'I, dog' by Mae Osbourn


15 April 2020
Adults and over 13's short story competition entry.

Day 1

My humans are home today! They are my pack and I am their alpha and I love them. Little humans were very excited I reckon, they kept running around like they'd had too many treats, and throwing my ball. I love my ball, so fuzzy and sandy and, more often than not, covered in slobber, did I mention that I love my ball? Bigger human seemed not so pleased, even after I gave her a kiss.

Biggest human was even more stressed, he spent the whole day in his little room, shouting at the plastic toy angrily, it must have been a bad boy (I gave biggest human a kiss too, but he was too busy to notice).

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Day 2

I got a walk today! Or as my humans cunningly call it, a W-A-L-K. Ha! As if that could trick me. I trotted down the lane, tugging on the annoying bit of frayed rope. I do not see why I have to wear it just so they can keep up with me.

For some reason, my human kept crossing the road each time other humans came down the path. How is the world meant to recognise my natural charisma and loveliness if they have to stand a whole roads-width apart from me?

And then we reached the woods. I love the woods! With all the smells, and big sticks and small sticks and other dogs and their smells. Did I tell you how much I love the woods? There's all the smells and big sticks and small sticks and other dogs and their smells. As soon as I was set free I ran over to my favourite patch of grass, rolling onto my back and rubbing my whole body in the pungent stench, ignoring the distant cries of my human. I think this is because of something bigger human calls 'selective hearing'. This sounds serious, I think I should do some research.

Day 3

We are no longer allowed to visit old human who smells of Werther's Originals. Bigger human says it is about protecting him from a virus. I do not see why they don't just send me over, I am a good guard dog, I could protect him from this 'virus' fellow.

Day 4

I miss human who smells of Werther's Originals. I think he is at the vets. Poor human. I went there once the nice human with blue hands gave me treats, then I felt very sleepy. I should not have eaten that towel.

My humans all do work; I am very bored. So I helped the biggest human finish his sandwich when he was talking to the plastic toy angrily. He did not notice for a whole 30 seconds. I think he did not really want it. But then he started shouting at me angrily, so I must be a bad boy. I hope he will forgive me, I am now shut in the little room with the white machine that growls. It is very scary, I hope they let me out soon.

My nose is very itchy, I knocked over a box and this white powder went everywhere. I hope it does not mess up my hair. It does not taste nice - I know this because I was licking it off the tiled floor. I thinks bigger humans will not be pleased, maybe if I lie down and roll onto my back they will forgive me.

My human came for me! She let me out of the little room, then she started pointing at all of the flaky white powder that was now plastered to every surface, scattered over the beige tiles like snow, I just pretended that I had no idea what she was talking about. Sometimes I am very sneaky.

Day 5

The huge cat came back! So I told it to clear off my land and go back to whatever alleyway it crawled out of. Then it arched it's back and hissed at me. I am clearly far superior in every way. I told him this and his hair stood on end. I think this is because he is scared of me, so I told it that this was my property, and that it was trespassing, and that I had a cucumber and was not afraid to use it. The cat seemed to think about this.

I was wrong, the cat just hissed. I growled. The cat hissed again, he is getting a bit repetitive. Since I'm such an excellent guard dog, I alerted my humans of the criminal amongst us. They all came out and started shouting and waving their arms. I wagged my tail.

Little human has committed the unthinkable, she has betrayed me to the highest extent. I shall never forgive. She picked up the cat. And stroked it. She is no longer a member of my pack, she has committed treason of the highest order. She has been banished.

Day 6

I have changed my mind, little human gave me a belly rub so she has been eternally forgiven.

I found a wonderful gift, placed by my bed by my humans, obviously a token of their admiration. I ripped open the thin, plastic packaging, the little rolls of white paper flying through the room, as I sank my teeth into the many layers, thrashing my head as I gnawed at the hollow tubes inside, ignoring the chaos of paper that stormed like a fragile, paper hurricane around the room. I see now, they are toys.

But then the Little human stumbled in, shouting instantly as she spotted me. I wagged my tail at her, showing my gratitude for their gifts, pausing for a moment, letting the paper settle like snow around me. Suddenly, bigger humans came running, shouting, and pointing. I wagged my tail at them too.

They did not seem pleased. I am a bad boy. But how was I supposed to know that they needed them? They're supposed to buy their valiant leader gifts. I am not speaking to any of them...

 Until they give me a belly rub - or some bacon, I do not have a preference.

Write your own dog-themed short story

Do you love dogs? Do you love writing? Does your child love drawing? Are you looking for something to set your mind to and show off your creative skills? Then this is the perfect opportunity for you.

Find out how to enter here: www.yourdog.co.uk/short-story-competition