For Those Who Need to Read This


Sharon’s  note: This isn’t my normal type of story, but I saw something that reminded me of this today, and thought others might like it. Warning: Story is real, and might prove that humanity is worth saving.


So, our local animal shelter is very aggressive about getting homes for their animals, and I wholly approve. Anytime there’s an official gathering of people that will let them, they’re right there with a selection of dogs. Each Saturday, they show up to the mall and tempt every person they see to come over and pet the puppies. (All dogs are puppies, no matter the age, and moreover, all puppies are good dogs. I will hear no argument against this, and will die on this hill if necessary.)

The day in question, I had allowed myself to be conned into coming over to pet the various pups. One of the volunteers (who could have sold water to a dying man) was trying to convince me that I really could use an adorable old bulldog in my life. I resisted the urge, but barely. He was truly adorable.

A couple came up with a small boy. I’m not great at guessing ages, but I’d say he was around three. The couple were immediately drawn to a yellow lab mix. It was large and calm, with excellent manners. The dad seemed to really hit it off with the lab, and tried to convince the boy to come over and pet it. The boy did not seem impressed, and refused to come anywhere near the dog. I don’t think he was afraid of it, he just didn’t like it. After a while the dad gave up, and he and the mom started talking to one of the volunteers about adoption.

There were a few other dogs available that day, one of which might have been an animated mop head. By mop head, I mean the dog was small, a dirty gray color, and might have had a face under the massive amount of yarn-like fur, but I couldn’t tell for certain.

As the parents were distracted, the boy wandered over to the other dogs. He and the mop head met eyes, and came to a kind of silent consensus. You know, the type small children and animals excel at. They both headed over to the corner, cuddled into a ball, and fell asleep. The parents noticed this, and I watched looks of pure bafflement settle over their faces. They whispered to each other for a moment, and the mom settled into resignation, while the dad looked absolutely crestfallen. 

The dad returned the leash of the lab, and they told the volunteer that they would be adopting the mop head instead, because their son had made the decision, so that was that. A happy ending for all. 

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