Dog Brings Home Human Leg

Milojica is a black flat-coated retriever. Last summer I trained him for a month to find and retrieve wallets. No luck. Now he brings home a leg.

I tossed the leg in the freezer in the garage and posted an item on craigslist. Nobody wanted the limb, not even, evidently, its owner.

It’s a male leg, or that of an exceptionally hirsute, muscular female. No polish on the nails. A little lint between the toes. (The leg has a foot on one end.)

There is a small tattoo above the ankle – two Chinese characters, taken together meaning “Huizhou tamale.”

Next day I took the leg out of the freezer, let it thaw, and had Milojica sniff it once or twice. Between his nose and bringing the thing home in his mouth in the first place, he had to have its scent firmly embossed upon his canine brain. I led him out the front gate, aimed him down the road, and said “Fetch.” Slapped his rump to get him going. He sped away, down the street and into the woods.

“Will he bring back the other one?” said my daughter Jasna.

I shrugged. While we waited, I went inside and posted a picture of the leg on Facebook. Friends registered many Likes (trolling spam) but no Wants. Well, one want, but for totally inappropriate reasons.

On Twitter I posted “What to do with my leg?” As I have no followers, no one responded.

Milojica returned empty-mouthed. He trotted into the open garage and sat down whining in front of the freezer.

“That is not your personal chew toy,” I said.

“Aw, Dad, please?” said my son Javor.

“We don’t let the cats toy with the birds they catch,” I said. “This is the same thing.”

“Well, can we play with it?” Jasna said.

“No you cannot,” I said. “Stay out of the freezer or I’ll give you a good thrashing.”

In the dark of night, though, with Milojica at my side, I took out the leg myself, and warmed it with a hair dryer. I can’t say why, but I had sentimental feelings for it. Perhaps it reminded me of my father’s leg. Or poor Yorick’s.

The leg went all the way up, but stopped just before it would have got, you know, weird.

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