Sylvia and her little boy had to take their dog to the vet for surgery. They have been on the train for about half an hour, and Jackie is barking loudly all the way. Sylvia pulled him out of the cage several times, put him on her knees, and tried to calm him down.
All the people passing by looked sideways at Sylvia, but no one said anything bad because everyone saw that the woman was trying to calm the dog with all her might, but she could not. Finally, one rude man lost his temper and began to insult them.
It was a scorching day when Sylvia, her seven-year-old son Mike, and adorable dog Jackie were on the train going home. Sylvia made sure that her dog was comfortable inside a portable cage as they made their trip.
Since it was awfully hot, many passengers were short-tempered, and Jackie’s barking made them irritable. He barked loudly for half an hour despite Sylvia’s attempts to calm him down.
Many would look at Jackie, yet no one said a word as they saw the owner on her knees, doing all that she could do to calm the dog down. Sylvia would also apologize repeatedly to those around her whenever Jackie started making noise.
Finally, a man could no longer tolerate the noise and rudely said, “Hey, woman! Can you make your dog shut up?” Sylvia immediately apologized and said that her dog just had an operation and probably made a noise because of the pain. The man replied:
“So you’re saying that you went to another city specifically for your dog to have surgery?”
Sylvia nodded, adding that Jackie needed an urgent liver operation for survival, and no vet in their city had the medical equipment to perform the surgery. Any delay could have cost Jackie her life.
The man looked angry and surprised as he said, “Oh God, people are crazy! It’s just a dog, woman. Why go through all that trouble? People nowadays do not have enough medicine, and you treat dogs? Stupidity!”
Although embarrassed by the commotion that she caused, Sylvia could not stand to keep quiet. She looked at the man and said, “For us, she’s not just a dog. She’s a member of the family who will be treated as such.”
“People are family members. Dogs are just animals,” the evil man replied. “I buried my dead dogs in my backyard, at best. At worst, I threw them in the trash.” At that point, Sylvia was speechless at how heartless the man was.
However, her son stepped in. “You know, mister, I have a special ball that my dad gave me before he died. One day my mom, Jackie, and I were walking along the waterfront when my ball fell into the river,” Mike said.
“It was being swept away by the current, and I began to cry because it was the only thing I had left of my dad. My mom and I asked passers-by and fishermen to help me get my ball, yet they did not care despite telling them its value,” he added.
The man was quite shocked that a seven-year-old was standing up to him, but before he reacted, Mike continued: “I thought I would never see the ball again, but Jackie jumped into the water, swam, and brought me the ball.”
“And you say people are better than dogs? I don’t think so, mister. None of the people even stopped to help me, but Jackie did when I began to cry. He didn’t leave me in trouble then, and I won’t leave him now,” Mike said. “He loves me, and I love him.”
Everyone sitting nearby was fascinated by the little boy’s words, including Sylvia, who was proud of her son. Meanwhile, the man stood shocked and quietly lowered his head the whole ride.
What can we learn from this story?
Dogs are indeed a man’s best friend.
2. Be kind to everyone, especially when they are doing their best.