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Dog gone it, quit pestering me about a pet

Submitted by on Friday, 3 April 2009 5 Comments

img_2174It’s been Big Guy’s most-repeated plea for five years, ever since he learned to say “goggy” and used the word to describe everything on four legs, from cats to horses.

“When can we have a dog?”

It’s been easy to come up with excuses for saying “no” to that one.

  • When Boots gets old enough to not chew on its tail.
  • When you realize that, unlike your stuffed animals, it hurts a real dog when you throw it in the air or dance on it.
  • When you’re old enough to feed, clean and walk it, because I have all I can handle keeping the two-legged beings fed, cleaned and walked around here.

I could just say “Ask Dad,” but that’s a calculated risk. If his urges to give the guys whatever they want overrides his hostility to animals in the house, I could wind up sleeping with a St. Bernard. And the bed’s already way more crowded some nights than it should be.

For about the past couple years, I’ve also been able to use the “Boots is afraid” rationalization. A neighbor’s big ugly dog nipped him on the shoulder when he could barely toddle, so he has been a bit freaked out since.

Ay, but that’s all changed now and I’m running out of excuses. Thanks a lot, Leeloo.

Leeloo is a shitzhu – a word that used to make me want to say “bless you” or express sympathy for gastrointestinal problems when someone said they had it – who came to live with friends of ours around Christmas.

She’s a tiny little thing with tiny little teeth, though Boots still howls mightily if she nips at him. She’s still a puppy, so she’s prone to do that at times. When she’s not running after someone in hopes of enticing them to play, she’s pirouetting on her back legs like a tiny little ballerina. When she wears herself out, she’ll curl on your lap and look up with those tiny little “love me” eyes.

She’s near perfect from the adult perspective, too. Tiny little dog means tiny little, er, output. That’s an asset because I’m lousy at potty training dogs and humans. She wouldn’t take up much room in the bed, either, when she inevitably crowds in.

She’s also gotten Boots past his fear of dogs, and for that I will be eternally grateful.

I just don’t want one of her in the house yet. Someday, though, when the guys are capable of feeding, cleaning and walking her …

Copyright 2009 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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  • Reno Martin said:

    Cute! I love dogs. One just passed away at 12 yrs of age. We still have two but would like another similar to Mikki, our recently passed dog. Go for it!

  • Rob Miracle said:

    A couple of thoughts. I love dogs and desperately want one. My wife does not so thats the end of that. Though I want one, I do not want to go through puppy stage again and secondly, we really can’t care for one now (no one to walk it during the day). Dog’s are fantastic once they get out of the puppy stage but it does fall on the parents to care for them. Its much better to occasional rent one. Perhaps you could “sit” for one occasionally to take care of the need without full adoption.

    The second thought isn’t about dogs as it is kids playing the parents against each other. Sherry and I decided that we have one firm rule: The kids have to ask both parents together and “one “no” means “no”.” “Whatever Mom says” or “Whatever Dad says” is a “yes” in this scheme since the parent is defaulting to the other.

    “What did mom say?” “No” “Then why are you asking me, you have the answer.”

    It pretty much raised to boys until they moved out.

    Our other system involves a voting scheme where Mom always wins.

    Each male bi-ped in the house gets 1 vote per year of existence. Mom gets 2 votes per year. It will be another 2-3 years before we catch her votes and hopefully by then the boys will be well on their own. You should consider adopting this rule.

  • Debra said:

    Rob, as the lone female bi-ped in this house, I LOVE that voting system. I’m a bit older than Dad, so that gives me an even bigger boost. The fact that I was 10 years older than dirt when I started having kids means the guys likely will never catch up.

    I think I’ll arbitrarily implement that rule today — using my Mom vote super powers to override any objections.

    And Dad, with an uncanny ability to sense a guy trap unless he’s in Toys R Us, is actually pretty good about checking to see if he’s being scammed. The ability also fails him when it comes to Pepsi or other junk food.

  • Debra said:

    Reno, a late lamented wonder dog also is part of my problem. She’s been gone for five and a half years but I’d had her for 14 and she was such a paragon of a pooch that I still have trouble thinking about another.

    But I know that one day I’ll cave …

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