"Toby, Toby! Here boy!" called my dog, Alfie.
It was time for our walk. I ran in from the backyard where I had been digging up weeds. Alfie and I walked to the park. Peeing amongst some weeds along the way Alfie commented on the weather. I was distracted as I had been all week. Alfie seemed concerned and tried to draw me into conversation.
"Look at this fresh shit." he gave it an exploratory lick, "It's Trevors, he eats way to much of that tinned food"
Alfie brushed his nose against my leg. I felt his wet tongue lollop against me as he did so.
Alfie had refused to eat tinned food from early on. He had reasoned that if I would not eat 'that tinned stuff' why should he. The next day I made roast chicken, potatoes and pumpkin with gravy and brocolli. After I'd put some aside for next days lunch I gave Alfie the left-overs. He was furious.
"So, you won't eat the chickens bum or the brown goobey bits and you think it's OK for me?"
He ate it anyway but spent all night at my feet restlessly farting.
"But Alfie you are a dog" I said.
"And you are a just human, we're both sentient. Just because you have a couple of stubby opposable thumbs doesn't make you better than me"
"Well it does actually, I can cook"
"I can bite. Do you think cooking makes you morally superior? Just because you mastered the gas chamber I get to live on lips, tits and bums?"
"It's a gas cooker, Alfie"
"Don't patronise me. If you keep feeding me that crap, Toby, we'll both get to enjoy the gas chamber. Out of my ass."
The next day I grilled a couple of pork chops with apple sauce, green beans and spuds. I gave Alfie his own plate and that was the start of it.