Don’t Let Your Dogs … Be Weekend Cowboys

Don’t Let Your Dog … be a Weekend Cowboy
By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee


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Kissy Fairchild … our sweet Rottie.  Precious Camo (changed to Precious Camie).

When fur parents are at work all week … their dogs are at home resting, waiting for them to get home. All day long, these pets lay, sleep, eat … wait. This goes on for the whole week … and when the weekend comes … the fur parents take their dogs out to exercise, have fun. They become … weekend cowboys!

Your dog has rested all week, while eating … probably putting on extra weight. He may be middle-age. He may be a big dog (though it happens to smaller dogs, also). You don’t notice all these things … you are only looking forward to giving your dog a good time on the weekend … so, he can get ‘good exercise’, have fun.

Too much fun all at once can cause serious injuries. Say, you took your dog to run, jump, romp, play at the park … you could come home with your dog, find that he is limping. That’s a warning sign you should take seriously. This can only become worse if … he has a ruptured cranial cruciate ligament.

A ruptured cranial cruciate ligament … is when the ligament ruptures between the tibia, and the femur. The ligament is a tough band of tissue connecting the two. When it ruptures, the joint becomes unstable, very painful to the dog. If left like that, it leads to degenerative joint disease which is arthritis. The dog begins to limp, and that puts weight, stress on the other leg, hip. That leg, hip could be the next ‘to go’. It’s best to seek medical help to prevent more problems.

Don’t let your dog be a … weekend cowboy. It could cause a serious injury to his legs. Protect your dogs by not over-feeding them until they are overweight … my husband and I have learned this. We don’t let our dogs be weekend cowboys … but, we are guilty of feeding them lots of tidbits from the table … causing excessive weight gain. One doesn’t really notice the weight-gain in dogs … we are happy just to be sharing … out of pure love for them.

Our two dogs love to run, play, jump. Our Rottweiler is a big dog, and he’ll be 5 years old on November 02, 2015. His name is Kissy Fairchild … he loves to run with the dog I rescued on July 04, 2013. Her name is Precious Camo (changed to Precious Camie). Kissy and Camie are happy dogs, have the most loving home. We are rich in love … not money.

Kissy injured his right, hind leg … ruptured cranial cruciate ligament … about a month, or so, ago. He began limping badly … laying down all the time. That wasn’t like him. We weren’t aware of this kind of injury with dogs … so, we thought he’d just simply get better. We were thinking his leg was sore maybe from hitting the side of the pet door when he and Camie ran out it, into their fenced-in yard.

It didn’t get better at all … we noticed he had to ‘hop’ on the left leg, not use his right leg any more than he had to. We knew he had to go to the vet. Our vet, Dr. David Fontenot (Louisburg Veterinary Clinic, Louisburg, North Carolina) diagnosed him. They have just scheduled Kissy’s surgery.

Kissy will have surgery on his right, hind leg on Wednesday, this week, March 25, 2015. He will have the procedure known as TTA (Tibial Tuberosity Advancement). The surgeon will use space-age titanium … this is lighter, thinner, stronger than stainless steel. It’s the newest procedure, considered the best for most dogs.

If you ever had a torn rotator cuff … you already have an idea of what it’s like. It can’t get well by itself … it had to be repaired by surgery. Our dogs aren’t weekend cowboys … they play all through the day, sometimes … playing too hard. Kissy and Camie both were overweight (they are on their diet, now :). As I read to gather more information … I became aware of ‘Weekend Cowboys’ … and thought while writing this article … I would include information about that. Why? Because I believe not everyone is aware of what ‘Weekend Cowboys’ means. I wasn’t.

I share this with you, so … you can be more protective of your precious dogs. If you have a dog, it means you are already a special, caring person. Like me, you want to know, be aware of anything that is good … bad … for your fur babies. So, be aware, when you have free time for your dogs … don’t let them ‘go wild like weekend cowboys’!

All photos of our dogs, article … are owned, written by me … Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee/ @grannygee

He Pulled A Rabbit Out Of The Hat…

He Pulled A Rabbit Out Of The Hat…

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee

Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee… 2013


She sat there, stunned.  No, stunned wasn’t the word.  She was in ‘pure’ shock.  Devastated.  What was going to happen to their dogs?  They were their babies, their life.  They were the only family they had left in their life.  Her only child had died three years ago… she had no one left in her life… only her husband, and three dogs.


