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Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Animal · #1738034
This is the story of my first dog. No dog will ever replace her in my heart as first.

My first dog was Spunky. I got her when I was six.  The year was 1947

My mom said

"Every child should have a dog. Being an only child, Judy should have a companion."

I went to this ladies house, which was 3 blocks away,. to get her cast away dog. It was the farthest I had been allowed by


"Her name is Daisy, she is a year old, she is half dashund and half bulldog." You must feed her steak" the lady said ” I only

feed her steak."

" Yes maam, and thank you for the dog."

"Don't forget now, only steak!"

My greatest fear came about. I knew I couldn't keep this wonderful gift. We couldn't afford steak for our selves, how could we

afford steak for a dog. She was so warm. Her little body was tightly packed like a sausage. She had beautiful brown eyes.

Her fur was short multi-colored leaning towards brown, with gold and yellow and red. She nuzzled my neck, gave me a kiss

with the tip of her tongue, and cuddled up in my arms as we trudged home. My feet were dragging, because I knew once my

mother heard she only ate steak, it was all over.  I would have to take her back.

    When we got home my Mom said  " Don't worry about it. That dog will eat anything when she gets hungry. What are you   

going to call her?"

    "The lady said her name was Daisy."

    "No Judy it is your dog, what do you want to call her?"

  "Spunky, Mom, I want to call her Spunky."

  Over the next few years Spunky was my faithful companion. Everywhere Judy went, Spunky was there too. She slept at the

foot of my bed. She heard all my problems. Her hair got wet down a lot by my tears. We laughed a lot together. I read her my

poems. Spunky was a great critic, she always appreciated my writing. We loved running together. We walked to the beach

together, Spunky could swim as good as I could. When it was cold in the Minnesota winters and my blankets were frozen to

the wall of our travel trailer we lived in, she was there to keep me warm.

  We moved around a lot when I was a kid, my dad would hold down different truck driving jobs and we just followed the

work. I enrolled in school 22 different times before the ninth grade. Old Spunky was right there with me , my only friend and


  I was eight when we lived by the lake in Hopkins, Minnesota. Spunky would lay on the road because the pavement was

warm. During the day it wasn't a well traveled road so we couldn't convince Spunky that it wasn't a good place to lay.  This

woman, driving on the road, thought Spunky was dead and tried to straddle her with her car. Spunky woke up, jumped up

and got hit by the fender. The lady hung around for awhile, to take Spunky to the hospital but we couldn't find her. She was

hiding in the woods. I called and called, it got late and Mom said I had to go to bed. Later that night, I heard whimpering at

the back of the trailer house by my window. Spunky had come home. Her whole side was ripped down in a three cornered

tear. Mom and I jumped in the car. I was holding Spunky In a towel and we drove to the vet.

    "I'm sorry maam, there is not much we can do." Said the doctor.

    "Please try", my mom pleaded" it is a child’s dog."

    I knew I was going to loose my only friend. I was trying to be brave but the tears wouldn't stop. My Mom sat beside me

and  tried to console me, but my heart was broken.

The Doctor came out.

    " We are going to see how this works. You must not let her pull on her stitches. Give her this medicine, and come back

tomorrow if she is still alive.”

    I picked up the lifeless body of my friend and carried her to the car.When we got home I laid her on the bed and I laid down

beside her. I prayed to God. "Please save my dog, she is a good dog. I promise to be good if you only save my dog."

  The next morning I woke up with a wet tongue on my cheek. Spunky had survived the night, she was very weak, but she

was alive.

  When I was nine, we moved to a trailer Park at Medicine Lake, near my Aunt Ruth and Uncle Alan.

  When Spunky came in heat my Mother would keep her in the house and put a diaper on her. This worked for a couple of

years, but eventually she got loose. Spunky was a very short dog. She mated with a very tall black Labrador Retriever. How

was this accomplished ?

    She stood on a hill.

Spunky had 9 puppies, so many for such a little dog, 1 female and 8 males. My mom drowned the female.  “Because you

can't get rid of them.”

  Back then it was a general practice to drown kittens and puppies. Spaying was unheard of. Later my Mom said she wished

hadn’t drown that female because it was the only one that looked like Spunky. In fact they were ugly puppies, some had short

fat bodies and real long legs. Others had large bodies and little short legs. Some had big heads and little bodies. None of

them looked like a real dog, more like cartoon characters.

  About 4 days after the puppies were born. I woke up in the morning and Spunky was stiff, she couldn’t move. Mom and I

rushed her to the Vet and found out the puppies has taken all the calcium out of Spunky’s system. He gave her a shot and us

some medicine and replacement milk for the puppies. He suggested we spay her because she would never be able to carry

puppies again.

  So now we had to hand feed all those puppies. My Aunt Ruth took 4 of them to raise and we babied the other four. They all

lived and got good homes. My Aunt Ruth kept all of the ones she took. Those old pups never got any better looking, but my

Aunt loved them just the same.  She called them Ugly, Metoo, Something Else and What Am I. Strange names for dogs, but

they were all strange looking dogs.

    Spunky came out of it once the pups were taken from her. Mom had her spayed. I washed dished and help the neighbors

clean house help pay to for part of the expense.

  The years went by and Spunky got a little slower and a little older, pretty soon she couldn’t get up the steps of the trailer.

  I was 13 when Mom said “ Judy, this is your dog , so this is your decision. Spunky is getting old and she is hurting. She is

not going to get any better, just worse. We need to put her to sleep, then she won’t hurt any more.”

  I went and hugged my old dog and cried and asked her if she really hurt that bad, and couldn’t she get up and walk for me?

Spunky whimpered and licked my face with the tip of her tongue. I knew I had to put her to sleep. I couldn’t let my best friend

suffer any more. We drove to the vets with her cradled in my arms, my tears wetting her fur. All the way I kept hoping my best

friend would get up and run, but it wasn’t to be. I told Spunky how much I loved her, and there would never be another dog as

great as she was. My mom sat in the car while I carried my friend in and told the Vet to please put my friend to sleep.

” Will it hurt her? I asked.

    “No, she will fall into a gentle sleep and it will be over.” he answered.

  I walked out of the Vet hospital that day a little older and wiser. I buried Spunky down by the lake in her favorite resting spot

in the shade of an old oak tree.

    From that day forward I always buried my own pets . Loved them a lot more. Knowing they couldn‘t last as long as I

would.  My friend, my buddy will always be with me in my heart and soul.

© Copyright 2011 Judy Ball (judyball at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
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