Contest #5 shortlist ⭐️

The Big Race

Submitted for Contest #5 in response to: Write a story about someone striving for a "comeback."... view prompt

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Submitted on 09/01/2019

Categories: General


The iditarod would be in two months and Finn was forty pounds underweight and considered too small for the competition. Finn, a half chihuahua, half corgi, was not the usual candidate for dog racing and besides, dog racing became illegal in Florida in the last election, but Finn and his owner really enjoyed dog racing and Alaska is the only state where it’s still legal. Finn had always dreamed of racing with the big dogs, being one of the two dogs at the head of the team, leading his team. He saw the dogs fight each other for the privilege of being chosen by their owner. Imagine a gym class where you humans play baseball outside. Each team has a captain and the best players are picked first. Nobody wants to be the last one picked by the captain. Well, it’s the same thing with dog sledding. I would see those huskies bite each other in order to convince their owner that they were the strongest, toughest, and fastest dog for the team. So, I had my master send off for the registration forms for the Iditarod.

Perhaps the reader doesn’t know what the Iditarod is. One time, in American history, there was a sick girl in Alaska. A doctor came with the serum to fix the young woman’s problem but the young woman was in Western Alaska, not Eastern Alaska. So, the young men decided to have a friendly dog race to see who could get the serum through to the young woman first and that was the beginning of the Iditarod. But there are regulations. Usually only huskies race in the iditarod since they’re bred to like the snow. Us chihuahuas are usually bred to like the heat. But not me. Me, the colder and more icy it is outside, the happier I am. Then, I look at my master with those “poor me” eyes, you know the kind, and, on good days, he takes me to the human round race track and he, while giggling, gets out the red rider and I get to pull him through the snow/ice. These are the happiest days of my life.

It has gotten harder as I’ve gotten older, though. I started experiencing a sharp pain in my back right leg. We then went to the vet. I don’t like going to the vet. The vet stuck a needle in me and took out blood. He then stuck a piece of metal up my butt to collect some feces. He then stretched my back legs which really hurt. But then, he gave me a shot and told my master to give me a really yummy treat in the morning. But the yummy treat makes me tired, so we can’t go back to the running track with the red rider to practice and I miss the red rider.  

My master would also sometimes take me to the dog park. The dog park is one of my favorite places, too. See, this is where I can look for team members for the Iditarod and who knows, maybe a nice bitch to settle down with. One time, I found a young bitch and I had mounted her, which both of us were enjoying and then the other dog’s master took her away. I wish the owner would have waited until we were through. But, I did find two young strong dogs which I fought with who I want to be on my dog racing team: a Yorkee and a Pomeranian.  

At home, my parent keeps putting me in front of the TV, so I can watch Dog TV. Sometimes I like that channel but sometimes it’s really boring. I can’t smell the dogs on Dog TV. And the music is pretty boring too. But my master says it calms me down while he’s away.  

While my master was watching the news on TV, I heard it. The Iditarod would be starting in a few weeks. I wagged my tail as hard as I could and I happily barked at my master and I tried to lead him to the red wagon. My master asked if I needed to go outside to do my business but I brought him to the red wagon. He looked at me with soft eyes of pity.

“Sorry, buddy. The vet said to not put any more strenuous activities on your legs. I guess we’re both getting older, aye Chap?”

Older? What are you talking about, silly? If I’m getting older then I want the Iditarod to be on my bucket list. I just want to race in the Iditarod. When I get that big team of small dogs there’s nothing that’ll stop us. Older, are you kidding me? If I’m an older dog, then I want to learn this new trick. Come on, let’s go to the racetrack.

After rolling his eyes a few times, my master did finally take me to the race track, but he brought along a small doll. My master said to try racing with the doll on the racetrack before pulling him. That would be too easy. Come on. I’ll show him. So, my master put this small cotton doll on the red rider and I went off in the snow and I was half way around the track when suddenly I couldn’t run anymore. My muscles gave out. I felt cold, weak, and scared. I whimpered for my master to come and he came. He put me under his coat by his body which was warm, but I still shivered. Unfortunately, I knew my master was right. I would never race in the Iditarod. Two weeks later, my master went to work and left the TV on. Not dog TV, just TV. And I saw it. I saw the big, strong, young huskies pulling their master and I put my tail between my legs. It just wasn’t fair. It wasn’t fair. I would never race in the Iditarod. 

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