She and her husband were traveling down the road.  Her husband was driving.  His cellphone rang… it was the call he’d been expecting.  He was smiling as he pressed the button on his bluetooth, his hands-free device for his cellphone.


He spoke pleasantly into his phone, his face was smiling.  The call he expected, was from a man who had hired him to work locally, making very good money.  He was happy, he could stay close to home, his wife, his dogs.  It meant the world to him.


He’d already met the man… both instantly liked each other.  The man called him over the next several days… and they met again for her husband to give him his driving record, and such.


His driving record was perfect… he was a good driver.  Not only that, he was good with customers… he’d worked in management… so, he knew how to talk to anyone.


She sensed something was wrong… it was taking her husband too long to answer.  She looked over at him… instantly felt sick to her stomach.  Something’s wrong… why does her husband look like that!


Her husband had been driving long-distance for so long… he just wanted to be home.  He’d begun having fears that he might not see home again.


He told her that he didn’t mind telling anyone that he loved being home, loved being with his wife, loved his dogs.  Not only that, he loved to be home in the evenings to drink tea, and watch his favorite tv shows.


This new job meant that his dream to be home … was coming true.  Both felt such happiness, relief.  He’d been out of work for over a month… and they had been having such a hard time.


Bills needed to be paid… groceries needed to be bought… gas was expensive.  Pups needed food… they also, had to buy water by the gallon… they couldn’t drink the water from the tap at their home.


Not only that… rent needed to be paid.  Thankfully, the man they rented their house from… understood.  He was a good man… in fact, he encouraged her husband to come home, get off the road.  The man was their friend, also.  He worried about her husband… he knew she worried about her husband.


So, now… that was the reason he was on the phone.  He’d been hired to drive… and the man was calling him to talk to him about the details.


She saw the smile slip off her husband’s face, heard his voice tell the man, that he understood.  Her husband’s voice was pleasant, though she knew something was ‘bad’… wrong.  He pushed the button on the bluetooth, to turn the cellphone off.


“He can’t hire anyone right now… the insurance company is investigating … to do with one of his trucks burning up.  He can’t hire anyone until it’s over, done with.  He has only the one driver and himself to drive… and if his other driver quit now… he’d be ruint… because he can’t hire anyone right now.  He said he hates to tell good people bad news.


She sat there… went into a shock.  She felt her husband do the same.  Her hands went to her face… she couldn’t bear this.  Where would their dogs go… they were going to lose everything.  She didn’t care about herself… just where would her dogs go?  She began… crying.


Her husband drove home in shock.  He couldn’t even speak.  He felt bad for his wife.  They got out of the vehicle in silence… both went into the gate, closing… locking it behind them.  They both reached out to pet their 3 dogs as they walked up the steps, onto the porch… opened the door, entered the house.


She stopped, turned to him, said to him in a soft voice, “Oh God, what are we going to do, what are we going to do?  Where will our dogs go… who can care for them like we do”?


In a quiet voice, he told her not to worry… their dogs weren’t going anywhere, and they’d be cared for by only them.  He told her everything was going to be alright.  He would show her.


She felt faint… she held onto the chair as she walked by it.  She couldn’t take anymore.  They were at rock-bottom… how in the world could they come up now.


They were like a hot-air balloon… sitting on the ground… what in the world could make it rise back up in the air?  What?


She did something she rarely ever did… she only did such a thing when ‘the world came to an end’ for her.  She walked to the bedroom, opened the closet door… reached for her nightgown.


She put it on, hung her clothes up.  She walked out into the hall where she met her husband… she softly said, “I am going to put me into bed… I’m no good to you, or to me right now… I can’t function anymore… I am going to bed”.  She turned, went to the bed… pulled her covers back… turned on her electric blanket.  She was so cold.


Instantly, the bed shook as three dogs jumped up on the bed with her.  They all found their places beside her, promptly snuggled up to her.  Her husband walked to the door… talked to her.  She told him she was so sorry… she wasn’t any good to anyone right now.  She said in a quiet voice, “You’ve always pulled a rabbit out of the hat… please pull a rabbit out of the hat, now”.


She heard her husband say in a quiet voice, “I’ll pull a rabbit of the hat, you’ll see.  Everything’s going to be alright.  I’ll be back in a little while”.


He left… she fell asleep surrounded by the dogs she loved with her very heart.  As she fell asleep to get away from all the grief, pain in her heart… she reached out to touch her babies.  They were all she had… them and her husband.


