Great Dog Story Part two
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Thread: Great Dog Story Part two

  1. #1
    Senior Member Billie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004

    Default Great Dog Story Part two

    Had to edit-too many words I guess. heres teh rest:
    READ THE FIRST PART BEFORE NOW- Somehow this listed above the first story!!!!!!

    Whoever Gets My Dog:
    Well, I can't say
    that I'm happy you're reading this, a letter I told the shelter
    could only be opened by Reggie's new owner. I'm not even happy writing it. If you're reading this, it means I just got back from my last car ride wit h my Lab after dropping him off at the shelter. He knew something was different. I have packed up his pad and toys before and set them by the back door before a trip, but this time... it's like he knew something was wrong. And something is wrong... which is why I have to go to try to make it right.

    So let me tell you about my Lab in the hopes that it will help you bond with him and he with you.

    First, he loves tennis balls. the more the merrier. Sometimes I think he's part
    squirrel, the way he hordes them. He usually always has two in his mouth, and he tries to get a third in there. Hasn't done it yet. Doesn't matter where you throw them,
    he'll bound after it, so be careful - really don't do it by any roads. I made that mistake once, and it almost cost him

    Next, commands. Maybe the shelter staff already told you, but I'll go over them
    again: Reggie knows the obvious ones -
    "sit," "stay," "come," "heel." He knows hand signals: "back" to turn around and go back when you put your hand straight up; and "over" if you put your hand out right or left. "Shake" for shaking water off, and "paw" for a high-five. He does "down" when he feels like lying down - I bet you could work on that with him some more. He knows "ball" and "food" and "bone" and "treat" like nobody's business.

    I trained Reggie with small food treats. Nothing opens his ears like little pieces of
    hot dog.

    Feeding schedule: twice a day, once about seven in the morning, and again at six in
    the evening. Regular
    store-bought stuff; the shelter has the brand.

    He's up on his shots. Call the clinic on 9th Street and update his info with yours; they'll make sure to send you reminders for when
    he's due. Be forewarned: Reggie hates the
    vet. Good luck getting him in the car - I don't know how he knows when it's time to go t o the vet, but he knows.

    Finally, give him some time. I've never been married, so it's only been Reggie and me for his whole life. He's gone everywhere with me, so please include him on your daily car rides if you can. He sits well in the backseat, and he doesn't bark or complain. He just loves to be around people, and me most especially.

    Which means that this transition is going to be hard, with him going to live with someone

    And that's why I need to share one more bit of info with you....

    His name's not Reggie.

    I don't know what
    made me do it, but when I dropped him off at the shelter, I told them
    his name was Reggie. He's a smart dog, he'll get used to it and will respond to it, of that I have no doubt. But I just couldn't bear to give them his real name. For me to do that, it seemed so final, that handing him over to the shelter was as good as me admitting that I'd never see him again. And if I end up coming back, getting him, and tearing up this letter, it means everything's fine. But if someone else is reading it, well... well it means that his new owner should know his real name. It'll help you bond with him. Who knows, maybe you'll even notice a change in his demeanor if he's been giving you problems.

    His real name is Tank. Because that is what I drive.

    Again, if you're reading this and you're from the area, maybe my name has been on the
    news. I told the shelter that they
    couldn't make "Reggie" available for adoption until they received word from my company commander. See, my parents are gone, I have no siblings, no one I could've left Tank with... and it was my only real request of the
    Army upon my deployment to Iraq, that they make one phone call the shelter... in the "event"... to tell them that Tank could be put up for adoption. Luckily, my colonel is a dog guy, too, and he knew where my platoon
    was headed. He said he'd do it personally. And if you're reading this, then he made good on his word.

    Well, this letter is getting to downright depressing, even though, frankly, I'm just
    writing it for my dog. I couldn't imagine if I was writing it for a wife and kids and family. but still, Tank has been my family for the last six years, almost as long as the Army has been my family.

    And now I hope and pray that you make him part of your family and that he
    will adjust and come to love you the same way he loved me.

    That unconditional love from a dog is what I took with me to Iraq as an inspiration to do
    something selfless, to protect innocent people from those who would do terrible things... and to keep those terrible people from coming over here. If I had to give up Tank in order to do it, I am glad to have done so. He was my example of service and of
    love. I hope I honored him by my service to my country and comrades.

