We Got A Dog: A Cat Person’s Perspective

We got a dog.

You’re probably wondering where the hell that came from?  I am a little too.  You see, apparently men have to have dogs.  It must date back to the caveman days or something.  Ever since we have been married the subject of dogs has come up often.  When we lived in our trailer as newlyweds and the seven years on beyond that having a dog was not a possibility.

Now we have a house.  It’s not tiny, it’s not huge.  It’s our home and it’s still standing, which is good.  We have a good sized backyard that is (mostly) fenced in.  And now that my husband is done with school the dog subject has started coming up quite a bit, much to my dismay.

I don’t dislike dogs.  I’ve just never had one.  I have always wanted a golden retriever, and I’m not sure why.  Anyway, we have visited various animal shelters and usually fill out paperwork and then we never hear anything else from them.  Apparently if you go to the place a town away from where we live they will only give you a shot at an animal if they “like” you.  Seeing as we are so unloveable I figured we were going to never adopt any more pets.  Which is sad, because I really would like to get another kitty.

This past weekend we visited a shelter that we had visited a couple of times.  There was a sweet dog who seemed quite calm.  He was a bigger dog-not huge but not a wee little thing either.  Hubby and the kids took it out and seemed to like it.  So we filled out the papers.  Anyplace else we do this they must shred it as soon as we leave.  Apparently not here.  Turns out it was same day service.

So we have a dog.

He’s sweet.  He’s a puppy.  He’s very boisterous.  He thinks he is smaller than he actually is-a bull in a china shop.  He hates to be left alone.  As long as you are near he is very happy.  As near as we can tell though, he was taught sit and is well house trained as far as the bathroom goes, but we don’t think the previous owners did much of anything with him.  Including giving him dog food in a bowl.

So we are charged with the task of training the pup.  Apparently the age he is at is quite a difficult age for puppies.  Many owners give up and that’s when the puppies end up in the shelters.  I certainly think he has potential.  He listens to me sometimes.  He listens more to my husband.  He needs to listen to me too!  I hope he starts doing that soon, because otherwise I will have no skin left on my hands!

We have determined that he was also never taken for walks.  According to the shelter, he was left tied up in the yard all the time.  So I have tried to take him out.  I have about had my arm ripped out of my body.  It’s like trying to walk a mack truck.  You’re supposed to train the dog to walk next to you so there is some slack in the leash.  No slack when he’s with me!  My hands are so raw that I had to bring him back after only a few minutes tonight-he was jerking and jumping all over the place. My husband got to puppy sit while I finished my exercising for the evening!  This was the only reason I was really even interested in a dog was for the protection potential and the great exercise factor.  Walking him isn’t exactly great exercise if you have to do it right!

My husband is the disciplinarian, and it’s his dog, so as far as he’s concerned I can leave most of that up to him.  However I AM the one who will be walking him most of the time if I want any exercise.  I have also tried it with two children and a stroller.  It was NOT fun!  What I am dreading here is coming up-my husband gets to leave to go on a business trip for two days.  There will be no reprieve from dog or children!  Nooooooooooooooooooooooo!

At least the children love the dog.  My four year old has already painted it.  No it’s not what you think.  She was outside with him in the backyard and tried to paint him with the sidewalk paint (it’s like sidewalk chalk but it’s paint).  She gave him some very nice polka dots!  Perhaps she wanted a dalmation?

I don’t dislike the dog.  But I am a cat person.  I like independent animals.  I really don’t want to have to entertain a giant furry panting animal with his soggy chewy toy at the end of the day.  My cat comes and goes.  We pet her, we feed her, change her litter, and we all get along pretty well.  The cat does not like the dog, and she has made it QUITE clear that she is pissed.

He is sweet.  He loves me.  He comes up and lays his big head on my knee, or jumps on the couch and snuggles up as close as he can get.  Those are the times when I enjoy having a dog.  He’s just so BIG.  And clutsy.

It’s been quite a source of stress for me this week.  I was on a pretty good routine until he came and then I had Mom visiting too.  Fell behind on my responsibilities a bit.  Hopefully we will be caught up this weekend-our State Fair is Saturday.

Needless to say, the dog will NOT be going with us.  He’ll be spending a very pleasant day out in the yard and in the garage!

I rather imagine this is how our cat feels… if we ever see her again.

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