She began praying, asking God for a miracle.  She knew many miracles had happened in her life… she asked for one more.  She asked for a good job for her husband, one he could be happy at… one here at home.  As she fell alseep, she prayed that she, her husband, and dogs never be apart… and for all to be alright.  As she drifted to sleep… she thanked God for all she had.


She laid on the big bed… surrounded by three dogs who knew her as their ‘Mommy’.  They snuggled close, tight to her… they knew something was wrong… they sensed she needed them close to her.  They needed… her.


“I have good news, I got a job!”  She became aware of her husband’s voice… it sounded happy.  She woke up, sat up in bed… the dogs jumped up to be petted by her husband.


He began to tell her how he went to a friend of theirs, talked to him.  He didn’t need anyone right now.  He told her how instead of turning to go in the direction he always went… to come home… he went straight.


He drove until… he saw his friend’s truck in the distance.  It was parked in front of his house.  He drove up, parked behind it.  His friend and his wife, and sister came out when they saw him park.


His friend asked him what was he doing.  Her husband told him he was looking for a job… that he’d tried to retire but, there wasn’t enough money to retire.


His friend said his company was looking for a good, experienced driver.  Her husband had worked for that company many years ago… that’s where he had met his friend.


His friend called the company… told them he thought he’d found somebody.  He put the man on speakerphone, and he remembered her husband… her husband remembered him.


It was a good conversation.  He told her husband to call on Monday, and that he would have him come there with another driver to pick up a truck.  Also, he’d be taking a drug test, and all the things he needed to do.


She began to cry softly… when she finally looked up… it seemed everything felt ‘alive’ once again.  She had completely stopped living for a little while… she looked into her husband’s eyes.  They were happy… his voice was happy.  He would be going to work with people he knew… who knew him.  She felt happiness in her heart… she said quietly, “You pulled a rabbit out of the hat!”


She quietly thanked God inside her heart… he’d sent them a miracle at the most crucial time… a better one than the one that came with good promises… left as quickly…  like a tornado blowing in, tearing everything up… leaving all laying in pieces… as it blew away.


She had lost faith in everything… so many bad things had happened in her life… in their life.  So many miracles had happened in their life… always restoring hope again.  This was one of those rare times, when she gave up… knowing there wasn’t any hope left… only to be lifted back up by her husband.  He ‘pulled a rabbit out of the hat’.


I Will Put My Hand Down Its Throat… If Need Be

I Will Put My Hand Down Its Throat… If Need Be
By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee

Years ago, I drove up in the drive-way to visit my mother. I saw her big, yellow dog underneath the Oak tree. He was laying on the ground, his paws were franctically pawing at his face.

I sat there several moments wondering ‘what in the world’! I realized something was wrong with him. Something ‘bad’ was wrong with him!

I hurried out the door of my car, bumped my head, said ‘Damn’! I didn’t stop to think about the pain… I hurried to Daryll, the big, yellow dog.

I saw foam around his mouth… I felt a sick feeling in my stomach. What’s wrong with him… how can I help him if I don’t know what’s wrong? I felt ‘pure panic’!

I couldn’t let him lay there, die right in front of my eyes. I was dressed in a beautiful dress, high heels… the thought went through my mind… ‘I am going to get dirty’!

I was on my knees beside Daryll before I knew it. I didn’t want him to bite me… but, I wasn’t going to ‘just let him die’!

I grabbed his face, and I opened his mouth. His paws had been pawing at his mouth… when I opened it… I saw ‘why’!

A chicken bone from a piece of grilled chicken (a thigh bone) had lodged itself in the roof of his mouth… he couldn’t get it out! He must have been trying for quite some time… he looked really bad… weak.

I quickly grabbed that bone, stuck my finger in the space between the bone, and the roof of his mouth. I was so thankful… the bone popped right out!

That was the day I learned not… to ever give bones to pets ever again! I’m horrified when I see people give dogs, cats …. bones from any kind of meat… unless it’s a ‘huge’ bone’.

Our Pups never get bones… the only bones they ever get are the rawhide chew bones… and their treats.

So, think about that when you go to feed chicken bones to your dogs. I see a lot of people ‘just throw their bones’ at dogs for them to eat. I cringe when I see that… but, it’s none of my business.

I will jump in to save it… if I have to. I will put my hand down its throat if need be to … save it.

