The sky arched over us like a giant blue dome with fluffy white cotton balls pasted to the top of it. The sun peeked out from behind one of them like a giant yellow ball playing hide and seek. It was perfect. Not just the sky, but the weather, not too hot, not too cold … just right.
“Sit Mylo,” Mommy purred in that sing song voice of hers and like a good puppy, I planted my butt firmly on the ground.
“Good boy,” she cooed, holding out a yummy piece of chicken for me to nibble on.
Chicken! Mommy sure did know the key to this puppy’s heart. I love chicken. If only I could find a chicken tree, I would lay under it and chow down on that delicious tastiness all day.
Out of nowhere, Mommy produced a green fuzzy ball and held in high in the air. My gosh, that woman is a magician!
“Gooooooooooooooooooo, get it!” she called out with a giggle and threw it as far as she could.
“Yes!” I barked, then turned and took off after it.
There is nothing like the feeling of your ears flopping in the breeze or the solidness of the ground under you to remind you of how free you truly are. I locked onto the ball with my eyes, watching it smash into the ground a few feet in front of me, the collision sending it on its way airborne again.
My body tingled all over, and my heart began to pound in my chest at the mere thought of grabbing ahold of that ball.
It hit the ground with a thud, but this time it was more like a hop than it was soaring like the last time. I had begun to close in fast and now that hop had turned into a roll.
I hit the brakes and slid to a near stop. In a single fluid motion, I snatched the ball up into my mouth and clenched down on it with my jaws. With my front paws dug firmly into the ground, momentum led my back side past me, fishtailing until I had made a complete one eighty.
I saw Mommy on the other side of a field of clover, her hands waving at me, her voice, infused with excitement calling to me, telling me what a good boy I am. I felt my inside’s swell with pride. The extra boost of adrenaline propelled me forward towards her, my little legs churning faster than they ever had before. Her face was drawing closer, her smile broad and joyous.
Then, I tripped and began to fell down a deep dark hole. I tumbled like a load of laundry spinning in a machine in what seemed like an endless pit. I wanted to yell, but no words would come out. Soon, even the light from the sun disappeared and I was in a free fall in total inky blackness.
“Oh my poor baby,” I heard Mommy’s voice coo. I tried to open my eyes, but it was so difficult. I did manage to succeed, but only for a second, and just long enough to see the blurry outline of Mommy smiling at me.
“You did good little guy.”
Daddy’s voice. Daddy is here too. I wasn’t feeling very good at all, and while I was still in the darkness, at least I wasn’t falling anymore. I wanted so much to open my eyes, but it just wasn’t happening.
At last, a veil fell over me, and everything disappeared.
“Hey Cindee, I think he is coming to,” a deep latin voice filled my head.
My eyes blinked open, but the world was still fuzzy. I just wanted to cry, but after a second or two, the big orange cat slowly came into focus.
“Cindee,” he called again.
“Coming Rapi,” the familiar voice of my best friend called back.
I lifted my head and smiled at the sight of the big brown labrador mix strolling into the room. A quick scan of her face revealed an expression of relief.
“Welcome home Mylo!”
“Thanks,” I croaked.
Awareness of my surroundings had begun to filter into my brain, but it was still a little difficult to process the information. It took a minute or two before I realized that I had been locked in the crate.
“Oh no, let me out,” I protested as I struggled to my feet, then promptly collapsed back down.
“You need to lay down and rest a little,” Rapi said looking directly at me.
As I stared back at him, I saw something truly disturbing reflected in his deep yellow-green eyes. I didn’t believe it as first. With my left paw I reached for my head and was horrified at what I found. My head was encased in a piece of clear plastic.
“Don’t worry, it’s just a cone of shame.”
The voice, along with a giggle, came from a slightly chubby grey and white cat who had just entered the room and plopped down next to Rapi.
“Be nice Bella,” the orange cat scolded her, while Cindee shot a threatening look in her direction.
“W…w…what’s it doing there. Take it off! Take it off!”
My pleading fell on deaf ears.
“We can’t. The doctor put it on to protect you,” Rapi explained in a gentle voice.
“Doctor? What Doctor?”
Cindee and Rapi looked at each other, confusion washed over both of their faces.
“Don’t you remember,” the big brown dog asked.
“Remember,” I whispered.
I lay my head down again, now more puzzled than ever.
Surrounded by my friends, I let my mind rewind through the day.
“I remember waking up seeing you guys. Before that, I was running through the park playing fetch with Mommy until I fell into a big hole.”
I stopped when I saw the look on everyone’s face. Rapi and Cindee looked worried but didn’t say anything. Bella on the other hand was looking at me cross eyed twirling her paw around her head, indicating I was crazy, until one of Rapi’s big orange paws slapped her across the face.
“Don’t pay any attention to her Mylo. Just go on, what do you remember before … before the park?” Cindee asked, leaning forward to look into my eyes.
“Okay. Before that I was … I was. I can’t remember!” I squealed.
“Just take a deep breath, and try again,” Rapi said in a slow deep tone that sounded more like a hypnotist than an oversized cat.
I took his advice though and inhaled deeply, then let it all out.
“Good, again,” he prompted me.
So, I did it again.
“Now close your eyes, what do you remember,” the cat asked.
“I remember … I remember Doctor Bob. He was talking to Mommy and Daddy, then took me in a back room and poked me with a needle and then … then I was at the park,” I said, more confused than ever.
The dog and orange cat looked at each other again, this time smiling.
“You had a surgery Mylo,” Cindee said, her face still wearing a happy grin.
“What did they do,” I asked.
“It was nothing major, we all had that surgery,” Rapi answered reassuringly, but without answering my question.
“What did they do?” I re-iterated my question.
“You will be feeling back to your old self in no time,” the brown dog chimed in.
“What … did … they … do,” agitation and a tad bit of anger spilled out in my words.
“You were fixed,” Bella blurted out, giggles erupting from behind her paw which now covered her mouth.
I broke out in a cold sweat and glanced down at my pee pee, then screamed at the top of my lungs …