This story was originally published in
Day One, a weekly literary journal dedicated to short fiction and poetry from emerging writers.
After the violent, shadowy events surrounding his father’s disappearance and his sibling’s disbandment, Martín flees Mexico City with his wife, newborn son, and dog. Isolated and homesick in Madrid, Martín awakes one sticky, hot morning, quietly overwhelmed by the circumstances—his growing aversion to his son, the dog’s sudden illness, and the vague unresolved danger from his abandoned homeland. Gripping, disturbing, and moving, Barefoot Dogs is a story about the struggle of a man who, estranged from his home and traumatized by his past, is trying to be a father after the loss of his own.
About the Author
Antonio Ruiz-Camacho was born in Toluca, Mexico, in 1973. For the last seventeen years, he’s occupied every imaginable position in a newsroom, taught creative writing to bilingual second graders, and sold Mexican handcrafts in a flea market in Spain. A 2009 Knight Fellow at Stanford University and a 2014 Dobie Pasiano Fellow sponsored by the Graduate School at UT and the Texas Institute of Letters, he writes fiction and nonfiction in English and Spanish and knows how to make Mexican sushi from scratch. He earned his MFA from the New Writers Project at the University of Texas at Austin, and his BA in communications from Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in StoryQuarterly, Kirkus Reviews, Poets & Writers, Etiqueta Negra, and La Buhardilla. After finishing his story collection Barefoot Dogs, he’s currently at work on a novel that takes place in the Mexican town of Cuévano and the Texan city of Austin. You can follow him on Twitter @aruizcamacho.