Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Aggie's Early Days, part 3

The first couple of days living on the streets were so bad I hate to even think about them. It was summertime now, and the weather was very hot. I was terrified that Rocco would find me so I watched constantly for a man in a black baseball cap and hid when I saw one.

There were a lot of places to hide. Summertime in the city is building time, so there are construction sites everywhere. It was easy to find a hole in a pile of building rubble and dig my way in, so I could sleep at night. Every morning I would follow my nose to a restaurant and sit out front, begging for food. I wouldn't let anyone get too close, but oftentimes someone would toss me a taste of something. I also had to keep my eyes open to watch for Rocco, and so many men with black baseball caps walked by that I never felt safe. And a lot of people tried to chase me away, calling me names. Some even told me to "go home," as if I ever would!

One thing that made my life pretty miserable was my coat. My hair mats really easily, and Mia had never bothered to brush or groom me. So by now I was almost a solid mat of fur all over my body.  And the fleas! I was being tortured by them in this heat. 

I met a lady who felt really sorry for me.  She would bring me food every morning and speak kindly to me, calling me Bam Bam. I wouldn't let her get too close but I really wanted to! She would hang out for long periods of time while tossing bits of bread and cheese to me. I started to allow her to get closer every day, until finally she was close enough to pick me up.

"You are really a mess, aren't you?" she told me as she scratched my chest. Oh that felt so good!  "I wish I could keep you, but my place doesn't allow pets. I do know a place that will help you, though." She held me in her arms as she walked down the street and into a building that she called a "Humane Society."

'Oh no, I don't think I like this place at all!' I thought to myself. I could hear dogs barking and cats meowing, and none of them sounded happy. The nice lady told the man at the desk that I was a stray and my name was Bam Bam.  I was then put in a cage by myself and I sat there day after day while people walked past me. No one stopped for long. I was allowed in a run twice a day, but in between times I had to pee and poop on the paper in my cage. The mats of my fur soaked up the urine like a sponge. I was miserable.

After days and days went by, I overheard a couple of people talking about who was on the list to be "put down" the next day. "That Bam Bam, he's got a one way ticket out tomorrow," joked the man. "No one wants him."

"Let me see that one," replied a woman. "I'm with Burlington County Animal Alliance." She opened the cage door and patted the front of the cage. "Come here, baby," she said to me. How did she know my name? I wagged my tail and came closer. "My, you need a good grooming, but you look so young--how would you like to come with me? I think I can find you a good home." I licked her face. Yes! Take me out of here!

She brought me to the home of a really nice woman who had lots of dogs in her house.  I was in heaven!  My name was changed again, to "Sugar," which was fine (just don't call me late for supper! Hah!) I now had lots of doggie friends to play with and a big yard to roam. I even let them groom me, and I felt so much better with all that hair gone. And no fleas anymore!
Auggie on Petfinder.com, after his mats were shaved off.

A few weeks later a bunch of us dogs went to a store (Mom later referred to it as a Petsmart Adoption Day,) where lots of people oohed and aahed over us. And that's where I met Mom! She told me that she knew right off the bat that I was her dog.  She and Dad changed my name to Auggie, but sometimes they call me Sparky, Snuffy, Mr. Wiggles, or whatever comes to mind. I think that's funny!  I have had so many names.

I was a little nervous around Dad for a few days, in case he decided he had to wear a black baseball cap and turn mean, but it's been 7 years and he never has been anything but loving. I still watch for Rocco, though. Sometimes I think I catch a glimpse of him and I have to bark and warn Mom and Dad, but they have promised to keep me safe and so far, so good.

Other things that have changed for me, too. It took a while but I now know that getting up on the table is a big no-no. I go outside to "do my business," too. I still don't like to be brushed, but Mom trims me regularly and gives me lots of baths, so I stay neat looking. I get to meet lots of dogs in the campgrounds where we stay, and the view out the window changes often.  Life is good. I have even made my peace with that cat, KC, who lives with us. Sometimes I chase him just to see him run, but he's not such a bad guy after all.

Thanks for reading my story! I won't say "The End" because there's still lots to live before my story is really done.


  1. Oh, Augie, a budding writer! When will you write you book?

  2. He says "thank you," but is not sure there is a whole book in him!