A Taradiddle: The Dog Tales #3 - By Lillow Mi

   I'm a Hound Dog and my job is to howl at the moon and bark at the stars. I'd been performing it diligently and assiduously since its inception, which is also my earliest memory. The only time I had off was a few days each month around the new moon, although I still barked at the stars. There's just so many! I've often been awarded the title Good Dog despite various attempts to curb my barking, my sleeping habits, and my somewhat overzealous dietary adventures, to the point of sometimes even receiving Bad Dog warnings. I remained, nonetheless, primarily a Good Dog, and my name is Rover. You may think the name common but in fact, I have never met another Dog named Rover. Not ever, and I have a wide circle of friends and acquaintances, many of whom are actual Dogs. My neighbor Spike is one such who also has a unique name. That was probably what sparked our friendship, the name thing. I mean we were surrounded by Charleys, Sams, Lorettas, Olivias and all the other names that were common to both Dogs and Humans, but not me and Spike. Oh, no, very few others used our names.  

   Spike and I grew to be steadfast friends, despite our other seeming differences. For example, while Spike enjoyed howling at the moon and barking at the stars, it was not his primary employment. Rather Spike's main activities were eating and tail wagging, traits he claimed were derived from being part of a multidimensional being named Sugfissel. Spike was purportedly the stomach and tail of Sugfissel and thus his employment involved eating and tail wagging. Fortunately he was also a darn good howler. 

   Diligence is a trait we shared and over time my barking and howling, along with Spike's eating, howling and tail wagging, became works of art. Performance art I guess you could say. We were masters. We performed at various venues but I think our favorite was behind the manor where Spike lived because there were fewer interventions. There was another guy living at the manor named Alley but he never barked or wagged his tail and worse, was reported to be a finicky eater. Yet we all became friends anyway. Sometimes Alley would yowl when Spike and I were howling, especially when the moon was full and I must say, we sounded good. Very good. 

   Eventually we formed a trio, The Doggone Three. We hired a Monkey who lives at the manor to be our drummer and Sweet Loretta, a Poodle from mythical Gresham, as rhythm yipper. Oh we were something! We had sold out shows all the way from Here to There! Before we knew it, we were big stars performing at Doggywood, Dog Planet and more! We were called before the King to receive the Royal & Well-Marked Medal of the Good Dog! Alley and that monkey, a kid named Ishytoo were, amazingly enough, unsure if they wanted to be known as Good Dogs, but we were finally able to convince them, and we all became proud members of the Royal Good Dog Society. We have paw prints in the Big Star section of sidewalk by Gladsheim Palace, I mean we were big! We were recognized everywhere we went. 

   But the group finally broke up due to irreconcilable differences. Ishytoo and Alley just did not like Dog biscuits anymore. Dog biscuits were an understandable staple in the Doggone Three's menu. We got 'em everywhere we went. But Ishytoo preferred those biscuits of flour and butter like what Witches make, while Alley preferred some fishy biscuits with cheese and butter, also made by Witches. It got to the point where neither would even touch a Dog biscuit! What manner of beings are these? Spike and I are seriously confused, and Sweet Loretta's with us on this, I mean, how could anybody not like Dog biscuits?

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