By Guest Author Maxx Danielson (Number one house doggie)
My siblings and I were romping when suddenly we were pulled from Mom, placed in a cage and taken to a strange location where frightened dogs yipped and howled. Sad and confused, a large cat roamed like a warden with a president’s poise. When darkness fell, my siblings and I huddled together, whimpering. The next morning, toothy-grinned giants started picking us up. One-by-one, my sisters and brothers disappeared. By the end of the day, I was alone with that awful cat.
More giants came the next morning. Some held me. All set me down. Late that afternoon, a middle-aged couple picked me up and cuddled me like no one had before. I licked their faces, certain they were my new best friends. We spent time in a small room, playing while they talked, but then they set me down and waved good bye. Soon it was dark again and my nightmares began.
Whenever I awoke, the cat was there gazing at me. I awoke to a familiar scent, then the lady from yesterday appeared. Now wide-awake, I stood tall, begging for her to hold me. I cuddled into her like I did my mom, but then she set me down and left.
With my spirit crushed, I shivered with my eyes squeezed shut, ignoring the bouncing puppies vying for attention. Then I heard that angelic voice again, soft at first and getting louder. With my heart racing and tail spinning, I tail nearly got airborne. As she smiled and lifted me to her chest, I began licking her face with all my might. I knew I was going with her when she started calling me Maxx. The sales lady laughed when my savior said Maxx had two Xs because I was extra special. The watch-cat gave me a chin nod when the sales lady said I was a Christmas baby. I didn’t understand this, but when I wagged my tail again, the watch-cat walked away.
Soon I was in another strange place, but here I was running loose, showered with toys, food and a soft bed. Though I still yearned for my real mom and siblings, my giants became my adopted family. Since then I have learned that birds fly, fish swim and squirrels drive me mad. Snow is cold, water is wet, my teeth must be brushed, my hair must be cut, burs cling to my fur, and without opposable thumbs, I constantly need help from my giants. But whether I am patrolling the house, playing catch, rough-housing, or walking with them, there is no better feeling than their unconditional love. Once they are asleep, I passionately return their love by sleeping between them, thanking them for letting me into their lives. Mom and Dad, you’re the greatest!