While You Let A Little Puppy Lie On The Ground To Die…

While You Let A Little Puppy Lie On The Ground To Die Alone

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee






A little puppy lay at death’s door… no one cared

Children played near by, laughing… screaming

As the butterflies flew around the flowers near its head


She lay there thinking of the woman she went to visit

When she could run, play, bark

She could sense the woman was crying for her


Crying for her, thinking she was laying dead somewhere

Puppies can sense things… this puppy sensed she was needed

It sensed this woman was grieving for her…


She had to summon the strength to push her little body up

To go to the woman, let her know she wasn’t dead

She walked the distance to get to the woman’s house


The woman’s Pups came out barking, she came behind them

Saw this little puppy she loved so much… her mouth fell open

Camie, she cried… oh, Camie… you aren’t dead


The little puppy kept going back to the only place it knew to lay down

Back to where it laid once again on the cold, wet ground

Thinking if the woman didn’t find her… she’d just die


No one else wanted her, they let her go without food, water

So, she’d die… one person wanted her, the other wanted her gone

When fleas bit her, made her body sore… they didn’t like her anymore


Now… as the little puppy lay here on the ground, it was too late

Her body had lost its hair, skin red from the sun, she was ugly

No one could want her now… she heard voices coming her way


The children who played nearby were showing the woman the way

To where she lay… the little puppy saw tears in the woman’s eyes

Wondered if the tears were for her… could it be?


The woman said she was going to carry this puppy home with her

When she reached down to get her … her hands touched blood

And clear liquid… several maggots fell off


The woman asked the children if they had a towel, cloth

They couldn’t find anything to wrap around the little puppy

The woman said she’d carry her, get her to her house


She meant to carry the little puppy home while she had a chance

The woman wasn’t walking away without her, wasting another minute

She reached down, picked the little puppy up in her arms


The woman knew she was causing the puppy pain, it made her cry

She apologized, said she’d make it better

Please, God… help me carry this puppy home


Her weight is so heavy, please help me not to drop her

On the cold, wet ground… I pray I can get her home to care

For her, love her… nurse her back to health


Shame on those people who did such a thing to a baby puppy

Left her to die alone on the cold, wet ground

With butterflies flying over her… flowers growing near her head


Shame on people who neglect their pets, abuse them

The woman prayed they would know in their life how it felt

To have their hair gone, their skin in open sores


To feel how it feels to be abandoned, left to die alone

She knew this was a horrible thought… but, if one doesn’t

Know how it feels… they’ll keep right on


Abusing other little puppies, any children they might have

Shame on you, people… shame on you

Why didn’t you let this woman know you didn’t want this puppy


When you knew she was attached to it, loved it

Shame on you for keeping the puppy where it would die

After the woman spent money on medicine for it, put it on


Letting the puppy get in worse condition

Did you keep it penned up somewhere to let it weaken

Because that puppy didn’t get in that condition overnight


Not overnight when she’d was getting better

The woman’s heart cries because there was a period of three days

This puppy must have suffered horribly


Three days… when she could have had her

Those people knew she loved the little puppy

They knew she was trying to make her well, they gave her permission


Did they have an argument… the one who didn’t want the puppy

Winning, saying ‘get rid of it’

Is that what happened… Shame on you for not coming to the woman


Shame on you… this is the thought that constantly goes through

The woman’s mind … though she smiles at you politely

As you ask her if she’d carry you to town to get cigarettes


As you impose on her privacy, generosity

Shame on you for thinking the world is only about you

While you let a little puppy lie on the ground to die, all alone



It’s Time To Truly Make Her A Part Of … Us

It’s Time To Truly Make Her A Part Of… Us

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee



This is little, precious Camo… I’m so thankful to have her.  You might not can see the beauty of this little soul, yet… soon, you will.  I’m going to make her get well… if I have to lay by her side, I will care for her.  She has   a good home, soon will be a ‘house Pup’; good food, and … us.  For now, she has to be to herself so, she can heal… for now, I’m glad she is acclimated to the outside.  I drop the canvas each night over the door, sides of her ‘cozy house’, so mosquitoes can’t bite her.  See her little precious face… it melts my heart.





I just folded Camo’s towels, bath cloth, bedding.  I washed all in hot, sudsy, Clorox water.  In the morning, I will take the big kennel cab she has for her ‘cozy house’… wash it out with sudsy, Clorox water.


She has a fenced-in enclosure on the porch so, she can move about as she wants.  She has two stainless steel bowls… one holding dry food she can eat whenever she wants to… the other holds her evening supper…. pure white chicken breast with dry food.  A big pan holds her cool water to drink.


