Goddamn dog.

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She sprawled in front of every door you wanted to open. Blocked the stairs when your arms were full of groceries.  Tripped you in the kitchen when you were carrying hot pans.  Kicked you with her back feet when you crowded her space on the couch or bed.  Dripped toilet water from her muzzle onto the bathroom floor.   Licked dirty dishes in the dishwasher with a fervor generally reserved for religious zealots.

Devoured grass and sticks and clumps of dirt and the occasional plate of leftover beef stroganoff; and then, in a house full of hardwood and tile, threw up on the rugs.

Goddamn dog, we said.

She raced in enthusiastic circles in the yard.  A seventy-five pound bullet that knocked you off your feet if you weren’t paying attention.

She dove passionately into the pool.  A seventy-five pound, web-footed shark with toenails that left bright red scratches on the backs of unsuspecting swimmers.

Chased balls and boys, passers-by and neighborhood cats with equal measures of zeal and futility.

She once caught a sparrow and snapped its neck.  A National Geographic-worthy moment of glory in her early years for which she had no apparent remorse.

She dislocated her tail with its unrelenting wagging.

She decimated an inheritance’s worth of Beanie Babies – a lobster, a tiger, a platypus, a frog, a zebra, a monkey, a bear, a bee and, if memory serves, one shaped like Patrick from SpongeBob…a succession of stuffed creatures soaked by dog saliva, maimed and eventually stripped of the hard plastic beads that comprised their innards – which then embedded in the bottom of bare feet when stepped on.

She plowed through sleeping teenagers in search of pizza crusts.  Stepped unabashedly on Xbox controllers.  And blocked the TV at critical plot junctures and fourth-down plays.

She gave zero fucks.

Goddamn dog, we said.

She embraced all who crossed our threshold with equal passion. She did not discriminate in her affection between family, friends or those with homicidal tendencies.  Scratch her belly when she flopped at your feet and you were more than welcome to steal everything in the house and leave its inhabitants for dead.

She loved everyone and everything with equanimity.  Cardboard tubes and tug-of-war and the sun and the snow and the rain.  And, less poetically, the occasional squirrel or deer carcass found in the woods.

She didn’t judge us for buying cheap dog food or forgetting to refill her water bowl. Or that time that we accidentally left her in the garage overnight.

And with the patience of a Buddhist monk kneeling in the snow, she tolerated the cat we brought home on a whim.


And then yesterday she collapsed at the front door.

Goddamn dog, we said.

For the last time.  After thirteen years.

Now there’s just that bastard cat.

Latest Comments

  1. Carey Panlener says:

    You forgot that “damn dog” left her footprints all over your hearts…. :’)


  2. kfeldkamp@comcast.net says:

    Sooooo sorry and sad! We have been through this too with a Goddamn dog. 😦 Karol


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