He Named Me Ben

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic
This is life seen through the eyes of a dog in an animal shelter. Though these places are meant to keep animals safe sometimes there is cruelty.

Submitted: April 10, 2017

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Submitted: April 10, 2017

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He Named Me Ben.

By

Mabaker

 

 

 

 

The early morning peace was shattered. I heard the sound of pain.

I never moved.  I knew the sounds that meant the big human with a thick leather belt, metal part swinging loose was coming. Any dog close enough would feel the pain of it on their back or head.

He was cruel and would wrap the leather around his hand and strike until blood flowed.

Once I had pushed the gate open with my nose, I thought to walk out and look around this strange place. I saw the male human coming, and like all of my breed wagged my tail in friendly greeting. I felt the first stinging blow of the belt across my head. I pulled my tail between my legs for the protection of my private parts.I cringed down wondering what I had done wrong.The hitting and the pain went on until he was panting short of breath, then he kicked me back inside my cage and slammed the gate. I never went outside again.

The ground is a solid coldness under my belly fur, and the cold wire encloses my sleeping place. Everywhere I look are my breed all inside these cold cages.

We are never taken out. To make a fuss gets us nothing but the leather across our heads. I cower far back in the corner as I hear the yelping start. It is one of the new smaller dogs this time, and the sound of leather slapping down fast and hard terrifies me. I would like to show less fear, but he wields the pain maker.

I sleep light. Moaning from one cage near mine is soft, non-stopping. The big human lashed out kicking and has caused damage to this dog. Now unable to stand or sit up, I fear he will pass away in the cold air of pre-dawn. I feel sadness for those who learn the thing wrapped around the big one’s hand means terror.

It is full daylight. The young female has brought what is put for us to eat and fills our water dish.  I had trouble at first eating this, it isn’t nice.  I learned that it would remain in the bowl until the sun spoilt it, so now I swallow it down fast. Then drink the water. This female makes the soft sounds, but I stay back until she moves away, then I hurry and eat what she has left and returned to my corner.

It is night. Two humans struggle to carry a dog between them. The cage beside me is empty, so they push him inside and leave. I lay with my head on my paws watching and listen to his moans. He has been hurt in some way his back legs twitch as if he is running from an enemy, he doesn’t talk, so I lay quietly watching.

It is pre-dawn when at last he opens one eye, the other is closed tight, and swollen,  dried blood covers his chest fur, and one ear is ripped away from his head. Whatever happened to him was dreadful, and I feel sure he will pass into his ancestors home soon.

He lays without movement, and I believe he’s gone when suddenly he opens his eye and looks straight into my eyes.

“Don’t let them fool you with friendly head pats and food. They are cruel and will only hurt you if you trust them. They had me in a cage and pitted against a much bigger dog, he hurt me badly. The human I thought liked me has put me in here because I didn’t win him something, which made him angry.  I am to have something called ‘put-down’ when the daylight comes. I feel so tired, just don’t trust any of them.”

When I woke again, he was gone, but I remembered his words ‘Don’t trust them, they will hurt you if you believe them.’

One warm day two male humans sauntered along the row of cages, gazing at the dogs inside. Some, who’d not been hurt by the big one wagged their tails or stood on their back legs in a friendly gesture. Most who had felt the buckle on their heads stayed far back. I remained where I usually lay my head on my front paws watching.

I heard the sounds they make, and though I could not understand when one opened my cage, I raised my head suspiciously. What did this mean?

I noted, one was old, the other no as old. I started to shake in fear. The not-so-old one clicked his claws at me, and I stood up. Though he had no leather strap around his hand, I didn’t trust him not to hurt me, my tail was between my legs, my head hung down.

“You’ve had a rough life old fella?”

The words sounded gentle enough and when I felt something placed around my neck and a tugging touch I obediently followed.

I walked outside the place of cages and cruelty into warm sunshine and into a vehicle. Pointing to the floor he made a sound,  I lay still watching, the thing began to move. I trembled with fear, what did this mean? Where was I being taken?

He made the strange sounds, not like we dogs but deep in his throat, odd and different. One noise he seemed to say often ‘Ben.’  He made lots of throat noises I didn’t understand but this Ben he said more than any other and always with a gentle pat. I looked up at him and slowly wagged my tail. Not a lot, just enough so I’d not get hit with the belt buckle. I have never stop thinking about that pain.

He is kind, never cruel, and I wag my tail every time he pats my head. He gives me meat to eat, and he named me Ben.

©2017

 

 


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