The Dogs

by Veritism
(New Zealand)

Back when I was young, I had two dogs.
Well, technically, my elder brother and sister had a dog each. A golden Labrador, and a tiny white terrier mix of some kind.

Anyway, late one night, I remembered I was meant to feed the dogs that day. We take turns, see, and I was always terrible at remembering. My sister was at work that night, as was my mother, and my dad and brother didn't live with us any more. So it was my turn.

I put on my shoes and grabbed a torch, then went out to feed the dogs. The food is kept in the garage, which has a really squeaky door. I opened it quickly and stepped inside- I never liked the sound of it, it kind of freaked me out. I grabbed the food as fast as I could with my limited light source and headed back out again.

I could barely see outside of my torch's light, so I made my way slowly and carefully towards the dog run - past the wood shed, past the washing line, past the garden, and then I was there. It was curious- usually at this point the dogs would be barking, demanding their food, but today they were quiet. Mentally I thanked them for not trying to annoy the neighbors yet again.
I managed to unlatch the gate while holding the dog food and a torch and pushed the gate open, walking inside quickly before it could shut on me. I made my way over to the kennels without incident.

That worried me. The dogs would usually be all over me, begging for their food. Surely they couldn't be asleep already... I poured their food into both their bowls and started back to the exit. But when I got there, I paused. Why hadn't they barked, or run around me, or started eating? When I searched with my torch I couldn't see much - it wasn't a very good torch, and the dog run is overgrown because we can't mow in there too often, or the dogs would run off.

So, I moved deeper into the run once more. I kept moving my torch back and forth, making quiet noises to lure the dogs towards me. Suddenly, I spotted the larger of the two dogs - Her head was down, eyes flashing eerily in the torchlight. I sighed in relief. The terrier soon followed, standing by her side in much the same way.
"Go get your food, go on," I encouraged. Something stranger happened then. They both growled at me, flattening their ears. I paused.
"... What? Your food' over there," I said nervously, pointing in the general direction of the kennels. They continued growling lowly. Then she leaped.

I was knocked backwards by it, hit the ground with a thud, and all the air was forced out of me. I felt her fangs connect with my shoulder- they would've hit my neck if I hadn't twisted, trying to get away. I felt another set of jaws latch onto my leg - the smaller of the two dogs, of course. Something thick, warm and wet was dripping onto me, on my arm, but I ignored that for now, just struggling to break the grip on me. The bigger dog let go of my shoulder, but now bit into my neck,and I saw darkness - darker than the shadows around me - at the edge of my vision. Then everything went black.

I tell you this story now, as I lie here in my bed, attached to cables and drips and packets of blood, that dogs aren't quite as loyal as they seem. This is what they do, you see. They gain your trust, your friendship, and when you are vulnerable, they strike. I never recovered from the bites, never healed. The black, viscous liquid remains on my skin like glue, refusing to break its hold on my arm, and I wait. It's a marker, see. They can smell it. I now just wait for them to return. They don't give up.

Just last night, I heard growling outside my door. Soon they'll figure out how to open it, and they'll come at night, to finish me off. As I write this, it may be my last chance to warn you. They'll come tonight, I'm sure. Whoever finds this, please, let it be published somewhere, anywhere. In a paper, in the news, even just somewhere on the internet. Spread the story, spread the warning - Don't Trust The Dogs.

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