So there's this guy who lives in my neighborhood. Almost every day he drives around and feeds treats to pets.
(He even feeds the feral cats.)
Now, maybe it's because I've always got suspense on the brain, but when I first moved into the neighborhood, I was leery of him.
What kind of grown man rides around and feeds other people's pets?
Was he poisoning the animals?
Was he casing the houses he visited?
Then, after I got my dog, he stopped me while I was walking her on the street one day and asked if he could give her a treat. He was very respectful about it and didn't take out any food until I'd given him my permission.
Sure, there are people who feed their pets special diets and don't won't their animals to eat whatever he's handing out. (Milkbone biscuits for dogs, don't know what he gives the cats.) but my dog is a shelter mutt and she'll happily eat just about anything.
Now we're a regular stop on the treat giver's route. Even if we're not home when he stops by, he leaves the treats for the dog.
And I swear it's the highlight of my dog's day. She's figured out that this person is coming just to see her, to give her a treat and a pet and a kind word, and that he'll be back soon to do it all over again.
She gets excited if she hears his truck. She gets excited if she sees him on the street. She greets him with butt wriggling joy every single time I open my door to him.
I don't think my dog's special. I'm sure most of the dogs he visits do the same thing. But here's what I've figured out over these quick little visits of his.
It's not just my dog that's getting something out of it. The man enjoys them too. And watching both man and dog share a moment of joy makes me smile each and every time.
We need more people to deliver joy...even if it's in the form of dog treats.