PART THE FIRST
I am, of
course, the best dog in the world, the whole world. Ask anyone. In fact, make
that the history of the world, the best dog in the history of the world.
Sit down, Rin Tin Tin! Take a walk, Lassie! Felipe, Dog of Destiny, is
here! Down through the ages, people will be asking themselves, Will
there ever be another dog like Felipe?
when the one called Bill says, “And we’re doing everything in our power
to see that there is NOT, right Felipe?”
“I need a
woman,” I growled.
need a woman, Felipe.”
I howled! I bayed at the moon!
called Bill said, “You tell ‘em, Felipe!”
And so I’m
doing just that! I’m going to tell ‘em! And I have a lot to tell, I
tell you. And this is my story, Felipe! Dog of Destiny!
* * *
going to be the title of this book, you see, “Felipe, Dog of Destiny,”
and everyone thought that was a very good title. It really captured my
story, the story of this book, the story of me, Dog of Destiny.
day the one called Bill said no, the publisher had called and said we
couldn’t call it “Felipe, Dog of Destiny.”
I howled, “How dare she! It’s gotta be called Felipe, Dog of Destiny!
It’s the perfect title! What does she know!”
“No, you won’t bite
sulked about that for a long time. I mean, Felipe, Dog of Destiny,
that’s me! That’s everything I stand for. It’s who I am. It’s the way
I am, and it’s the way I’ll always be. And I wasn’t happy for a long
time, my days seemed gray, I didn’t see any hope in the world, any
reason to go on living.
day the one called Bill said he talked to the publisher and she
said well, we could call it “Felipe, A Life.”
That’s terrible! ‘Felipe, A Life’ That’s nothing. That’s worse that
nothing! It reduces my whole, magnificent story to one stupid word!
Well, two words. But ‘A Life’? It’s …, it’s …” I didn’t know what to
do. I mean, here she was, ruining my book! My story! My life!
Oh, I was
And then I
got to thinking. Well, in a way, it is my LIFE. I mean, a life is what
it is. And I thought of all the little puppies, which someday may read
my life, and learn something about me, and my life. And maybe they will
learn from some of the many adventures I’ve had, some of the mistakes,
very few really, in my life. That they may grow up to be good dogs.
Like me. And I got to thinking, well, that does really sum it up, you
know. A life! It is my life, after all!
realized what a great title it really is, “Felipe, A Life,” it’s
says it all, really. And I realized how brilliant she is really, my
publisher, and that’s why she is of course such a great publisher for
me, the greatest. Well, of course, that’s the way I am, I always
have the best of everything.
everybody was very happy with the new title of my book, “Felipe, A Life,”
and everybody’s anxious to read it, of course. And all the little
puppies, who crowd around to hear the story of my life. That they might
learn a little bit, from my life, and that they learn the most important
is to always be a good dog. Like me.
‘em, Felipe!” said the one called Bill.
what I’m doing. I’m telling ‘em!
* * *
very little about that first day, of course. Well, that first day away
from my mother. Well, away from my mothers tit, that is. That big,
soft, warm, milky tit that I loved so much.
myself away from it. It was nowhere to be found. I was lost and I
didn’t know what to do. I was on a hard, rough surface. Nothing like
my old soft bed. And under something, something big and dirty and
greasy. I thought it was going to fall down on top of me and crush me
to death, that’s how big it was.
And I was
pretty soon, I heard some noises. Scraping sounds, and I saw some big
things moving around me, and stomping up and down, and I thought I would
surely be stomped to death, that’s how afraid I was.
big, ugly, evil face appeared and started screaming at me. And it said
something like, “Look! Under the car!”
another big, ugly, horrible face appeared and it too started screaming.
little yellow puppy!”
cried, I was so afraid.
was more big things stomping around and more screaming and then a big
horrible claw reached out and started moving toward me! I knew I was a
big thing had me in it’s clutches! I couldn’t move! It wrapped its big
ugly fingers around my poor little stomach and started pulling me,
against my will, into its grasp! I tried to pull back but it was so
strong, I cried out again!
it’s scared,” said one of the big things as I was lifted into the sky.
welled up in my big, beautiful, brown eyes.
