All four of us anxiously peered through the transparent door. The white,
shiny tiled floor barely peeked through all of the spread out fur balls. As
soon as my father's work boots tapped the floor, all the tiny bodies
scurried away like ants after having their home destroyed. All of them
accept one lazy, lonely, runt that just barely lifted his head and blinked
his oval bronze eyes at us. Then he slowly gained his balance and crept over
and plopped down in between my father's boots. His ears were floppy, and his
wormlike tongue just plopped out of his mouth while he panted constantly.
The puppy's coat was almost jet black, except for his ears that were tipped
a burnt sienna. His paws were no bigger than my three-year-old thumbs and
head no bigger than my palm as I stroked and patted him. My mother and
father, with eyes shimmering, glanced at my brother and I, as our family
knew this was definitely the canine we were looking for.
At the time, there was a sappy kids dog movie that my brother and I watched
quite often, "Milo and Otis." The dog that co-starred in the movie was named
Otis. This seemed to suit our family's fancy, so we now decided our
full-blooded German shepherd's name was going to be "Otis." It's funny how a
name can characterize a pet so much more than you think. After having picked
out a name, and Otis beginning to catch on, his personality really started
to show through. He was a very playful and joyous dog. You could tell from
the beginning that Otis had a certain intelligence about him, which made him
so human-like. Which in part is why he was a fifth member of our family. We...