* K9 Bone Alley

K9 Bone Alley, a light, fun read, this story gained second place in our club’s (Hibiscus Writers Club) children’s competition. Enjoy!

Hello, my friends. Let me introduce myself. My name is Harvey and I currently live at K9 Bone Alley.
I have no pedigree to speak of. I’m a mutt, a bit of everything. I am not the most attractive canine you’re likely to meet. My body is stocky and, my legs are short. I am brindle in colour. Like a beacon, my tail waggles in the air.
Excess flaps of skin kinda droop around my mouth and, when I get excited, globules of slobbery saliva slither down my jowls. It’s not good etiquette to dribble, and I try my hardest to not to do this.
But it’s what’s on the inside that counts, right? And I do have one endearing feature: my eyes. Round and soulful, my eyes are difficult to resist especially, when I tilt my head to the side. Being a rescue dog, I am desperate to win the affections of my new pets and make this, my third home, my for-ever home.
At K9 Bone Alley, I have a large yard to romp around in during the day, my own special house with a cosy blanket and soft pillow providing shelter from all weathers’ and, the yummiest food ever! Who could want for more?
Best of all, there’s no pesky cat, like at the last place.
A pesky cat got me evicted from my last home. The day I sent that furry feline scurrying up the lounge curtain, spelt curtains for me, so to speak. With a flick of his tail, that cat tumbled a ballerina figurine from a shelf to shatter on the floor.
Let me introduce my new pet family. Firstly, there’s Dad Hominid who every evening takes me for a long stroll along the riverbank. I race around like crazy, sniffing and barking with wild abandon.
Mum Hominid feeds me the most delicious morsels. She rolls me on my back and tickles my stomach and scratches me behind my ears. Bliss.

Boy Hominid and I play fetch with a ball or stick in the yard. Boy is sports-crazy.
Girl Hominid is learning to play the trumpet. She produces teeth-clenching, ear-splitting sounds. With my head held high, I attempt to harmonise with melodious yowls. Girl is applauded where-as I am shunted outdoors with a stern telling off.
Granddad Hominid, with his walking stick by his side, sits in his big chair all day. He watches game shows and Reality TV. I’ve tried bonding with him by flopping on the couch or at his slippered feet, giving him my endearing eye-look. My effort is a dog-gone waste of time. He ignores me.
Granddad never speaks. The only sounds he makes are his epic farts. They are whoppers, capable of clearing the lounge in ten seconds flat.
Cute Toddler Hominid with his curly blond hair, – yes, you call it hair for humans, not fur – is the one I most enjoy spending time with. When Mum is distracted, he drops me tidbits from his high-chair. Toddler and I spend hours digging holes in the sand-pit together.
Like a meaty bone from the butchers, life at K9 Bone Alley is sweet. But lately, dodgy happenings have hounded this happy arrangement, beginning with Dad’s missing toothbrush.
“Has anyone seen my toothbrush?” he shouted from the bathroom.
No one had. Two days later, Mum found it buried in the soil near the geraniums.
“My trumpet is missing,” Girl howled.
Dad found the trumpet under the tarpaulin covering the wood-pile.
“Mum, I can’t find my rugby socks. I need them for the game,” Boy whined.
One sock was discovered under the pillow in my outdoor house.
Today, Mum baked a cake, leaving it to cool on the bench. “Who has eaten a chunk of my cake?” She glowers at us all.
“Own up!” No-one confesses.
One of Granddad’s slippers is missing. “Granddad, I’ve found your slipper.”
Dad emerges from the toilet holding a sodden article resembling a drowned rat, in his hand.
All eyes focus on me.
Granddad points his walking stick at me. “He’s the culprit. The toothbrush, the trumpet, the socks, the cake and now my slipper. It’s him. That mutt’s gotta go!” he says dogmatically.
My eyes water at such hurtful lies.
I give my most soulful look.
I tilt my head.
I’m ignored. I’m in the dog-box, as the saying goes.
Mum returns to the kitchen. The cake mixer begins to whir.
Dad and Boy retreat to the yard and throw the football around.
Granddad increases the volume on the TV remote.
An ear-splitting noise trumpets over-head drowning the canned laughter from the television.
Disgraced, I lie down, cover my eyes with my front paws and ponder this conundrum.
I feel a gentle stroke on my back. Turning my head, I look into the sorrowful eyes of Toddler.
My ears perk upright.
I feel a dribble drooling at my mouth.
My whiskers twitch.
I know the truth.
With my nose, I nudge Toddlers’ hand. I wag my tail and pad outside to the sand-pit. Toddler follows. This time, we don’t dig. We talk.
“I did it. I did it all,” he sobs. “I wanted you to be my pet, only mine.”
I don’t correct him on this technical point. I whimper.
“I’m sorry.” He wraps his arms around my neck. “I don’t want you to leave.”
With a sloppy face-licking, I forgive him.
Later, snuggled close to Mum on the couch, Toddler tearfully confesses to the happenings.
With his head tilted to one side, his round soulful eyes, glisten. “Please, let Harvey stay.”
Mum nods and smiles.
I’ve been pardoned!
I’m dribbling with excitement!
K9 Bone Alley is my for-ever home.
Everyone showers me with attention, everyone except Granddad.
This evening, the pets and I watch a reality show called ‘Survivor.’
I squiggle-worm my body close to Granddads feet, one slippered, one not.
I let rip a real plonker, a mighty Grandfather stinker.
My pets jump to their feet, holding their noses, and shout in unison:

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