I couldn’t understand what they were saying but it was something like,
“Oh, the poor little fella! Look, Mary!”
cute,” said the one called Mary, and I could tell they were going to
tear me limb from limb. I was shaking in my boots, I tell you!
one called Mary took hold of me and pressed me to her chest and started
to rub her big, red lips all over my poor, little face. They were
getting ready to eat me, I knew it.
we do with him?” said the short one.
Bill, he’ll know.”
didn’t know what the Bill one was, but I could tell from the way they
were talking that he must be like the master-torturer or something. I
cried out in terror!
Soon a big
tall one came walking up.
Bill, look what we found!” someone said.
he said. I could tell right away he was the boss and the most evil of
them all. I was doomed.
“Can we keep him?”
it!” He had a terrible scowl on his face.
what do we do with him, Bill?”
“I don’t care but get him out of here!” He was a mean one that one called Bill.
one called Mary, who was holding me, looked up at the one called Bill.
“But he’s lost, Bill.”
called Bill shook his head and muttered, “Oh, brother!” He looked down
at me, a big mean frown on his face. “Well, Pepe, come ’ere!”
one came running up.
hell,” said the mean one called Bill and reached into his pocket, “run
down to the store and get some Puppy Chow. Right now.”
didn’t know what a Puppy Chow was but I thought about it a minute and
decided it must be the horrid, dreaded machine that grinds up poor,
little puppies and makes “chow” out of them. They were going to grind
me up and eat me!
“OK!” they all shouted as Pepe went running down the street. They were a
bring him in, for crying out loud!” said the one called Bill and the one
called Mary and the others gleefully followed.
opened up a door on the street and they all went inside, carrying me to
It was the
biggest place I had ever seen and hard floors and steps and doors and
such and they took me upstairs to the torture chamber.
called Mary put me down on the hard floor and I thought this is my only
chance to escape. I must flee! I tried to run but my poor, little legs
were shaking so badly I couldn’t move an inch. Soon they all gathered
around me and started poking me and laughing at me and saying things
like, “Come on, little fella, it’s OK!” and such. All except the one
called Bill, of course. He went off someplace to prepare for the
terrible slaughter that was to come.
short one came running up the stairs with a big bag in his hands. “I
got it!” he shouted with barely concealed glee.
one now said, “You got the Puppy Chow! Oh boy!” and three or four of
them went running after the one called Bill.
called Mary said, with a big smile, “They’ve gone to prepare the Puppy
I knew it
must be a terrible big machine to need so much preparing and getting
ready to chow me to death.
comes!” I shuddered and closed my big, beautiful, brown eyes tight. I couldn’t look!
I heard a
thud and thought there it is, the Puppy Chow machine! Then they started
laughing and pushing me forward. “Come on, little fella, it’s Puppy
looked up. They had put the horrible machine in something that looked
like a giant, yellow cistern. To catch the blood, I guess. I was being
forced to come closer.
smelled something. Something different that I’d ever smelled before.
Something strangely attractive. And I slowly approached the cistern. I
looked over the edge. It wasn’t a machine at all. It was some sort of
brown stuff, and it smelled wonderful. I put my whole little head into
when my life changed.
realized I was not going to die and be ground up, and all these big ones
weren’t going to eat me, after all! I was going to live! I opened my
adorable little mouth and shouted with delight and some of the Puppy
Chow even got inside my mouth and all around my tongue and my little
white gleaming teeth and I started to laugh and bite down on all the
brown stuff and I was suddenly the happiest, luckiest dog in the whole
world! And I ate and ate and ate! Until my poor little belly felt like
it was going to explode.
they all started laughing and poking me again, but not in a bad way,
like before, but kinda gentle and playing, you know?
started to run all around and the short one started to chase me and I
ran and ran. And soon the one called Mary started chasing me too and
they all were laughing and calling out at me and they tried to catch me.
and even the mean awful one called Bill had a little grin on his face.
never catch me! I’m the fastest puppy in the world!” I shouted and went
running off, showing them I was the fasted little puppy in the whole
horrible thing happened. I ran smack into something big and hard and
said the short one, “he’s splattered himself all over the wall!”. They
all came running up and gathered me up in their arms.
little fella. Slow down!” I was seeing stars, I tell you.
shouted and my little feet started to paw the air, “I’m still the fasted
puppy in the whole world!” and they put me down and I started running
goes! Get ‘im!” and they all ran after me and I ran and ran.
playing!” said the skinny one and everyone was laughing.
played and played and played. And I ran all over the place. And then I
ate some more Puppy Chow and then I ran some more.
