The Greatest Dog


August 1, 2017 by imhavingadadday

I was 19 when I adopted my big boy.  Growing up with dogs put a soft spot in my heart from an early age, and when I moved away for college, getting a dog seemed like something I needed to do.  For whatever reason, I was set on getting a big male dog.  Something about being able to squeeze and lay all over something large, soft and furry is the greatest therapy that exists, and I really missed that from back home.  A friend of mine had come across this family that lived out in the country who had a lot of land and had turned a good portion of it into a home for both strays and rescues from the pound.  So, I decided to drive out there and take a look.

I get to the house and park in the circular, gravel driveway.  The house is completely isolated, with nothing but farm land surrounding it:  no neighbors within eyesight’s distance.  Looking out towards the back of the house, there are around twenty or so dogs quickly approaching to greet me, and behind them was a long row of individual enclosures all housing additional groups of dogs.

I step out of the car, and the dogs immediately surround me; all breeds, ages, and sizes, tails wagging and all trying to get a sniff.  A man, who looks eerily like the actor Anthony Hopkins, meets me out in the driveway, says hello and asks me if I am looking to adopt, and if so, am I looking for anything specific.  So I tell him, “I’m really trying to find a big boy dog.  Do you have any here?”.  He told me that he didn’t have any that were big yet, but he had a little lab mix with massive paws; a telltale sign of how big a dog will get later on.

We make our way through the group of dogs back towards the enclosure area.  There was an entry fence, and then a long dirt walkway which had tarp-covered enclosures on either side of it.  As we were walking through, every dog in there was yelping and pawing at the fence.  If they could speak they would have been screaming at me to play with them and take them home.  We get about half way down the walkway and the man says, “Well, there he is…”.  I look into the enclosure, and I see two small dogs playing with each other, three food bowls, and a dog house with a good size hole dug out underneath it.  Now I’m thinking, “He said there was a boy lab mix with giant paws….I don’t see any pupp….oooh wait a second…what’s under that dog house…”  And there he was.  The skinniest, boniest, most precious puppy I had ever seen.  I had to get nearly on the ground to get a good look at him, and while all the other dogs all around me were going nuts, this puppy just lay there, hiding under the dog house with his face between his front legs. He was three months old, 32 lbs of skin and bones, and had massive paws that haven’t grown a bit in over 9 years.

I named him “Tank,” and did he ever live up to his name.  Nearly 10 years later, Tank is 130 pounds and is the most unique and loving dog with incredibly peculiar habits. He refuses most human food, and wants nothing more than a shoulder rub and to be with his humans (and his best in-house dog friend, Bella).  Tank has become a wonderful companion/pillow/teddy bear for my now 16-month-old daughter, and is so incredibly passive, gentle, and kind to her.  I’d like to think that other families out there have been blessed with a friend like Tank, but I’m just not sure it’s possible.  He is a one of a kind, and we are the luckiest people alive to have found him.  Tank found himself at the adoption house after his previous owner left him abandoned in a cardboard box.  If the person who did that happens to come across this post, you’re heartless, but thank you.  And if the family that brought him in and allowed me to adopt him sees this post, you’re amazing, and thank you!!

2 thoughts on “The Greatest Dog

  1. I just started following your blog this morning and I like you already. Lots of Black Lab stories over st my blog too. Regards. 🐾

    Liked by 1 person

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