“You got a name?” The dog wasn’t used to finding anyone else by the lake. The moon still hung in the sky, the sun spreading across the horizon offering promise of a warm day. He usually headed to the lake before breakfast. It gave him space to think.
“The man calls me Shimmer.” The other dog replied.
The dog didn’t have a man. Or a woman or a child. Or anyone. He had himself. The day had promise. What to do with Shimmer. He needed to think. As a puppy, he used to play with other dogs. Most were his brothers and sisters, but they went away with various people who came to the lab. He was the only one who stayed with the man.
“You got a name?” Shimmer’s question hung in the air. He might have had a name once, but for the life of him, he couldn’t remember it. He was more the kind of dog who remembered things by experience. The smell of a place, the sounds and sights of the world. It is a beautiful world.
“You must be known as something?” Shimmer was trying. He gave him that.
“I just helped with his experiments. I was crucial. I don’t think he had any time to think of names for his dog. He was a very clever man.” The dog was thinking of the old days when he became famous. It all seemed so long ago. He watched the fish dancing in the clear water.
“You had breakfast yet? Want to grab something?” Shimmer glanced across at the other dog. He hoped they could become friends.
“Oh my God, I am starving!” The dog barked in excitement. He felt the saliva building in his mouth at the thought of a juicy steak and eggs from the diner.
The dogs ran together back through the woods and onto the road that led back into town. They slowed to a fast walk as their lungs puffed with exertion.
“I’ve just remembered something.” The dog was thinking back again. Trying to get his mind off the delicious food that was waiting for him just two miles down the road. “I was fairly famous once. Not that I’m boasting or anything.”
“Wow. Cool. Should I have heard of your work?”
“It was a long time ago. Might be before your time…”
“I helped out with experiments. I was Pavlov’s dog. Back then.”
“Sorry. Doesn’t ring a bell. Must be before my time.”
“Probably. Anyhow, let’s eat!”
And the dogs ran on down the road towards the bright lights of the diner ahead of them.