Gossip Like Bichons and Poodles

by | Aug 8, 2023 | Fiction, Issue Thirty-Four

On spring and summer evenings, you can hear them, the dogs sending messages to each other, the warm air a telegraph wire. Sometimes phone calls. Sometimes emails. Please advise. Attached please find. Per my previous email. Sometimes text messages. Even sexts. The boxer who wasn’t neutered. Butt pics. Dick pics. Sometimes love letters. You can tell a beagle bark, a chihuahua whine, a Weimaraner’s whimper. Will you come over tonight, meet me out behind the treehouse in the Martins’ yard? One bark for yes, two for no. Did you hear that the Browns’ baby dropped a burger on the ground and no one picked it up? That Loretta the Lhasa apso had ten pups? Ten! The dogs whisper, shout, and gossip like bichons and poodles, the ones who just have to know everything. Just trying to find that social connection. Just trying to belong. They follow the trends, dutifully wearing sweatshirts that say The Snuggle Is Real. They all circle six times before lying down, before pooping. And that little black shih-poo, Ripples, he circles when he’s about to get a treat. On spring and summer nights, after the messages are all sent out, their humans fast in bed, the dogs close their laptops, leave their cell phones in the backyard, sometimes buried with a bone, set their mental alarms, and the world goes silent all at once.

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