The pug

One of my housemates has a pug. The biggest, fattest pug I’ve ever seen, and possibly ever. This animal is endearing in the way that, immediately upon looking at him, one can’t help but feel sympathy for his plight, and be simultaneously amused by the sheer absurdity of his existence. His proportions are all wrong, his movements are labored and awkward, and he shows excitement by snorting wildly. And yet, in that snort, you can sense a pure and simple happiness that someone is there to pet or entertain him. He seems to have no agenda of his own but follow around people and observe their doings, and with his bulging eyes makes a silent, persistent case to be petted.

And the corollary is, I’ve never seen a creature frown so distinctly as he does when he is watching you go out the front door, knowing you are leaving him alone to hours of destitute boredom, belly laid against the floor in an attempt to stay cool, too-short legs splayed in every odd direction, snoring through his inadequate breathing passageways. Because as far as I can tell, this is precisely all he does when no one is around (and often even when they are around).

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