babies were gone.   The man put them in a big sack and went away.  I could hear them crying.  I growled at the man and he hit me.  Huh? All those years ago he wanted me to growl and be mean and then I finally get up the courage and he hits me!


With my babies gone, and the door standing open, I had nothing to lose.  I ran for my life.  I ran until I could run no more.  I had no idea where I was, but I didn’t really care. 


I woke up to the soft voice of a lady.  She had set a bowl of water in front of me and some food.  She was so nice.  She explained she could not keep me, but she would take me to a nice place where they would try to find me a forever home.  Later that day, she put me in her car and took me to a nice place that smelled clean but of cats and dogs.  The lady explained this was a veterinary office and the dog doctor would make me feel better.  I was really polite when he poked and prodded and even stuck a needle in me.  Then that lady drove me to a big building where I could here dozens of dogs barking.  WOW!  Friends.  Maybe I would even find my mommy here, or my brothers and sisters.  Maybe my babies were here.  I mean they must be.  There are half the dogs in the world in here. 


I looked really fast as they led me down the row of pens, but I didn’t recognize anybody.  Most everybody was really friendly.  Barking greetings to me.  But it was so noisy, it made my head hurt.   They put me in a pen in the back.  I was alone, but could still see the dog next to me.  We made friends.


I have been here a long time now.  I never saw that nice lady again that said I would find a forever home.  Maybe this is where she meant.  I do have plenty of food and water.  They do let me out in the play yard once a day and some people called ‘volunteers’ come by sometimes and pet me.


Today I heard the people that work here whispering outside my pen.  I had never heard the word ‘euthanasia’ before.  I wonder what it means.  Could I be going someplace wonderful?


The end of this story IS UP TO YOU.   If you have room in your heart and home for a homeless dog, go right now to your animal shelter or humane society.  If you can’t have a pet right now, for what ever reason,  skip that morning Latté and donate that $4 or $5 to a no-kill animal shelter or Rescue Organization.  And if you find yourself with an extra half hour, don’t just sit in front of the TV or computer, go visit the shelter and pet some animals.  They would greatly appreciate the attention.  Like I said, how this story ends is up to you.

Respect my copywrite  Carol Sacher 2004


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