Click on the photos, see who sent them and read little stories about the animals
Fun animal pictures
My late German Sheppard mix Lucky.
This story will be added to the new book, a collection of short stories by author and poet friends.
As I pulled into my backyard from my driveway one day, I saw a pitiful-looking dog sitting close to my back door. She was very skinny and sick-looking, ribs visible out under her thinning coat. I got out of my car, took a few steps toward her while cooing reassuringly. She watched me intently with her warm chocolate eyes, sizing me up. I stopped a few feet from her and sat down on the patio chair. My hubby opened the door, sat down next to me.
“Where did you get this dog?” I asked.
“She just showed up about an hour ago. No idea where she came from.”
After a short time, the dog came close, put her head on my lap. I patted her for a while. I could feel bumps on her back and sides. I parted her hair and saw old and fresh bruises on her. “Where did you come from? Who did this to you?” I asked, feeling great sadness for the poor animal.
Hubby went inside, grabbed bowls of food and water. He placed them close to the dog. She started eating while keeping a wary eye on us. When she was finished, I invited her in. She wouldn’t come inside, so I brought a blanket out and made her a temporary bed on the patio.
The next morning she was still there, so we fed her. I made posters and hubby posted them in the stores and post office.
When nobody called to claim her after three days, we decided to keep her. We took her to our veterinarian.
The vet examined her, took some blood for testing and the next day called us with the results, “She is in bad shape I’m afraid. She has heartworms and Lyme disease. The treatment will be long and very costly.”
We talked it over and decided to take her for the treatment. The next day we took the dog to the animal hospital where she stayed for five days getting antibiotics and chemotherapy infusions.
We named her Lucky. She was very weak when we brought her home, but after a few days she started eating better, playing and gaining weight. We noticed that she was afraid of leather boots and if we had a stick or broom in our hands, she cowered. My hubby stopped wearing his boots.
Lucky seemed healthier and happier with every passing day, although she had some limitations. She couldn’t run more than a few feet without gasping for air. She loved to be close to us when we were outside, but she refused to step into the house. Hubby built a house for her close to the back door; we padded the inside with thick carpet. Lucky claimed her new home happily. We tried putting a collar on her, but she became very nervous. We abandoned the idea of keeping her tied up. She never went close to the end of the driveway, but she started visiting the neighbors on our side of the highway. They didn’t mind. Moreover, they began looking forward seeing the sweet dog every day.
One morning I went outside to have my coffee on the patio. I found a sweater by the chair that I didn’t recognize. Lucky was lying next to the sweater, wagging her tail happily.
I patted her head, asking, “Where did you get this?” She just looked at me with her big brown eyes.
The next day I found a pair of jeans on the patio, the following day some bed sheets and a motorcycle helmet. Her collection pile grew and we didn’t know what to do.
“How can you make a dog understand that stealing is not okay?” Hubby scratched his head.
We couldn’t find a solution, so we just kept hoping she would stop. We got into the habit of going from door to door with her stolen goods in the neighborhood every few days. We apologized and returned the boots, gloves, screwdrivers, flowerpots and all other small things she stole. The neighbors understood, they kind of made a game out of coming to our patio looking for their missing items.
This went on for about a month. On Thanksgiving morning I saw Lucky dragging something big and heavy tied in a shopping bag. What now? I thought. I went closer to discover a half-thawed turkey inside when I heard my neighbor’s shout coming toward us.
“Okay, Lucky, I will draw the line here. You stole my turkey off the table!”
Lucky touched the neighbor’s knee with her nose. The neighbor patted her on the head, “Sorry, Lucky, you’re a good dog. I didn’t mean to shout at you.”
Then she turned to me. “Perhaps it was her way of paying you back.”
From that day on, we never had to return stolen goods to our neighbors, as if Lucky understood that stealing is not acceptable.
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