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Letter to an Adoptable Dog
Cartoon Dog

Dear Adoptable Dog:

Please find attached my curriculum vitae, submitted for consideration for the position as your person. As you can see from my history, I have a lengthy and proven track record of excellence and responsibility in all aspects of pet worship. I can provide documentation in the form of photo albums, memorial stones, clothes with muddy paw-print stains and memories etched in my heart.

Fun One
Waste Management Administrator
Curator, Dead Things
Fecal Quality Assurance Manager (Served on the infamous 1999 “Intestinal Bug Diarrhea” Tour.)
Veterinary Liaison
Collection Specialist, Torn-Paper-Towel-Roll Division
Inventory Control, Victuals
Inventory Control, Recreational Items
Inventory Control, Fashion Accessories
Inventory Control, Anything Else You Want or Need to be Happy
Certified Toy-Batting-Abatement Technician (My motto: Like it Never Even Happened!)
Wide-Spectrum Stains Eradication Team Leader (Taught “Introduction to Blotting” for many years.)
Limousine Driver (Have my own stretch Subaru.)
Grooming or Grooming-Mitigation Expert (Whichever you prefer.)
Bedding Evaluation and Selection Specialist (Hashtag #Themoreitcoststhebetter)
Chuck-It Master (Top speed, clocked at 57 MPH, longest throw, 40 feet.)
Plant, Yard and Soil Restoration Management (Designed excavations repair program You Dig, I Fill.)
Nutritional Counselor (And if that doesn’t work, Flatulence Coordinator.)
Psychological Consultant (Well versed in the canine mind, having apprenticed with several, shall we say, “focused” dogs.)
Squeaker Collector

I am not only hard-working and have a great sense of humor, I firmly believe in three things: bringing home a fresh-roasted, grocery-store chicken every week (yes, the kind you will smell before I round the last corner); giving you your bedding right out of the dryer when it’s at its warmest and fluffiest; and finally (my most fervently held belief when it comes to dogs), never talking on a cell phone while walking a dog.

I hope you will consider me for the position.

Elaine Sichel
Prospective Human Companion

This article first appeared in The Bark,
Issue 75: Fall 2013

Elaine Sichel lives in Santa Barbara, Calif.; she worked for and served on the board of a San Francisco Bay Area animal shelter for 25 years before relocating to a climate more pleasing to her dogs.

Illustration by Hiranonsa

CommentsPost a Comment
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Submitted by dee | August 28 2013 |


Submitted by Laura | August 28 2013 |

I understand why this was chosen as the winner...it's wonderful. Beautifully written with humour, but brimming over with love of the dog. I enjoyed it very much.

Submitted by Frances Hogan | August 28 2013 |

My stepmother used to cook hamburger for her 2 dogs every morning; we humans, including her, made do with cold cereal. For some reason, my stepmother became upset when she heard my sister say to me, "When I die, I want to come back as one of Sally's dog."

After reading this article, I know whose dog I want to be after my own reincarnation!

Submitted by Jo | August 29 2013 |

That is wonderfully written and speaks to all of who are avid dog lovers. Thank you.

Submitted by Theresa Houseman | January 6 2014 |

It was wonderful (my face aches from smiling so hard and so long) to read about your love for dogs, Elaine! I began my Walk of Love in July 2012 with a little rescue I named Tika. You wrote so much about what I can relate to. Especially the warm bedding -- she has a particularly sweet expression when I bury her in that warmth (planned to happen right after her Sunday bath!). Thanks for the love....

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