I have a piece of canvas I pull down over her ‘cozy house’ at night-time to protect her from mosquitoes.  Outside her fence, there’s a big fan to circulate the air around her during the day.


She eats very good, drinks a lot of cool water.  She’s very ‘wiggly’, her tail goes up in the air.  I’m so thankful.  Looking at her, one would think there’s no way she could have any energy.


Camo’s skin was left untreated; she didn’t have a clean, dry place to lay as she became very sick.  It breaks my heart thinking about it.


Thank-God, she somehow made a trip to here … I know she was looking for me.  Thank-God, I walked outside in time to see her… to know she didn’t die… Camo was alive!


I am going to make her get well.  I will sleep by her side if I have to.  I mean for Camo to be beautiful, well, spoiled and happy.  That’s what this little, precious puppy deserves.


I can’t even begin to tell you the stress of watching her suffer when she came each day for a morning, evening treat.  I asked for permission to get medicine for her… and said I would put it on her.  I was told I could.  She began to get better…. then, I didn’t see her anymore… excepting to see her briefly run here to look in her bowl.  I could see she had gotten worse.


I began worrying about her.  I was told she was dying, not moving anymore… and a shotgun would be brought home in a day or two, if she wasn’t better.  Oh, my heart… I agonized over this beautiful little puppy…


I began to cry uncontrollably when I got by myself… I should have asked for her.  Now, she’d be dead by the next day, surely…..  I felt anger because I felt the people knew I’d become attached to her, they no longer wanted her because they are expecting a baby.


Not only that, we had bought medicine for her twice… why didn’t someone tell me so, her skin wouldn’t get into such horrid condition.  Why?  I had the medicine here for her… I was going to use it faithfully.


Not only have I been experiencing stress for this precious puppy…. we’ve had several other things to stress us out.  It all caught up to me yesterday evening… my chest began hurting in the center.  This happens from time to time… this time was the worst ever.  I began to have a headache, an awful headache.


I was alone, Skip wasn’t here.  I made it outside to the pickup… I was going to drive myself to the emergency room.  I didn’t want to leave our Pups…. and Camo.  I sat in the pickup, crying.  I began to dial 911…. changed my mind, called Skip.  I couldn’t get him on the cell phone.


I laid back against the seat.  I realized I’d run outside to the pickup, barefooted… on the rocks!  I didn’t even notice … the pain was that bad.  I kept taking deep breaths, hoping the pain would subside.  I didn’t want to leave the Pups… Skip won’t be home for several days.


Thank-God, I was home… Camo would surely have died.  These thoughts were going through my mind as I kept trying to decide ‘should I go, call 911’.  The pain was ‘ungodly’…….


This went on for about ten-fifteen minutes when… thankfully, the pain subsided.  I could breathe easier; my head quit hurting.  I thanked God… I didn’t want to leave now… not when I have to make Camo get well so, she can be ‘home’ just like our other Pups.  I don’t want her to have to sleep on the porch no longer than she needs to.  I’m so glad for now… she has been an outside pup.  Not for long….


The strange thing is…. she won’t go to the ‘bathroom’ on the porch.  I have to be here to let her run free in the fenced-in yard.  She’s already ‘house-broken’ on her own.  I’m so proud of that…. of course, when ‘she goes’ out in the yard… I praise her by clapping my hands, saying ‘yay-yyyyyyyy’!!!


She is going to blend in our family beautifully… she’ll have free run to go outside when she wants to, just like Kissy, and Chadwick.  They have a nice pet door.  Not only that… their yard is always clean… we clean it constantly.  We don’t want them to walk in a ‘nasty’ yard.


When she is well, she will sleep on the bed with ‘all of us’… I’m so thankful we haven’t gotten rid of our king-size bed!  I was wanting to downsize to a queen-size… not anymore.  :)))  I look forward to the day in the near future for her to become truly a part of ‘us’… live in the house with us.  I can tell she is going to be a very good Pup, too.


I have all her clean bedding, bath cloth ready to put in her cozy house in the morning.  Little Camo never has to sleep on anything dirty ever again… and will soon sleep on a soft bed… in the near future.  As long as I have a breath in me… our Pups will be loved, spoiled, taken care of.


We are her family now… we will protect her just as we do our Pups… because as of yesterday, July 04… 2013, she became ‘our Pup’…. also.  Now… it’s time for her to get well…. so, we can hug her, play with her without hurting her skin… make her truly a part of ‘us.





