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“Hey man, wanna go to work with me today?”
Tank’s ears perked up (one ear looks like a lab ear and the other like a pitbull ear). He is spry for a dog of about nine. It was a chilly day and he got the pitbull fur so on went his old man sweater.
When you bring your dog to work pic.twitter.com/nI2VpLj1zs
— MadoffInvestment (@BLMInvestment) October 27, 2017
I’ll never forget the day I met Tank. My woman and I had just started dating and she called me up saying she found two dogs on the side of the road. He was covered in fleas and ticks, was underweight by at least 10 pounds, and his teeth were ground down in the front. Someone had hit him at some point which had caused one tooth to fill with blood. Due to him being a big black dog, it was my mission to highlight that a rescue dog that had overcome a lifetime of adversity could be a model dogizen and hopefully do his part in erasing stereotypes while healing himself. So we got him therapy certified last year and he frequents nursing homes around the holidays wearing reindeer antlers.
I’m fortunate to have a job that allows us to bring service or therapy dogs, and I brought in the paperwork on the off chance someone cared (spoilers: no one did). Several of the floors in my building are related to special education, therapy and disabilities, so this was in his wheelhouse. The students could always use a stress break, and what better way to do so than to pet a friendly dog?
As soon as I got there, Tank was a celebrity. Tank is a lady’s man and my coworker Brandy, who is about my age, immediately got a sloppy wet kiss. We work across the way from each other and he kept sneaking out across the office to get more pets and belly rubs. It took me about 30 minutes to make it down two floors to the mailbox because everyone wanted to stop and pet him. He had a crowd of about five ladies (did I mention he loves women?) crowding around him, lying on his back to receive belly rubs.
The only thing Tank loves more than women are children, and on this particular day, many children had come to Trick-or-Treat in our building. We forgot to get candy but for many of the children, petting Tank was just as good.
“Mommy there’s a puppy!” as Wonder Woman, the Flash and a princess rushed over to pet him. Some kids were afraid, but you could tell they wanted to pet him. Even when they pull on his ears or grab his tail, he practices the patience of a Buddhist monk. Watching the mothers freeze when their child throw their arm around Tank, only to see him slurp their kids across the face, is one of my favorite things.
The rest of the day was largely uneventful. He chilled on the floor, getting up periodically to sneak across the hall to get more love from Brandy. Once it was about closing time, I walked him up to Mrs. Madoff’s place of employment and he got more pets. I ran into the dean of her school and he sent me on my way to some “overstressed students” to get more hugs and barbecue chips.
Tank loves people of all kinds. On vacation at the OBX this summer, while waiting in line for ice cream, a special needs boy came over to him and gave him a big hug. The boy’s mom came over to me and thanked me, as the boy had a dog at home that he missed. Stuff like that always puts a tear in my eye. He showed up into my life like Bagger Vance and his journey of healing through love is still being told. When we go on visits, he is usually sporting a bowtie, thanks to our own Jennifer Crowley who wanted to make sure he always looks his best. It’s great to have a job where they encourage having dogs because honestly, who is ever sad to see a dog at work?.