A Dog's

I think Ann was a Save-A-Pet because she was locked in a basement and ran away. I think this because she was so happy when we took her away from Save-a-Pet, but she was not happy when she saw we had a basement.

We didn't really need to use the basement for Ann except that we never trained her not to pee in the living room, so Mom and Dad said she had to stay in the basement at night. A lot of nights I would say that I locked her in the basement but really I'd lock her in my bedroom to sleep with me. And then when she'd whimper, I'd let her out of my bedroom and she'd pee in the living room.

When we first brought Ann home from Save-a-Pet, Mom and I fought over who would get to walk her. When we first brought Ann home from Save-a-Pet, she got eight walks a day. The next week she got no walks, but she sat by the front door a lot, hoping for walks, and I felt sorry for her. So I let her come running with me. Then she learned that when I took my running shoes out of the closet she would get a walk, and I felt special because she knew my clothing so well. So I let her off her leash while we ran because I wanted her to know that I knew we had a special relationship and I trusted her.

Sometimes she would not really run with me, but more without me, and then the police would have to bring her back. And Mom or Dad hit Ann to make her remember.

When I went to college no one walked Ann. My little brother Daniel learned about animal rights in school, so Dad put up a fence around the back yard, and Mom yelled at Ann for shitting on her flowers.

In the divorce Mom got custody of Ann. Or maybe Ann was like the balcony: She just came with the house.

Eight years later, Mom told me Ann was sick, but she didn't tell me how sick until she called me in L.A. to say that she'd pay for me to fly home to see Ann before Ann died.

"Ann is dying?"

"The vet said she is suffering a lot and should be put to sleep. She can't even go down the basement stairs."

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