Especially When That Good Neighbor Is… Me

Especially When That Good Neighbor Is… Me

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee


Sometimes… we can live places where if you become too familiar with people who live nearby… it’s not the happiest thing in the world.  Especially when the relationship is one-sided; when you only want to be friendly ‘from a distance’…


Especially when a person has been private many years… who isn’t ready to give it up for people she/he knows aren’t ever going to be there in his/her life.


Especially… when they only want to use he/she as a taxi; to borrow money… or overcharge to do things for you.


Definitely… no one wants neighbors like that… ones who ‘can’t hold their ground’.  Who did they depend on ‘before’?


Good people will fall into the ‘trap’ by being so nice, caring.  This leads people into thinking you are weak, easily taken advantage of.  They don’t know that good people ‘hope their new neighbors’ are just as nice.


Good neighbors dread coming home; try to be quiet when opening, closing doors.  Dread when their phone begins to ring… know that if they show ‘life signs’ around their home… someone is going to ‘break that peacefulness’ that was known ‘before’ someone moved into the neighborhood.


It’s sad, because someone’s feelings are bound to be hurt.  Hurt in a gentle way… because it’ll embarrass, and let someone know they haven’t fooled… anyone.  Especially… after 3 times… it’s only ‘a matter of time’…..


Embarrassment… because someone will know that all along… good neighbors ‘knew the whole time’… what was going on… they gave the benefit of the doubt…. hoped someone would get the hint; not over-step boundaries.  Good neighbors are just that… no more.  They aren’t your taxi cabs, nor your ‘bank’…


Hurt when they realize that if they ‘dropped a puppy off’ somewhere to ‘get rid of it’… they need to never-ever expect good neighbors to look at them, acknowledge them again.


Someone’s going to feel really bad… especially… if a little precious puppy isn’t around anymore.  One that the good neighbors bought medicine for to help its skin; fed it extra to help it get more good things to nourish its body.


The good neighbors will stay good neighbors, only help if there’s an emergency… but, their friendship will never be there… again.  They will never be a ‘taxi cab’ again; nor will they ever pay too much for a small service… again.  Regardless… they won’t be that ever again…..


Especially… if that little puppy has been mistreated… taken off somewhere without the good neighbors knowing that it might need a new home…


Especially… if the good neighbors would have taken the little puppy they had grown to love, care for.


Especially when… someone said they knew the good neighbors loved that puppy…. and they liked that.  Liked that the good neighbors were helping to make its skin well… someone liked that the good neighbors bought medicine for it… even put it on.


Liked that the good neighbors gave their little puppy ‘extra’ good food.  Liked knowing the puppy was always welcomed at their home, yard.


Finding out about the little puppy is going to determine a lot of things…. especially when the good neighbors will still be nice; but… never the same again.


Especially if someone can mistreat a young puppy… get rid of a precious little puppy.


No… the good neighbors won’t ever be the same … especially when that good neighbor is…  me.











She Woke In The Night To A Sound… Chapter One

She Woke In The Night To A Sound…… Chapter One

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/ aka Granny Gee

She woke up to the nightlight burning in her room.  Her dog lay beside her sleeping.  Something woke her up, what?

She looked around her room.. all was neat, organized.  There was a gate on her doorway… to keep her dog inside the room.  She didn’t want him to run free, to get hit by a car.  He was so special to her.

She heard the sound again, looked to the source.  In the nightlight she saw something she’d never seen in her life.  On the bucket of water she kept for her dog… were three huge …. rats up on the edge… drinking the water.  Oh my God, she thought.

Her dog didn’t wake up, he’d become used to the huge rats that would come in the night to search for his food, drink his water.

Victoria laid there quietly, a sick sensation in her stomach.  She didn’t want to wake her dog, Garraway, up.  Nor did she want to wake up her parents, brothers.

She’d told her father about the rats that visited her room at nights…. he never did anything about it.  Her mother would become defensive when she mentioned the rats to her.

Victoria had come to live with her parents, they took her in when she had no place to go.  She was so grateful to them, she tried never to complain.  She learned to quit telling them the things she saw in the night.  Her dog, Garraway, seemed to resign himself, also.  They stayed quiet.

She shuddered as she closed her eyes… ‘please Lord, don’t let them touch me or Garraway’ .. she prayed.  She was so thankful to be here, rats and all.  She kept her eyes closed, her hand on her dog, petting him for comfort until her hand slowly lay still… Victoria had fallen asleep.

Victoria had no idea of the things she’d encountered on this new path life had put her on.