by C.S. Frye
"Daisy." "Daisy?!" yelled Josh. "Where is that dog?"
He ran to the kitchen. Her food had not been touched. She usually came home starved to death. Daisy worked at a cancer research center, she 'sniffed out'cancer from samples.
Josh ran upstairs. He found Daisy on a blanket in his closet.
"What's the matter, girl?" he asked running his hand over her fur. "Come on, girl," Josh coaxed. Daisy struggled to her feet and wagged her tail.
She followed him into the kitchen. "Here girl," said Josh. He handed her a morsel of food but she turned her head and waddled to the front door.
"Good Girl," said Josh as he opened the door.
Daisy ran down the porch steps into the yard. She nibbled some grass.
"Daisy, don't eat that grass!" yelled Josh. "Come and eat your food."
Daisy kept nibbling. Later that day she got sick.
"I knew it," said Josh. "I knew you'd get sick after eating grass," he scolded.
Josh grabbed some paper towels and hurried back to the hallway. "I warned you about eating grass," he quarreled as his dad walked by.
"What happened" asked his dad.
Josh glanced up, "Daisy threw-up her lunch."
Josh's dad walked into the kitchen and poured a cup of coffee. "She probably ate too much," he said.
Josh threw the wet towels in the trash. "That's just it, she didn't eat her food, she ate grass. I think something is wrong."
Josh's dad set his coffee cup on the bar. "Keep an eye on her today. If she isn't feeling any better by this evening, I'll call a veterinarian.
That evening Daisy was still sick. They took her to the animal hospital. Daisy shivered on Josh's lap. The smell of disinfectant made her sneeze. Dr. Todd, examined Daisy for a long time. When he returned, he shook his head. Josh felt a pain in his stomach. Then the doctor suggested that she stay at the hospital for some tests. Josh left the hospital with a long face.
Josh went to the hospital everyday to see Daisy. He hated leaving his dog alone with strangers. But worst of all, he hated not knowing how to help her.
Josh wouldn't eat because Daisy couldn't. When he slept, he had nightmares. He didn't want to think about what might happen at the hospital. Every night, he said a prayer for his dog.
Daisy depended on him. He had to do something to help her. She needed him... and he needed her.
Saturday morning. Josh got dressed early. Daisy had been in the hospital a while week. He told his dad, "Daisy's coming home today!"
The trip to the hospital reminded Josh of the day his Grandmother had come home sick. Nobody talked. Josh licked his lips and said a prayer, a silent one.
The air in the hospital room tasted cold. When the doctor entered Josh's dad smiled and stood. Josh took a deep breath.
The doctor's words sounded far away. When the doctor said cancer. Then Joshes eyes flew open.
He heard someone cry-out. He slumped into a chair before realizing it was him. The doctor continued to talk. Nothing he said made any sense; chemotherapy, radiation, putting her down. "Putting her down!" Josh jumped from his chair.
"OH! NO!" yelled Josh. "Nobody's putting my Daisy down!" We didn't put grandmother down when she had cancer. "People don't get put down because they're sick." Josh dropped into the chair.
Then he jumped up again. "Dad, Daisy's going home with me today. I'll take care of her just like we took care of grandmother."
There was a short silence as Josh's dad and the doctor looked at one another. Josh's dad put his arm around Joshes shoulders and winked.
"You heard the boy. Were taking her home."
Dr. Todd smiled. "I'll have a nurse bring her out."
"She'll be alright, Dad" said Josh. "You'll see. I'll take real good care of her, just like she helped those patients at the research center She'll be working again before you know it."
"I know she will son. But you'll have to do all the doctoring and it won't be easy to make her take medicine."
Josh looked up at his dad. "Dad, I don't care what I have to do, I'll do it, because I love her.
The days that followed were long. Josh gave Daisy her medicine each day. He read the ingredients on food before he bought it. "Daisy gets the best."
Day by day, Josh watched Daisy improve.
After several weeks, Daisy's cancer went into remission. A few months later her doctor called. Daisy was cancer free!
A few days later, the cancer research center called. They needed Daisy to come back to work. Now Daisy continued doing what she loved best. Josh beamed.
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