The last thing we needed was another puppy.
This whole day seems like a blur. I woke up, ate breakfast, read the sports page, took a shower. And (snap!) I have two puppies. It all happened so fast, I’ve forgotten my own name.
The puppy’s name is Otis Campbell. He is black, with white socks, and a snow-white belly. He is part Labrador.
Otis has the disposition of your classic dog. Calm. Quiet. Loyal. Big eyes. He has a sixth sense for things like human emotion, basic spirituality, and how to rip stuffing from residential sofas.
It all started when my wife and I visited a puppy adoption fair today. This was a bad idea.
There were several cars in the parking lot. And inside were people from all walks of life.
A young couple in Spandex workout attire wandered the cell blocks. They poked fingers through cages. They spoke in high-pitched voices.
A red headed little boy held a terrier mutt who looked
like a malnourished Benji.
“He likes me, mom,” said the boy. “He licked me, look! He likes me.”
A young woman and her daughter sat in a kennel with a puppy so skinny you could see its skeleton. It was missing hair, and looked sick.
I asked about this dog.
“Yeah, he’s sweet,” said one volunteer. “He came to us half-starved.”
This upsets me.
There were dogs with names like “Pete,” “Sam,” “Duke,” and “Scruffy.” They watched me walk by with wide eyes and sad stares.
Many of these pups will not be adopted, the volunteers tell me. Many stay in shelters long enough to learn to prefer sleeping in concrete corners.
“Please, mom,” said the redhead again. “He’s so pretty, I promise I’ll take care of him.”
The mother shook her head. She said, “Put him down, I said…