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Down, Dinky, Down!

Mom was not a pet lover, but Dad was. He must have done some fast talking to get her to agree to a dog. He must have pointed out that having a pet was a character-building experience. He must have promised that he would see to it that the kids took care of the dog, and she wouldn’t have any responsibility for it. I don’t know what else might have gone on between them, but there he was – a little black and white mutt that Dad named Spotty.

One day we were at home playing in the front yard, when Spotty ran out in the road, right in the path of a car. We stood there and watched the whole thing. There was a screech of tires, and some yelping. Poor Spotty didn’t make it.

Soon there was another little black and white pup. He looked uncannily similar to Spotty, and Dad named him Sputty.

We had Sputty for a little while, and then he just disappeared. He must have either run off, or been picked up, or come to some other fate. We just never saw him again.

Time passed, and Dad decided to have one more go at it. He brought home a spindly-legged brown puppy that you could hold in one hand. The poor thing was so tiny he couldn’t even get up the two steps from the back entrance to the kitchen. Dad named him “Dinky.”

As the weeks went on, Dinky grew and grew, and grew some more. I suspect Mom put her foot down, so Dad asked another family who went to our church and lived on a farm if they would take Dinky. They agreed. Dinky left our lives, and I didn’t think any more about him.

Three or four years later my brother Mark and I had entered our teen years. I was an introvert, but he was a real social guy, and he suggested that we go down the road and visit our friend Cheryl. Away we went. When we got to her house, Mark knocked on the door. We heard a heavy thumpity-thump, thumpity-thump, and vicious growling and snarling on the other side of the door. Then we heard Cheryl’s voice shouting, “Down, Dinky, down!!”

Dinky had grown up. Turns out he was mostly Doberman.


© 2022 Cherie Harbridge Williams

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