Sunday, February 17, 2013

Journey to the Dog

After losing our beautiful, awful, drive you crazy, every bodies favorite husky to cancer, we decided that it was time to look for another dog.

Last week we started the process finding the perfect match. Was it a little soon? Yeah, probably. But we also know that there are a lot of great dogs who need a good home. Something we are more than capable of providing. So the search began for a new addition that was both good with other dogs and children.

With in a couple of days we found what looked like a match. A gorgeous pit bull mix, named Rose. Yes, I know their reputations. No, I haven't lost my mind. What I knew was she was the only calm dog in a kennel full of barking, lunging, lunatics. So we asked to see her. They brought her to a small room with a few chairs and a lot of space. She came to each of us in turn, tail wagging and placed her head in each of our laps. When my daughter got up a moved around the room, Rose followed seeking gentle affection, which of course she received in abundance.

Though I had reservations about her particular breed, I couldn't ignore how sweet natured she was. We made arrangements to have her meet our nine year old Shiba Inu. No, I haven't been drinking while I type this. It's a real breed.

When we returned Rose greeted us with the same gentle affection she had already displayed. Our shiba was not greeted so kindly. Though she never barked, growled, or lunged, Rose did make her displeasure of him known by her stiff body language and utter avoidance of his presence. This was not a good sign. We asked the shelter attendant if we could take them for a walk hoping they would mesh better on more neutral ground. It was rainy out, but the attendant agreed to go with us.

The only thing we accomplished was getting muddy shoes, wet socks, and further signs of aggression. Rose never growled or gave verbal warning, but it her stiff stance and flattened ears told us she was not a fan of our poor little guy. I wasn't going to risk either dogs safety for our own selfish wants. So sadly, we had to leave Rose behind.

And our search for the perfect dog continued.

My husband and I had issues agreeing on which breed to choose. He was set against labs, I decided that I just wasn't comfortable around pitbulls, despite some real sweeties. We spent hours searching online and we only had a few leads. We had already decided that, though we loved our husky, that we wanted to try something different. Our husky was pretty, extremely affectionate, and had a lot of personality, but she was also a lot of work. She was willful and never listened. She constantly stole food. And the fur...oh my God, the fur. Every three months or so it looked like it snowed in our house.

We tried several different local shelters without any success. After a couple of frustrating days, we decided to load up the whole family, dog included, and drive an hour to try some area shelters. Since we were unfamiliar with the city, we ended up lost more often than not. Even the GPS was confused at one point. The annoying electronic voice insisted we were at a rescue, when in reality we were at a park. Luckily the park ranger was able to lead us in the right direction. They really are very helpful. Anyway, we ended up retracing our path many times as we traipsed back and forth across the city, searching for the addresses we had on our lists. We ended up with:

We were told one dog would probably eat ours.
One ran anytime our daughter got near him.
One weighed more than me.
One tried to eat ALL OF US. Seriously, I almost wet my pants.

After a few hours of fruitless searching we had crossed off all of the addresses, save one. We finally reached it...just to discover that they didn't actually have any dogs there. It was just the place that accepted donations. The lady was sympathetic to us and my four year old who was disappointed so she offered to let us see her dog. A gorgeous, black and white, blue eyed husky.

We of course melted. After seeing how affectionate that dog was with our daughter, we left saying how maybe another husky wouldn't be so bad. I told my husband I wouldn't mind a red one. Our last one was silver.

The next day we went to another adoption day. Out front was a beautiful, red and white, blue eyed husky. Not even kidding. It was the first dog we saw. I spoke with the rescue lady who was so protective of this dog you would have thought she gave birth to it. She sent people away with military precision.

"How much experience have you had with huskies? None. Next."
"You have a pitbull at home? Next."
"Oh, you have had a husky. Great. Oh, you left it when you moved? Next."

It was finally our turn.
"You've had a husky?"
"What happened to her?"
"We lost her to cancer."

On, and on it went. Until finally

"You know, I'm not giving her away today. But please call me next week. Please, please call me."

Sometimes fate just works that way.

So tomorrow we call and hope our search is at an end. I'm still glad our end didn't come with that one dog that tried to eat us.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Revenge - Mommy Style.

My daughter is now four. It's no secret that when she was younger, and still taking naps, that she was a complete pain to get to sleep. There were days she would fight nap time for hours, and me, not wanting to give in, kept insisting on it. So we would lock in battle, sometimes I would win and she would sleep. More often she would fuss around her room, doing everything she could to keep herself awake. It always ended up with me so exhausted and frustrated that I just wanted to curl up and eat chocolate.

Finally, I admitted defeat. Days with afternoon naps were a thing of the past. It simply wasn't worth the two and three hours of battle for just an hour or so of noon time peace. The bonus was we no longer had the same fight for bed time. When eight o'clock rolled around she was more than ready for bed. It's been a few months since her last afternoon nap and we all have adjusted well.

But today, oh today, I got a little piece of revenge. My daughter decided that she was going to be the mommy and me the baby. I nearly squealed with delight when she decided I needed a nap. As she tucked me in I thought of all the times I had done the same thing and how many ways she used to fight that nap. I decided that I was going to try them all. So I...

1. Pretended cried for no reason so she had to come back and check on me
2. Kept getting out of bed so she had to keep putting me back
3. Got out bed and hid, so she flipped when she couldn't find me.
4. Played with the toys in her room, only to rush back into bed when I heard her coming.
5. Ask for a glass of water
6. Tossed and turned incessantly

and her absolute favorite thing to do when she was small

7. Cry and say, I want my mommy with me!

I have to admit, she stuck with the first few items really well. Patiently tucking me back in, or leading me back to the room. I was impressed. She was pretty good at this. Until we got to number 7. Yeah, 7 is when she broke. She marched over, grabbed her Belle doll and handed it to me.

"Here," she huffed. "Here is your new mommy!" Then she stormed out of the room. It left me in a fit of giggles. But it also made me wonder...why the hell didn't I think of that!