    All right, that's enough. I deploy this evening and have to drop this letter off at the shelter. I don't think I'll say another
    good-bye to Tank, though. I cried too much the first time. Maybe I'll peek in on him and see if he finally got that third tennis ball in his mouth.

    Good luck with Tank. Give him a good home, and give him an extra kiss goodnight - every
    night - from me.

    you, Paul Mallory

    ____________ _________ _________ _______

    I folded the letter and slipped it back in the envelope. Sure I had heard of Paul Mallory, everyone in town knew him, even new people like me. Local kid, killed in Iraq a few months ago and posthumously earning the Silver Star when he gave his life to save three buddies. Flags had been at half-mast all summer.

    I leaned forward in my chair and rested my elbows on my knees, staring at the dog.

    "Hey, Tank," I said quietly.

    The dog's head whipped up, his ears co cked and his eyes bright.

    "C'mere boy."

    He was instantly on his feet, his nails clicking on the hardwood floor. He sat in front of me, his head tilted, searching for the name he hadn't heard in months.

    "Tank," I whispered.

    His tail swished.

    I kept whispering his name, over and over, and each time, his ears lowered,
    his eyes softened, and his posture relaxed as a wave of contentment just seemed to flood him. I stroked his ears, rubbed his shoulders, buried my face into his scruff and hugged him.

    "It's me now, Tank, just you and me. Your old pal gave you to me." Tank reached up and licked my cheek. "So whatdaya say we play some ball? His ears perked again. "Yeah? Ball? You like that? Ball?" Tank
    tore from my hands and disappeared in the next room.

    And when he came back, he had three tennis balls in his mouth.


    Last edited by Billie; 08-25-2009 at 12:38 PM.
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  3. #2
    Senior Member HeavenSent's Avatar
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    Dec 2008
    MA and SC


    Great, now I'm sitting at my desk at work crying...
    Mary and
    Sterling's Lucy J. Two Shoes CL1 CL2-R CL2-H CL2-F NAC NJC CGC (Lucy)
    My first agility dog...thank you for everything!
    C-ATCH3 Creek Boats Heaven Sent JH AX AXJ XF SG CGC WC ASCA-RN (1 AKC RN Pass) 85 MACH Points (Midge)
    Blackfoot's Thyme to Shyne "Rayven"

  4. #3
    Senior Member jtfreeman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Marietta, Georgia


    I had to close the door to my office halfway through the second part.

    Thank you for sharing. I am going home to let my dog to play.

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  6. #4

  7. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2003


    i agree that it is a great dog story. actually more of a dog person story.

    however, according to, it isn't true. they searched the military records for posthumously awarded silver stars and could find no record to support it. they then went on to thank all the servicemen, alive or dead, for their service to our country and acknowledged the sacrifices they make by leaving their families, friends and pets behind to defend us.-Paul
    there's no good reason to fatten up a retriever.

  8. #6
    Junior Member Samg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Upstate NY


    It was too perfect. I snoped it before I could get choked up. I started to feel a little emotion, and quickly nipped it in the bud.

  9. #7
    Senior Member Goldenboy's Avatar
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    Jun 2004
    Brownsville, Vermont


    Still, a well written piece of fiction. Snopes did a respectful job of of debunking this one.

  10. #8
    Senior Member HeavenSent's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    MA and SC


    Truth or Fiction, doesn't matter to me. It was what was at the heart of it that mattered. I still went home and hugged my dogs and threw a wing-wrapped bumper for the Midge and appreciated the sacrifices the Service men and women make that I did not.
    Mary and
    Sterling's Lucy J. Two Shoes CL1 CL2-R CL2-H CL2-F NAC NJC CGC (Lucy)
    My first agility dog...thank you for everything!
    C-ATCH3 Creek Boats Heaven Sent JH AX AXJ XF SG CGC WC ASCA-RN (1 AKC RN Pass) 85 MACH Points (Midge)
    Blackfoot's Thyme to Shyne "Rayven"

  11. #9
    Senior Member greg magee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Pottstown, Pa


    who would ever believe such poppycock, ranks right up there with Noah and the Arch.

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