Long-time readers know all about Joe, from his hosta adventures, his shameful Bubbles White Schmeltz adventure and as cover boy for LONNIE, ME AND THE HOUND OF HELL. So here’s the thing: Joe is getting old. He’s probably 11 or 12 now. He’s a rescue dog, so I’m not certain, but it’s around that.
Joe still acts a lot like a pup. He gets into trouble in an amusing number of ways. He barks at people he knows perfectly well and is as likely as not to ignore strangers. On an SAT test, the correct answer would be Joe is to Deer and Rabbits in the Garden as Politicians are to Lobbyists.
But. There are more white hairs around his muzzle than there used to be. He hasn’t stopped jumping up on people because he’s finally been trained but because he has arthritis in his hind legs. He relishes his food more in anticipation than he does in fact.
I’ve spoken to Oldest Grandson, whose dog he really is, and Oldest Grandson has asked me to take the dog to the vet for release when I feel the time is right. He doesn’t want us to drag the dog through treatments or pain or debility.
But when is the time right? It’s hard for the dog to get up, especially when it’s cold. But, once up, he runs and frisks and leans against me for petting. When is the time right?
When is the time right?
WRITING PROMPT: Imagine a character with this question in his or her life, about an animal, a loved one, an enemy, him or herself.