Chapter 8 Summary
Under Opal’s care, Winn-Dixie begins to look more healthy: his bald spots fill in, his fur stays shiny, and he loses his limp. The dog appears proud to look like he belongs to somebody instead of looking like a stray. To complete the look, Opal thinks Winn-Dixie should have a collar and leash, so she goes to Gertrude’s Pets, where there are animals and supplies of all types. She finds a handsome red leather collar and leash that she thinks will be just perfect for Winn-Dixie. But dogs are not allowed inside the pet shop, so Opal holds up the collar and leash to the window so Winn-Dixie can see what she has found. Winn-Dixie smiles, sneezes, and furiously wags his tail at the sight of the collar and leash, and Opal knows he loves them.
But Opal has a big problem—the collar and leash are expensive, and she does not have enough money from her allowance to cover the cost. Opal explains her situation to the clerk, whose name is Otis; she asks him to set her up on an installment plan so she can pay off the collar and leash over the course of the next few weeks. The clerk questions Opal’s plan, and suddenly a parrot perched on top of one of the fish tanks screams out, “Gertrude!” Otis says that he does not think the owner...
(The entire section is 465 words.)