Man's Best Friend


Rick had been employed at the same place for the past 15 years; however, the company was now struggling to stay in business. With 1100 employees and 12 locations, major decisions and cut backs had to be made. Having no choice they had to close most of their locations. Rick and 700 other people were laid off. Rick put his chin up, moved out of his apartment and into his motor home. It was a good thing his ex-wife did not want it. His new home would his 1981 35’ blue and white Wander lodge.

Due to these recent circumstances, which were beyond his control, he could not keep his dog. Mocha, a 10-year-old Akita would not have enough room in RV. He had to find someone who could take her. However, if they knew the truth they would not want the dog. He had a hard time finding a new home for Mocha. Some of his friends would let him keep her in their back yard, as long as Rick was the one to feed and walk her. It was not convenient to go to and from the R.V. Park. He had to find permanent arrangements.

A man named Mark that Rick did business with on occasion, bragged how he and his wife finally bought their first home. Rick had a plan. Rick sat back smiling as Mark used their favorite forum to inform everyone of the large property. Mark’s family would be moving from a small quarter acre property to a 10-acre one. The property was only 2 hours from Rick’s location. Rick emailed Mark, relaying his situation. He asked Mark if he and his family would take care of Mocha for him. Mark had two requests before he would agree: one Rick would pay for the dog’s expenses; two, Rick would spend a couple of days at Mark’s to make sure Mocha would get along with the other animals and integrate into the family. Rick agreed and told Mark he would bring the dog this weekend June 11.

Mark called Rick on June 12, but there was no answer. On July 2, Rick had called and said he was bringing Mocha. Rick did not show up until July 23. This irritated Mark’s wife, Bonnie. She had already told Mark the last time Rick did not show up that he was not reliable. She also told Mark to tell Rick they would not be able to take the dog. Nevertheless, Mark wanted to be helpful. Rick finally showed up with Mocha on July 30. Rick spent time talking to the family, then left quickly, stating he could not stay. Mark looked at his wife who wore a disapproving look on her face as she shook her head.

The following morning, Bonnie woke to the strangest noise. She threw her robe on and rushed outside. In the corner of the yard, she found her puppy whimpering and all wet around the neck. She wrapped the puppy in her robe and went back inside. After drying off the puppy, she discovered the wetness was blood. She discovered deep puncture wounds around the little puppy’s neck. Mark came down wondering what was going on. Bonnie explained what she thought had happened, that Mocha had jumped the back yard fence and “played” with the puppy as if she was a toy. Bonnie treated the puppy, and felt confident the puppy would be fine. The puppy would need to recover in the house, though.

Mocha was lead into the backyard. Mark knew Bonnie was beside herself. He said he would make sure Mocha would not have access to the front yard again. The following week Mocha tried to “play” with a newborn goat, having jumped over the fence separating two acres. Mark called Rick to request he come pickup Mocha but there was no answer.

Roxanna, Mark’s daughter was petting Mocha when she discovered a large lump under Mocha’s fur. She called to her dad, pointing it out. After showing Bonnie, they looked through her long coat and found Mocha had folliculitis. After a vet visit, it was confirmed, to their surprise that Mocha also had cancer. Rick had left a sick dog in their care.

Again, Mark tried to call Rick, again no answer. For the next month, Mark tried calling, emailing, and texting Rick to no avail. Mark knew Rick would not call back.

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