Here's what's on page 25 of What the Dog Ate - a self-contained scene with the main character, Maggie Baxter, and her chocolate Lab, Kona. (This scene takes place after Kona's vet extracts a pair of tiny thong panties that aren't Maggie's from Kona's gut. When she confronts her husband, Dave, about it, he leaves her for the other woman:
The rest of the week, Maggie went to work on autopilot. She was committed to fulfilling her notice period, but she put in half her usual hours. What could they do; fire her? Mornings, she came in late, wearing the same khakis she dragged from the heap she’d left them in the day before. At lunch time, her staff offered to take her out, but one day she used Kona’s appointment to have his stitches taken out as an excuse not to go. The other days, she’d claim a doctor’s or dentist’s appointment. She’d drive to the beach and stare out her closed car window. She didn’t want to feel the sand under her feet; be rejuvenated by the fresh sea air. She just wanted to be away from the office, away from everyone. At five each night, she headed home while her staff looked up from their desks like prisoners watching a fellow inmate being paroled.
The few minutes when she first got home were the highlight of each day. Kona, happy to see her and even happier to be free of his cone, would wiggle his way to her and cover her with kisses. After she fed him and changed into sweats, they’d squeeze onto the sofa together. She channel surfed; tennis matches, disasters, talking heads, people selling diet aids, car chases—it all passed by in a disjointed blur.
One evening she lay there, marveling at the fact that while her world imploded in slow-mo, someone somewhere was engrossed in a rerun of The Golden Girls. She studied Kona, sitting, staring at the door. He leaned against the sofa, near where her bare foot dangled off the edge. His nostrils flared as he let out a loud exhalation.
Wonder if he’s thinking about Daddy; wondering why he doesn’t come home.
Kona lifted his back leg and began to lick his crotch.
“Kona, stop it. You kiss your mother with that mouth?” Well, maybe that’s not what he’s thinking. But really, where is Daddy? I can’t believe he didn’t even fight for Kona. I mean, he wouldn’t have a leg to stand on; Kona was my birthday present. Still, I thought he loved Kona. But then, I thought he loved me, too. What the hell do I know? She snorted in disgust and changed the channel. (Win the grand prize! The 13th secret word in the 25-word sentence is: writers)
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