Treat me kindly,
my beloved friend, for no heart in all the world is
more grateful for kindness than the loving heart of me.
Do not break my spirit with a stick, for though I might lick your hand
between blows, your patience and understanding will more quickly teach me things
you would have me learn.
Speak to me often, for your voice is the world's sweetest music, as you
must know by the fierce wagging of my tail when your footstep falls upon my
Please take me inside when it is cold and wet, for I am a domesticated
animal, no longer accustomed to bitter elements. I ask no greater glory than
the privilege of sitting at your feet beside the hearth.
Keep my pan filled with fresh water, for I cannot tell you when I suffer
Feed me clean food that I may stay well, to romp and play and do your
bidding, to walk by your side, and stand ready, willing and able to protect you with
my life, should your life be in danger.
And, my friend, when I am very old, and I no longer enjoy good health,
hearing and sight, do not make heroic efforts to keep me going. I am not having
any fun. Please see that my trusting life is taken gently. I shall leave this earth
knowing with the last breath I draw that my fate was always safest in your hands.