Friday Fictioneers: Silent Sentries

My entry for Friday Fictioneers,  September 18, 2015.


PHOTO PROMPT © David Stewart

Thank you Rochelle for your time and efforts each week to keep our creativity sparked!  And a special thanks to David Stewart for the featured photo offering.


Silent Sentries

Lowell knew the gate would be worth the challenge for the few extra dollars at the recyclers this week. He had seen it the last time he hit the alley looking for cans and other discards. He watched the house daily to note the occupants schedule and worked out when they were not home. Reveling in his own craftiness, he chuckled as he backed his truck to the gate, then set to work on the hinges. The gate loose he gave it a shove. It fell.

“Whoever heard of silent dogs?” He screamed, as they pinned him to the ground.


Words:  100


For some really great takes on the prompt just click the little blue frog.


32 thoughts on “Friday Fictioneers: Silent Sentries

  1. shoreacres says:

    Ha! We need some of those dogs to set on the thieves who are roaming our part of the country, stealing copper. On a completely different note, when I moved to Liberia, I was amazed to find that the basenji dogs there were barkless. They made noises from time to time, but mostly were silent. I found this interesting tidbit on a site devoted to the breed:

    “Yes, as a general rule the basenji is the “barkless” dog. Keep in mind that barking really has no function and is a part of the noises young dogs and pups make while developing. It is believed that most domestic dogs are trapped in adolescence because of human meddling in genetics which perpetuates the barking. The basenji originates from wild canids that do not bark. After all, silence and stealth are a key part of survival in the wild.”

    Exactly like your dogs — silent and stealthy!

    • Lynda says:

      Linda, Stealing copper is a problem everywhere nowadays. 😦 We had some ne’re-do-wells stealing whole air conditioning units around here a couple of years back. And that is a real crime to the elderly and others trying not to be steamed to death in the summer months around here. I remember a boyfriend of years gone by whose family had a Basenji. I had completely forgotten they don’t bark until you mentioned it here. Somewhere in the back of my mind I guess that factoid was stored away to be pulled out and used in my story this morning. 😀 What I did not know was the part about dog barking being a part of young dogs expressions. So glad you shared with me, thanks, Linda!

      • Irene Waters 19 Writer Memoirist says:

        I read somewhere that the dog is the only animal that has adjusted its behaviour in order to communicate with humans. According to this article dogs don’t bark to communicate amongst themselves. I know my dogs have totally different barks to tell me different things.
        I also knew someone with a Basenji and from memory it could climb walls and was really difficult to contain.

        • Lynda says:

          Hm, I might have to agree, Irene. My big dog only barks when he’s excited about breakfast/dinner prep, and when there is someone on the front porch or at the back gate… I wouldn’t want to be that someone if he got out! The little dog, on the other hand, barks likewise for the reasons above, and has a special bark when he wants to go play Rocket-ball. (The latter being the most irritating and incessant of barks!)

          • Irene Waters 19 Writer Memoirist says:

            You can’t help but love them despite the barks. Mine had a play bark, need to go to the toilet bark, I’m hungry bark, I want a pat bark, Time for a walk bark, Someone at the door bark and Bundy (our other dog) is doing something he shouldn’t bark. All of them apart from someone at the door were one bark but repeated twice more if we didn’t immediately jump to. Luckily then he would be patient.

    • Lynda says:

      Dear Rochelle,
      I am always happy when my endings surprise the reader.
      Thank you~!
      PS: Many years ago I had a boyfriend whose family owned a Basenji, I had forgotten that barkless factoid, but I guess it came to me for the story. Both you and my friend Linda (Shoreacres) have reminded me. 🙂

    • Lynda says:

      Sandra, silent dogs are not to be trusted. They are sneaky. As a child I got bitten by a German Shepard who sat there wagging his tail the whole time I petted him and then attacked viciously when I tried to walk away! All these silent dogs are coming back to memory this morning. They were obviously the seeds for my idea; eh?

      I’m glad you smiled!

  2. gahlearner says:

    Good story, great twist, clever dogs. BTW, dogs are not sneaky. When they bite without clear vocal warning (growl), that has likely been ‘trained’ out of them. Body language tells what’s to come though. This would be important for children to learn. The tail ‘wag’ is a sign of conflicted emotions, not always of happiness. The dog that bit you could also have perceived you as prey. Sorry for lecturing.

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