I watched them come up the hillside. There were four of them.
They seemed very happy and the two people were laughing and chattering. The dogs had big grins on their faces.
I started walking towards them but the woman with the black dog stopped. The man with the German Shepherd said: “Don’t worry, he’s not going to come near.”
And they continued up the hillside right to the top by the bull. When they came down, I started to follow them, but I kept my distance.
They looked a happy pack. I thought they might like another member. I had been on the streets for months and it was cold and wet in winter.
I had to fight all the other street dogs for food. My ear was hanging off, my coat was matted and huge clumps of fur were missing. I had lots of scabs and sores. The fur all round my throat was pink from blood during some of the fights.
The village dogs didn’t want me in their packs because I was too big. No-one wanted me because I was too big.
They went happily over the stream but before I could follow them into the village the goatherder came down the bed of the stream with his goats and sheep. I ran away again because he often threw stones at me.
A couple of days later I was starving. I thought I would see if I could find any food in the village. And I met them again, but without the two dogs.
I followed them cautiously down the street and then the woman stopped and spoke nicely to me. I went to sniff her and she smelt warm and friendly, and of the other dogs. The man came near, but I backed off because men often hit me.
“This must be the dog that Barbara told us about,” said the woman. “You know, the one she said looked like a big Alsatian.”
“That was back in October,” said the man. (It was January now.)
“Yes, that’s right, but don’t you think he looks like he has been on the streets since then?” she added.
“We really can’t have another dog,” he said in a not-very-convinced voice.
And then a horrid big truck came past and I cowered into the fence. The woman was very upset and tried to comfort me, and then they left. So I followed them down the street, and out onto the old railway line.
It was nice and quiet, so I thought I would keep following them and then perhaps they would go home and take me with them. But then a strange man came up waving his arms around and shouting loudly so I got frightened and ran away.