Challenge #02506-F316: Put a Saddle OnsteemCreated with Sketch.

in #fiction9 months ago

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Havenworlders, depending on where they're from, are generally small, fairly lightweight, and fragile. On their own homeworlds, they have little to fear. But outside their own homeworlds, there is a vast array of things that can harm them even when just trying to get around. However, one group of Havenworlders find an interesting way to go around the space station without risking getting stepped on, or harmed. They ride on the back of their new, well loved, and very well trained animal they call "Horse." Humans have to correct them, it's a Great Dane. Which, some humans admit, is as big as a small horse. -- BridgetK

Firrit had a pet. If you could call it a pet. It was also a mount and, in lieu of a friendly Deathworlder escort, a bodyguard and helpmeet for interstellar travel. The animal - and it was definitely an animal - was named Horse. That was, after all, her primary function - to act like a horse for Firrit to ride whenever he went into spaces shared by non-Havenworld species.

As far as names went, it was very serviceable. Horse was well-trained by a different animal handler and had learned some basic GalStand commands and would respond to handling via reins. The extra bulk of Horse's presence helped other, larger species recognise that -yes- Firrit was there. Or, for some Deathworlders, that Horse was there.

The Human currently paying attention to Horse had lapsed into some primitive mode of communication not easily translated into GalStand or GalSimple by Firrit's HUD. "Aaaww wookit da cute ol' puppy... hoozagoopuppyden? Hoozagoopupper? Yoosagoopupper! Yessooiz! Yessooiz!"

Humans were wont to react towards animals that way, Firrit knew. He had two options. Wait until the Human got it out of their system, or interrupt. Since he had things to do that day, Firrit interrupted. "Salutations, fellow cogniscent." And watched in slight schadenfreude as the Human realised that the animal had an owner attached.

"Oh. Shit. Sorry. Are they a service dog? I didn't mean to distract them."

"Horse is helper, yes," said Firrit in GalSimple. "Safety helper, movement helper, guard helper. Good helper."

The Human spent a portion of a minute processing this and said, "That is not a horse. That is a dog."

"Yes," said Firrit. "The dog is naming Horse. She is being good girl."

"Ooooh... right. Yes. I can see... the resemblance." The Human smiled as they tried and failed to stop themselves from petting Horse, who wriggled with joy. "Do you get a lot of people telling you she's a dog?"

"Not before today," confessed Firrit.

The Human seemed pleased. "Oh wow. I'm someone's First. Say. Hey. Would you like a Deathworlder's help as well, today?"

[Image (c) Can Stock Photo / ESIGHT]

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Don't service animals usually wear hi-vis so you know when they're working? :D

Normally, I would think. Any time I've seen a service animal here in the USA, they always have a highly visible vest and usually something on the leash that ID's them. Maybe not so much there?

You both make a good point, and I should have noted that a hi-vis saddle is not always that hi-vis.

My sister has a Great Dane. He is SO big, that when standing on his hind legs, he can easily tower over her kitchen island and so she has to remind him to NOT steal stuff off of it. Even on all four paws, his head comes up to her waist, and she's 5 ft 6 inches tall. She's not a short person. Those dogs, for all they're docile and very gentle for their size, the sweet goofs, are HUGE!

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