It's no secret: I. Love. Dogs.
I almost came home with a miniature Doberman today. My buddy Steve and I were enjoying ice tea at our usual weekly hangout spot and there was a patron there who had the cutest little Mini Dobie. Named, appropriately, "Mini." Her 20 something human was a bit out of his depth both with keeping her under control and with life in general. His story unfolded as we sat there petting his dog...
He is homeless. He is looking for work at Mc Donald's. He was recently in jail which meant that his dog spent some time in a central valley shelter. The dog was two years old and still in tact. I gave him advice to spay his dog. I had to stop myself from offering to take her in myself. He was waxing poetic about how lovely it would be to have a little of puppies "just like her." I told him it sounded like the last thing he needed in his life right now. He asked if we knew any low-cost doggie day care so he could place her while working (when he landed a job). I told him, get this, that I would watch his dog for him for free until he could get on his feet. On one condition. The dog had to be spayed. He looked at me warily but took my name and phone number. I was earnest, I will take the dog while he is working. Otherwise, the dog will be left unsupervised and in danger of gawd knows what.
This kid seemed gentle and kind, he knew the ins and outs of homelessness and how to stash his stuff so it wouldn't get stolen. A lady recently gave him $200 to replace his stolen bike. He's living in a tent. I don't know how he manages to care for this dog, but the dog is well nourished and has a shiny coat. She just needs some training so she'll stop barking at other dogs and some people. Some old guy, nicely dressed, gave our young hero a dressing-down about his dog's behavior, and recommended smacking it on the nose with a newspaper when it barked. (Eye Roll). I told the kid that was really 'old school' and instead should firmly say "quit" and then slip him a tiny doggie treat when he quit barking. Our young hero then said he can't afford doggie treats. Sigh.
Steve humored my longish conversation with this fella and shared my enthusiasm over this pint-sized Dobie. He really was a sweetheart.
I advised the 'rents that I almost came home with a dog today. And I'm not kidding. I came close, many times, to asking if the kid wanted me to care for his dog. But they were obviously bonded.
I think I'll wander back over with some doggie treats and see if I meet up with them again. Oh, yeah, and a sandwich and drink for the young man.