For the Love of my Dog

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

To my fur baby, Ivan the Terrible. You saved me. You are my protector. And I will always protect you and love you forever.

Gasping for breath

Barefoot I pounded the cement

And turned the earth a centimeter with every step

No, I won't let you go

Please don't leave

Stinging lungs

But I wouldn't let him go

I love you. I love you. I love you.

Run run run, keep running

Never stop running

A wild dog & a wild woman

Tame one or let go of the other

He would show me what loyalty looked like

"He'll stay with you, I promise"

My boyfriend said as he had his thumb on the latch

"Nooo... no... I don't think"

"Don't take him off his leash"

"Watch, he'll stay."

"No, don't."

As soon as my dog realized he was free

He bolted across the street

"God dammit, mother fucker"

It was 42 degrees outside

And I tipped the earth 1 degree with every step

No, don't go. I won't let you go.

You're the last piece of me I have

You're my only hope

All I had was my boyfriend and my dog

Every inch of my life had been taken away

And within I had one last strand

"Don't leave!"

My dog was having a blast

He loved the game we were playing

I try to catch him

He does figure 8,888's

Sprinting onto the university president's property

Sharp left turn

Rounding the bases

Needing to bring him home

I enter the property

Feet first

Dead of night

So dark

Tracking him

Desperately escaping

Pushing breath

Into my lungs

Twice as hard

Cold wet grass


Nope, swimming pool cover

Almost slipped through the crack

Wouldn't have been found till summer

On the surface, a foot deep in freezing water

Every gradient I touched barefoot

And survived somehow

Stabbing woodchips

Rough gravel

And I couldn't be stopped


Still trotting and halting so I miss him

Looking back and smiling hard at me

Maybe he was leading me away from him

With all his might

A thousand woodchips I crushed beneath me

Certain my feet were bleeding

One last figure 8

I lunge at him



I hold on as tight as I can

"Don't ever do that to me again!"


Good lord he is heavy

I pick him up and drag us toward home

Feet gripping the earth at 164 pounds a foot

Heavier and lighter at the same time

Uggghhhhh, thank God

I had my baby boy back

Relief filled up from within me

My boyfriend’s car pulls up

"Babe, I'm SO sorry"

I turn and growl

I grip my sweet puppy and feel his warmth and it fills me up to the brim

Everything else was stopping me from leaving him

But for the love of my dog.



"A 2017 study showed that 89% of women who had companion animals during an abusive relationship reported that their animals were threatened, harmed, or killed by their abusive partner."


Submitted: November 20, 2020

© Copyright 2021 Roxanne Byrne. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:


Criss Sole

I was deeply touched as i read this. And i'm glad you brought awareness to animal cruelty.
Ivan sounds like such a character, and i am so glad you have each other.

Wed, November 25th, 2020 4:49pm


Thank you so much Criss! I'm sorry it took me a while to get back to this. I'm so happy you were touched by my story. And yes, when I first found out about the connection between animal cruelty and domestic violence I felt that it really needed to be talked about more. It's hard to believe anyone would abuse an innocent little animal.

Thank you again for commenting, your thoughts on my work mean so much to me!

Mon, January 11th, 2021 8:44pm

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