Can You Hold

– Is Paula there?

– Um, I don’t think I’ve seen her yet today…

– That’s okay. I can just….I can just talk to you.

– Okay.

– I think I…(voice tightens)…I think I need to put my dog down today.

– Okay.

– I had been talking to Paula about him…we’ve tried everything, we’ve had him for three years and I…I just can’t trust him anymore.

– Okay.

– He bit me today. Twice. When I was trying to put him in the car.

– Did he break skin?

 He drew blood, yes.

– I’m sorry.

– And he’s never had any bad experiences in the car or anything…no trauma. My husband and I have tried for three years to help him, we’ve done everything. And I’ve had bites and scratches and bruises.

– …

– And I have a toddler and a new baby now.

– Yes.

 And….I don’t know why I am telling you all this…

– That’s okay.

– I was going to sign him up for class…I sent in a check. Can you tear it up? My name is___.

– Yes, no problem.

– Thank you.

– I’m sorry you had to make such a difficult decision, but it sounds to me like you made the right one.

– …(cries).

– …

– Thank you. Okay, bye.

– Bye.

///

I found her check and registration form in the mail that day. Her dog’s name? “Boo Kitty.”

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