For the Love of Our Pets
All they want is food, water, and to be loved… oh, and to be let outside to, uhm, well, you know… for relief
Growing up in a family with six kids, we were always surrounded by all manner of pets — dogs, cats, chickens, rabbits — you name it, one of us probably owned it at some time or another during our childhood.
One notable pet we all claimed as “my dog” was a German Shepherd mix we named Buddy. He was as gentle as they come, especially around kids. He loved to be petted and have his tummy rubbed.
Each day, when we came home from school, he would crazily wag his tail, shaking his entire 130-pound torso from side to side as he walked slowly to greet us. He would howl his delight to finally see us home again.
Regrettably, Buddy liked to chase cars and buses, a habit that ultimately led to his demise. I buried him in the side flower garden of our back yard, which was one of his favorite sites to lay down and nap.
Another standout pet was Rasputin. He wasn’t anything special to look at, just a mutt who actually adopted us. He could always be seen roaming the neighborhood freely, looking mangy, a bit worse for the wear and tear of not having anyone care for him.
One day, we decided to give him a bath and feed him some leftover table scraps, and that was all it took for him to claim us. He literally dogged us day and night, never leaving the back porch, and always looking for a handout. He was never allowed inside the house because, as Mom told us, he came from somewhere in the neighborhood and his owners were probably searching for him.
Had he not been so friendly and receptive to petting, he could easily have been passed off as a street dog. But you could tell he had been groomed and provided for in the past because of his docile manner around humans.
Rasputin had a habit of being underfoot all the time. He liked to follow my father everywhere as Dad went about his outdoor activities. He would always get in the way of whatever…