Fleegle and I park in front of the pet supply store.
“I’m coming with,” Fleegle announces.
“I wouldn’t have it any other way.” I take hold of his leash and we hop out of the car.
The store entrance is lined with dog toys from squeaky balls to fluffy pink bunnies.
Fleegle stops and stares at a fuzzy toy puppy on the top shelf. “Look, Raud, the stork has been here,” he says, referring to the story I told him about where babies come from, that storks bring them.
“Maybe a toy stork.”
Fleegle sniffs in its direction. “Oh, he’s good. Had me fooled, almost as good as you.”
“How do you mean?”
“Sometimes when you’re watching your television you don’t move for so long that I think you might be a stuffed toy. That’s when I bump you in the back of your head with my nose, just to check that you’re real.”
“A cold wet nose.”
“When you’re bald it will be even colder.”
I make a sour face at him. “If I go bald I’ll wear a hat to stay warm.”
“Bald or not, you’re the same Raud to me.”
We hit the food aisle and I pull a bag of kibble off the shelf and Fleegle sniffs it.
“Does it smell fresh?” I ask.
He looks up at me. “Define fresh.”
I look at the sell by date. It’s a long ways out. “As you would say, Fleegle, you could run to the moon and back and it would still be fresh.”
He cocks his head to the side. “Like I said, define fresh.”