Walking with the more-than-human: BODIES IN THE MAKING

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Girl dog body & woman human body

Two human bodies briskly walk towards us. She pokes him with her elbow and he immediately turns towards her. While grinning, she is looking in Lobito’s direction. She grabs his arm and their pace becomes slower. As we meet on the sidewalk she stops. While bending down to pet Lobito she exclaims in a high-pitched voice, “Oh, isn’t she cute! What an adorable tiny puppy!”

 

Little dog body & protecting human body

From behind, I hear a car approaching. While tightening the lead, my body tenses, and I turn my head. As the car slows down, almost stopping, the passenger takes a second, longer look at us. As they drive past, out of the car window I hear, “Did you see that little dog?”

 

Nondog body & real human body

It’s a busy road. It’s a loud road. It’s a smelly road. It’s a hot road.

Lots of human bodies are walking and talking, eating and drinking, waiting and perusing.

They notice, they look, they stare, they pass, they sneer.

“That’s a rat, not a real dog.”

 

Baby dog body & parent human body

Turning the street corner, we are greeted by a woman’s loud voice, “Oh, there you are. Look at you.” She moves quickly towards Lobito, but not quick enough. Pulling on the lead, Lobito moves away. As she stretches her arm down to pet him, he pulls back again. 

Now standing, she looks down towards him, while saying, “Isn’t she just the cutest little thing you have ever seen?” She turns and says something to her friend. She tries a third time to pet Lobito. Again, he moves away, crouching his head down to the ground. Looking at Lobito, she tells him in an animated voice, “You, little thing are just the most adorable little dog I’ve ever seen. Yes… you… are….you are very cute. Your mum must be proud.” Immediately my body tenses while asking myself, “Mum?” “No, she didn’t just call me that” “She’s got to be kidding” “He is a dog, not a baby!”

I then realize the woman is asking if my dog is a girl. Before I can respond, she figures it out and says, “Oh….it’s a boy.