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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Outgoing (05/05/11)

TITLE: Sparky
By Clyde Blakely


He is short and fat with spindly little legs. He tries to keep up the best he can, smiling all the time. He didn’t like me when we first met. I really don’t blame him.

Momma found him alongside the road, ribs sticking out, stomach sucked in, and mud hiding the many scars she found after bathed. That bath, though, came after a long coaxing to get into her car. How he survived for so long and where he came from was never determined. A mixed breed for sure but his beautiful head reveals some Pit Bull perhaps, though he stands much shorter than a Pit. Was he used as “pit bait”? Is that where the scars came from?

Momma named him Sparky. “Sparky” he really wasn’t though. We fed him, petted him, walked and ran him, learning he could chase a ball, knew the command to sit and stay, he never did his business in the house, and we loved him while he learned to love us. We watched him slowly become part of our “pack” of other dogs, Border Collies. We saw the fear in his eyes changed to adoration. We still have Sparky, loving on him while he is here. And he has earned his name. Both by his wonderful transformation and also by the spark his puts in our hearts daily.

We can’t see Sparky’s ribs any more. In fact, with deep probing we can barely discern them. His stomach is full and he eats less now because there is always plenty dry food in their dishes all the time. No longer the shy, fearful dog, alone along a country road; he meets us with a smile at the gate. Once in awhile I catch myself singing “How much is that doggie in the window, the one with the wagglely tail…” This graying dog has become priceless to us.

But, Lord, why do they have to go so soon? Taking a part of our hearts with them each time, and those now with us steal their way in. Will I get those pieces back from them at our reunion time with You? I hope so. You teach us Your love through so many ways, dogs being only one. Yet such a strong one.

Sparky, as with our other animals, will one day have his “outgoing” but for now I’ll continue to explore Your love revealed through all of Your creation. While thanking You for Sparky.

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This article has been read 267 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 05/12/11
Good gave us animals as pets because he knew how therapeutic they are. I just bought a Pom puppy that I am hoping I'll train as a therapy pet to visit the sick and elderly. Very nice story.
Noel Mitaxa 05/16/11
A nice warm story, with a reminder of how dogs show their loyalty and appreciation. Dogs have owners, but cats have staff. A couple of very minor grammar glitches did not spoil the effect.
Linda Goergen05/20/11
I loved this story! So touching and shows the loving character, not only of Sparky, but of you and your wife for rescuing him! I have four dogs of my own, three little Shih-Tzu and one big baby black lab! I also know the pain of losing a beloved dog. I sure hope dogs go to Heaven! LOL Enjoyed the read!