by Bindy Crown
You can name us. . . . . . .
On a breezy, warm, sunny morning Pookie, Chloe, and Buster, three adventurous dogs, are sitting on the edge of a pier fishing. They are known around town as “The Bark Squad.” They have fished from this pier often during the warm weather. In fact, they have made many friends while playing and fishing along the pier throughout the spring and summer seasons.
Pookie has been described as the leader of The Bark Squad. She is a sassy Shih Tzu/Bichon mix, with a sparkling white coat, fluffy tail and big round dark eyes. Pookie tends to get dirty everyday because she enjoys digging up the backyard any chance she gets.
Chloe, the most energetic dog of the Squad, is a Yorkie/Maltese mix. Her coat is a soft white & tan color. She has a long, skinny tail and short, yet floppy ears. She’s an athlete when it comes to playing catch with the ball. Most would say she got her skills directly from a football playbook.
Buster is the most quietest and laid back of the three dogs. He is also a Yorkie/Maltese mix, yet he looks very different from Chloe. He has a long light brown shiny coat, along with a little stubby tail that wiggles when he walks. He enjoys laying on the deck and catching sun rays on a sunny day. And he is also quick to run across the yard if something sparks his interest.
Chloe suddenly feels a slight tug on her fishing line. Slowly she starts reeling her line in. Ripples begin to form on the surface of the water. A fish peeks its head out from the water.
“Good Morning Chloe! What a great morning. What’s going on today?”
“Well, Mr. Bubbles, we plan on spending the morning fishing. At lunchtime, we have a cookout planned for all of our friends and family to enjoy. We’ve got all the hot dogs and hamburgers you could possibly eat,” Chloe shouts out while rubbing her belly. “Afterwards, we plan on swimming in the lake with some relay races across the sandy beach.”
“Sounds like a fun-filled day. Hope everyone has a splendid time. The weather is supposed to be beautiful all day. I’ll stop by later for some of those yummy hot dogs. I can’t wait.”
The day was filled with fun and laughter. Friends and family came by to enjoy the food. And many stayed to splash around in the lake.
Pookie, leader of The Bark Squad, is swimming around in the lake and she hears a faint cry. She swims closer to the cries and finds a tiny baby blue bird, barely covered with its feathers, standing in the tall grass, gently crying to herself.
Pookie jumps out of the lake, running closer to the cries, “Oh my goodness! What’s wrong little birdy?” Pookie asks feeling concern for the little bird. “Why are you crying? Are you okay? What can I do to help you?”
The little bird explains that she was learning to fly around the park with her family when suddenly a gust of wind tossed her off course and now she’s separated from her family. She’s afraid to venture off by herself to find her family and doesn’t know what to do.
Pookie reaches out her paw and introduces herself. She asks the little bird what her name is.
The little bird reaches her wing out to shake Pookie’s paw, “Hi. My name is Daffy. Thank you for offering to help. There’s so much going on out here, I’m not quite sure where I should begin looking for my family.”
They begin their journey, walking around the lake, crossing the bridge and heading into town. The town is crowded with people. The Bark Squad and Daffy have to navigate around all the people who are also enjoying the nice warm weather.
They came across several kids playing hopscotch on the sidewalk. Buster, the only boy in The Bark Squad, asks the kids if they’ve seen Daffy’s family flying around town. One of the little girls replies, “We’ve seen many birds flying around, but I don’t know if they were Daffy’s family or not. We’ve been playing hopscotch. Do you want to play?”
“Great,” giggles the little girl as she goes back to her hopscotch game with her friends.
The man quickly stops playing his tunes. He glances at Chloe, gives her a sweeping pet on the back and tells her he hasn’t noticed any birds looking for a lost one, however there’s a park across the street where many birds live and fly around.
The Bark Squad and Daffy carefully cross the street together and head over to the edge of the park. The park was filled with so much activity. There were people flying kites, blowing bubbles, walking dogs, and others laying on blankets enjoying a sunny afternoon. There were so many trees in the park that Pookie thought finding Daffy’s family might be harder than what she expected.
The Bark Squad gathered together to come up with their game plan. Daffy begins to worry that she may never see her family again.
Suddenly, Chloe comes up with an idea. “I know what we can do. We’ll begin barking and howling. Daffy, you sing and whistle. We’ll call for Daffy’s family that way. They’ll hear us and come find Daffy.”
Daffy perks up a bit, “That’s a wonderful idea. Let’s do it.”
The Bark Squad began with their signature bark and howl routine. “Bark, bark, bark, howl. Bark, bark, bark, howl.” While Daffy sang, whistled, and chirped as loud as she could as they pranced around the crowded park. Daffy started to whistle the jazzy tune they heard earlier being played by the elderly man sitting on the park bench. While The Bark Squad continued on with their barking routine.
Several bird families took interest in the commotion, but unfortunately they weren’t Daffy’s family. Just as they were getting ready to head to a different part of the park Daffy hears from a distance, “Daffy, honey, is that you? It’s your Momma. I’m over here.” Daffy looked behind her and her Momma bird came swooping down next to her. Momma bird grabbed Daffy tightly and gave her a big hug.
“Honey! We’ve been looking for you all afternoon. What happened? Oh! Who are your friends?” she chirps with a giant tear running down her beak.
“A huge breeze blew me off track. I landed in the grassy field over by the lake. I was crying and scared. That’s where I met Pookie, Chloe and Buster. They are The Bark Squad and have been with me all afternoon, helping me look for you.” Daffy explains to her Momma.
Momma bird expresses her gratitude to The Bark Squad, “Thank you so much for taking care of my little girl and getting her back to me safely. We were lucky that you heard Daffy’s cries. We are so grateful.”
Daffy and her Momma flap their wings and flew away together back to the family nest. Both looking back at The Bark Squad to thank them one more time for all of their help.
“We did an awesome thing today. We helped a little lost bird find its way back to her family. I’m so proud of The Bark Squad. Hooray to all of us.” Pookie spoke with pride.
“It feels great to help,” Chloe exclaimed.
“Great job everyone,” shouted Buster.
The Bark Squad headed back to the fishing pier, jumping and galloping along the sidewalk. There was a few hours of daylight left and they wanted to take full advantage of it.
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