Pretty soon I had to go to the bathroom, and they took me upstairs and showed
me where to go to the bathroom and from then on I always go to the
bathroom where I’m supposed to go to the bathroom.
always remember that day so well, when we played and played and played
and it was the happiest day of my life.
* * *
that kind of day. We played and I ran and ran and ate and played some
more and then I had to take a little nap, I was so sleepy. So they
brought me a big, soft blanket and put it down for me and I slept like
the dead, I tell you.
And then a
little later, they were all walking around and I was watching them and
then somebody said something like, “See ya tomorrow, little fella!” and
I thought they were saying come on let’s play some more. Then they all
started moving towards the stairs and somebody said, “Now you be a good
boy” and they all walked down the stairs and out the door and I heard it
clang real loud behind them and I looked in horror to the bottom of the
stairs and suddenly there was nobody there.
abandoned again. Twice in one day. And I was so afraid.
to be about a hundred miles down those long steep stairs to the door and
I couldn’t believe they had just gone off like that and left me here all
alone and I reached my little paw out into the air over the first step
and I couldn’t touch the bottom and I gathered up all my strength and
courage and took a giant leap and landed down about a mile and hit real
hard on the floor and almost passed out from the big drop.
down again. It was still about a hundred miles down to the next one and
so I tried again and again I fell all the way down to the next step.
Then I got
up again and looked down again and I suddenly realized it was still
about a hundred miles to the next step and I was never going to make it
and it would take me a hundred years just to get down to the bottom and
I was surely going to die on the way down.
I sat back
and stared off into the great abyss which was the stairwell and my big,
beautiful, brown eyes filled with tears. I realized there was no hope
and I found myself lost in the world with no one to love me, and for the
second time in one day, I was the saddest little puppy in the whole
and cried and cried, all night long and it was the longest night of my
I guess in
my sleep that night I must have struggled back up those big, hard stairs
and somehow made it back to my little blanket, because much later I
heard a noise and opened one of my big, beautiful, brown eyes and looked
up. I saw that it was very bright and the sun was coming in the windows
and there was some sounds of stomping and laughing that was coming from
the stairs and I lifted my little head.
is!” said somebody.
little fella! How you doing?” said another one.
believe my ears! They had come back! And then they all came up and
started patting me on the head and laughing and poking me and all at
once I jumped up and shouted “You’ll never catch me!” and I went running
all over the place and suddenly I was the happiest, luckiest, bravest,
fastest, strongest, handsomest puppy in the whole world.
Puppy Chow!” someone called.
as loud as I could, “Yes! Get the Puppy Chow!”
That day I
ate lots of Puppy Chow and ran and ran and ran and everybody said I was
the fastest puppy in the whole world. I could have told ‘em, of
course. And I was a good boy all day long and always went to the
bathroom where I was supposed to go to the bathroom.
It was a
wonderful day. But then, they all started to go down the big, scary
steps again and said that stuff about “see you tomorrow, fella” and
stuff. I couldn’t believe it.
I jumped right down that big scary step right after them. And I made it
almost all the way down, when I just got too scared and decided to come
cried that night, but this time a little bit less. And when they came
in the morning I was so happy, happier than I had ever been in my life!
night I cried a little bit less, and pretty soon I would watch them go,
sad, of course, to see them go but so happy in the morning, happier each
day, really, when they came back. And I learned to be a good dog.
I ate up all my food and I drank lots of fresh water every day. And I
always went to the bathroom where I was supposed to go to the bathroom.
* * *
PART THE FIRST
...PART THE SECOND