I got a call from the shelter on Saturday. The little dog that I had looked at the week earlier had been cleared and didn’t have Parvo. He was ready to be adopted, if I would like, and and had to be picked up by the end of the weekend. Oh, then my mind started racing, what should I do.
Kaeson has pretty significant anxiety and it is getting worse as he gets older, especially with the extra testosterone that seems to be raging through his body as of late. He has a hard time with responsibility and motivation. He has a hard time dealing with life a lot lately. The doctor has been recommending a therapy animal for a while.
I sat and debated the benefits vs. the disadvantages of this decision all day Saturday and through Sunday morning. I called the shelter and asked if I could have until Monday evening to pick him up. They wouldn’t hold him. I called a couple of close friends and bounced the idea off of them. I didn’t want to make a decision of this magnitude with a light mind.
I am quite honestly one of the busiest people that I know. With one full time job, one side job, schooling, job hunting, kids, and other issues, I rarely have an extra second for myself or my children, let alone another living creature. I worry about leaving a dog home alone for such a long time during the day. I worry about my kids and they way that they react. I worry about it becoming too much of a responsibility.
Our last dog, Brody, ended up being a pain in the hiney. He was terrible to potty train, barked like crazy and was hyper as all can be. He would take off like a madman if we opened the front door and sometimes it would take days to find him. He was expensive to groom and got really moppy looking very quickly. Then there is food and treats and clean up! Oh boy.
I also worried about animal mortality. We have lost two pets since Christmastime. Our beloved pet toad, croaked a few days before Christmas. Then, as a gift, we got triops. That lasted about a month and then he bit the big one as well. Both times, Kelton was quite devastated. I can’t imagine the trauma that losing a dog would cause on the family.
The internal debate continued. An hour before closing time, I figured that I would drive down to the shelter and see how I felt. I drove trying to see what I felt in my heart and not my head. My head was telling me that it was a ridiculous choice, especially at this juncture of my life. There would always be other dogs that would come at more convenient times in my life. It was an added expense that I didn’t need right now.
My heart said, think of your kids. Your kids need something like this in their lives. He was microchipped, neutered and didn’t come with “baggage.” He was a small dog that I could handle. I couldn’t ever handle a large dog.
UGH- I kept saying that EXACT word in my head over and over. I didn’t know what to do. I got to the shelter and ended up going through the transaction, the whole time double checking their, “what if it doesn’t work” policy. They brought him out. He was MUCH teenier than I had remembered. He was scared and shaking. I don’t blame him. I was too. I got so nervous, I lost my car keys… again.
I took this tiny dog, a HUGE bag of pee-pee pads, the food I had purchased, and a bag of toys the shelter gave us and headed to my car. The poor dog was so frightened and kept jumping around the car. I though, what did I get myself into.
We got home, and he got out of the car and I got his dishes set up and sat on the floor with him for a bit. He started sniffing and I took him outside. It was all uphill from there. The dog didn’t bark, he didnt have a single accident, he followed me around and even found his little doggie bed (that we have had since Kelton was 2.) We went on a walk, and on our return, he knew exactly which house was ours, even though we returned a different way than we had left. It was perfect.
The kids came home MUCH later that night. He was a bit nervous, but after he warmed up, he went right to Kaeson and snuggled up on his lap. They melted into each other and just snuggled. Eventually the dog went upstairs to bed and Kaeson came down and snuggled up to him again and fell asleep. In that singular heartwarming moment, I knew that I had made the right decision. Sometimes the best things do not always come at the times that we expect them to, but they work.
Oh, and on a total side note, still no bark and no accident over a day later…. and he is asleep on my chest as I finish typing this up. Total win.