I was awakened by quite literally the strangest sound I’ve ever heard. And believe me, being a black lab, I hear all kinds of weird noises. But this one was weirder than usual. The best way for me to describe it would be as if someone was walking toward me and sloshing a water balloon.
Yawning, I lifted my head off of my favorite spot on my couch in time to see Harold padding past me. He was walking with purpose and meaning and was strangely … bloated. He looked like a tick ready to pop!
“Gotta pee,” he said in a matter-of-fact sort of way with a hint of shame.
If you’re asking why I didn’t smell him coming, its because he stunk to high heaven. Most cats cleaned themselves, but not Harold. His long fur was matted with stickers and clods of hair and he reeked of motor oil and cat urine. Needless to say, his stink was overwhelming so I couldn’t tell if he was across the house or right next to me.
Momentarily, he padded past me again, back to whatever silliness he was up to. Harold was deflated like a popped balloon, but single-minded of purpose. He was on a mission.
But I didn’t have time to worry about that. The boy named Pickle walked past me with his boots. It was that time of the year again. The mourning doves had started migrating a few days before and the boy getting his boots was the sign that hunting season had started. But I had to be patient …
“Gotta pee,” Harold said flatly walking past. He was bloated again and sloshing.
No matter, I had to get some sleep. Closing my eyes I let myself drift off to sleep. It was only a matter of hours before …
“Gotta pee,” the sloshing cat said again, rousing me from slumber.
“Mom! I think Harold is sick!” I heard the daughter yell. She yelled … a lot. “He’s been in the litter box all morning!”
I yawned as Harold, again full of purpose, walked past to whatever it was that he was doing. But I wasn’t going to get to sleep. Mom had to answer.
“He’s fine!” I heard Mom continue the yelling across the house.
I had birds to find in a little while! How was a dog supposed to be ready for hunting season with all that noise!? I stood up and turned in a circle to make sure my couch was good and soft.
Laying down, I stretched out my paws and …
“Gotta pee,” he announced between sloshes.
That was it! I was going outside! I padded to the back door and scratched to let the humans know I wanted out.
“Mom!” the daughter named Dorikay yelled. “Liza wants outside!”
It wasn’t going to happen was it? I was never going to get any rest for the big night, the most important night of the year. Scratch, scratch, scratch.
“Then let her out!” Mom yelled back.
Scratch, scratch … “Gotta pee.”
OH FOR THE LOVE OF ..!
The son, Pickle, came to the back and opened the door. Thank goodness! I bolted out the door and quickly found a good place to lay down … just as Dad called me.
“Liza!” he yelled out the back door, “Let’s go!”
Sighing loudly, I scampered back to the house and ran across …
I would say something was wrong with Harold, but I think his problems started with being born and then it all went down hill from there. I’m not saying he was dumb, but … okay, he was dumb.
But I couldn’t be concerned with that. I had a job to do and was going to excel at it as usual. Leaving the house, I hopped into the back of the truck and promptly fell asleep.
* * *
Worst. Hunting trip. Ever.
* * *
Dragging my way back into the house, feet hurting and legs aching, I shuffled to my water bowl.
“Did you have fun!?” Mom asked while cooking.
Normally I would have answered her, but this time … I was done. D-U-N, done. I laid down next to my water bowl and drank deeply. I would have stood up as was proper, but I was completely exhausted.
“I think she’s sore,” Dad said, going to the refrigerator.
He was going to put some medicine in a hotdog and then give it to me. He thought I didn’t know, but I knew. It was one of the few times I would manipulate my family. Hotdogs were worth it.
Handing me the hotdog, Dad looked up, “So what ever happened to Harry?”
“Dunno,” Mom responded while turning over the chicken she was frying. “We haven’t seen him for a while.”
Great. I needed to find Harold. A dog’s job was never done. As I mentioned before, his stench was so intense I couldn’t tell where he was in the house. He was in the house somewhere, I could tell by sniffing at the air, just not sure where.
I drug myself into the living room, sniffing at the carpet. He had passed that way about two hundred times. Following the stinky trail, I located him in the back room … in the fish tank.
Harold, wet and miserable was sitting in the fish tank with the water up to his chin. His eyes were blood-shot and the guppies were nipping at his naked tail.
That’s what he had been doing! He had tried to drink all the water in the tank so he could get to the guppies, but didn’t stop to take a nap. Heavy with water and tired, he had fallen in and didn’t have the strength to get back out.
“Can ya git meh out please?” he asked me.
He had to wait until I was done with my nap.