"Good Boy" by Jamie Fouty
You are staring at a box emitting light so I distract you by chewing on your shoelaces. You chase me and even though I get scolded, I have successfully gotten you away from that device and focused on what matters, because I am a good boy.
I don’t understand what you want, but I am trying. My attention span isn’t long but I enjoy our interactions, and the treats. We should do this more often. Your excitement is contagious and it’s the best feeling to make you proud. It may take some time but I will get it, because I am a good boy.
Be patient with me, as I am with you. You are not always timely with food, exercise, coming home, or doing what you say you will, but I forgive you, because I am a good boy.
It’s hard to contain so much energy, you have been away all day and I have been alone and bored! We are finally together; let’s celebrate this life and what it has to offer! You are ignoring me as you go through a routine set of motions, but I persist. You probably had a bad day and I am determined to make it better, because I am a good boy.
The smells are intoxicating and the door was left open, the freedom of running without being restrained is exhilarating! There are so many different ways I want to go and explore, but I break myself away from these wild desires and come back when you call my name, because I am a good boy.
I bark at night because I have better hearing than you and I am protecting my loved ones from danger. Protecting you is more important than how much I dislike being disciplined, because I am a good boy.
I love everyone, but not that person you just brought into the house. Trust me; I am a good judge of character. Listen to what I am telling you, I am a good boy.
I follow you around and inspect your work. It may be annoying and I can get in your way but I want to help you, and chores are always better with a buddy. Besides, I need to ensure you aren’t taking any of my treasures, those are important to me; I don’t steal your things, because I am a good boy.
I wake you up in the mornings with kisses and jumping on you, even though you get upset sometimes, I continue to do it because loved ones should always start the day off with excitement and joy. You are lucky, others don’t have the fortune to start everyday with expressions of happiness and opening their eyes to the blur of pure adoration. I am your fuzzy alarm clock, because I am a good boy.
I introduce you to friends, you’re still my favorite, but it’s fun to make new ones and I am an expert at it. Just don’t leave me behind next time you visit them, because I am a good boy.
I perform all of my tricks in rapid succession, hoping that one of them is what you are requesting of me. I really want what’s in your hand, and I am too excited to focus on specific commands. You are laughing, which is the best sound, I feel your energy and I always want us to be this way! I will continue doing this, because I am a good boy.
We are in the car for so long; you keep saying we are going to vacation. I don’t know where or what that is, but as long as we are together it will be fun. When we arrive, there is water that rolls towards us and open land to run as far as I can see! There are birds to chase, sticks everywhere, and a breeze with more scents than I can take in at once. You are so relaxed, why can’t we stay here forever? You say my tail wags in my sleep, I love it here. We stay in an unfamiliar place; people I remember from when I was younger show up, and there are some new smaller ones too that are my size. I am rambunctious but careful around those that are frail, because I am a good boy.
There are loud noises and bright lights, you all seem excited and happy, but I am scared and shaking. I don’t know what’s happening, but it helps you are with me. I won’t complain I just want it to stop. Don’t leave me alone, I am a good boy.
You drop food on the floor, sometimes you let me have it and sometimes you don’t. I don’t understand the difference, and even though there are items too tempting to resist, I mostly listen, because I am a good boy.
You are upset; I have energy and want to play but I lay next to you instead. I bring you my favorite toy that is crusty with slobber and always cheers me up. While you can’t keep it, you can have it for a while, because I am a good boy.
I get tired faster but I try to keep up with you. If I lay down suddenly while on a walk, it’s only because I don’t feel well. Besides, taking the world in from underneath this tree providing gentle shade is what we should be doing anyways. I make you slow down and enjoy the moment, because I am a good boy.
It’s cold and wet, or sometimes the ground is too hot for my feet. Sometimes it’s dark and you don’t go with me, but I go potty outside anyways, because I am a good boy.
I fall sometimes, and am embarrassed. I get sick and cover it up because I don’t want you to worry; you try to hide the fact we are going to the vet, but I know it. I’m scared but don’t fight you because I am a good boy.
I eat the treat even though I know there are medications hidden inside. I can smell and taste them, but I trust you, and I am a good boy.
My tail thumps the floor when I smell you coming close, I can’t see you very well but I smell the familiar loving scent of comfort and home that is you. I struggle to get up, and it hurts, but I stand on my wobbly legs so you can pet my head without bending down, because I am a good boy.
I am tired, and you are sad, but I won’t show my pain because I love you and I am a good boy.
I need to rest. It’s time. Please help me; I have always been a good boy.
I lick your tears and inhale your scent for the last time as I close my eyes. The weight is lifted and I am free of my difficulties. You will miss me, but remember how I helped you live better. I will wait for you to join me and in the meantime I will plan our new adventures, because I am a good boy.
About the Author: Jamie is an award winning author who works in higher education administration. She survives mostly on coffee, can say the alphabet backwards, and resides in Colorado with a roommate that doesn’t pay rent (Calvin, the dog). Her love of animals has inspired numerous stories, including a novel in the works called Auribus Teneo Lupum, which she hopes to publish soon. For more information on Jamie and upcoming projects, visit: jamiefouty.com