RICHMOND, VA – Local punk John “Skeez” McGillivary was startled early Sunday morning to find his best friend, his beloved German Shepherd mix, Darby, unresponsive under a pile of bandanas.
Animal control later announced that Darby had suffocated under the weight of over 400 bandanas varying in color and dampness.
“I can’t believe I let this happen,” said Skeez, clutching a few handfuls of bandanas. “It started simply enough — a bandana tied around Darby’s neck as a makeshift collar. But like any dog owner, you add a bandana here, a bandana there… and then, next thing you know, your dog is crushed under the weight of fashion accessories.”
Softly sobbing, he added, “I need a minute alone, please.”
After a long, wistful stare out the window, Skeez explained that each bandana Darby wore represented an experience they shared. A particularly sentimental one was fastened out of a blue tarp he found floating down the Shenandoah River during a weekend camping trip in Rockingham County, Virginia.
“This red one here was stolen from a gas station outside of Philly. The store manager kept yelling that ‘no dogs were allowed in the store.’ But Darby wasn’t having it, and he took a leak on the newsstand — and while the clerk was distracted, I swiped the bandana,” Skeez said with a soft smile, remembering his friend. “I also stole a six pack of Schlitz, but Darby was never much of a drinker so I drank that all myself.”
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Animal control officer Darrell McIndoe believes these accidents can be avoided with proper education.
“Sadly, we see this happen a lot. The best thing to do is stop hoarding bandanas and, more importantly, do not make your dog wear saddle bags to carry your junk,” said McIndoe. “And if it starts to rain, remember: those bandanas soak up water and will get very heavy. So you can lighten the dog’s load by throwing that stuff right in the nearest dumpster.”
Before leaving the scene, Skeez added one last bandana to his friend’s collection. Holding back tears, Skeez said, “I have been saving this one — it is a skull and crossbones. Here’s to the last journey, buddy.” Skeez was unaware Darby’s remains had been removed from the pile of rags moments before.
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