It’s been busy here these last few months, busy with preparation and even busier with what we were preparing for: a puppy. We took the leap and got a puppy, a bundle of fur equipped with sharp little teeth and clumsy paws and more muscle than you’d think a baby anything could have.
So we kept looking and found a breeder we felt comfortable with. She tests her dogs and doesn’t breed until all the clearances are in. I talked with her over the course of about six months before we filled out an application. (You really want to work with a breeder who makes you jump through a few hoops. It shows they care about where their puppies go and not just the fee.) Once the pregnancy was confirmed we went to meet the breeder and her dogs. We wanted to get an in-person feel for both. It was a match.
On June 2 we brought home our boy. He was ten weeks old, sweet and beautiful. We named him Finn, a nod to my heritage.
Now we get to the busy part. I expected it to be work. Yep, I did. I knew I’d be tired. Yeah, that too. I knew training would take time and energy. Check, knew that was part of the deal. I didn’t know I’d be so cross-eyed with exhaustion I’d sit on the floor and cry. I didn’t have a clue that I’d spend my days and evenings watching his every move in order to catch that tiny bit of body language that said I’m about to pee NOW, and that I’d be late to the scoop-him-up-and-run-outside-party most of the time. Nor did I expect that he’d look me straight in the eye with a hah-try-to-stop-me look just as he chomped down on every piece of furniture in my family room. I most especially wasn’t prepared for the criticism I’ve received from people who think they know all about puppy raising. Those same people who disregard advice from the Vet, the trainer, and every bit of common sense about bringing a dog into your home. Yeah. That one knocked me for a loop.
But beyond that, deeper than all the work and exhaustion and hurt feelings, I have a dog. Read that again with awe. I have a dog. He’s four and a half months old now. All the work and training are beginning to fall into place, and though we have a long way to go yet, we can see that our energetic puppy is going to be an awesome dog. House training went faster than expected. He goes to the door reliably, asking to be let out; he’s learning, slowly, to walk politely on leash; someday, hopefully soon, he’ll learn that keeping all four on the floor will get him petted faster than jumping up for attention and that the couch is not his playground; there’s a split second of hesitation just before his teeth sink into a chair arm and a quicker release when we tell him no.
We got a puppy and life isn’t going to be as quiet around here as it was before he came. And that makes me really happy.