(I wrote this before we added Gypsy to our family)
Monday, February 8, 2010
Puppy Lovers Anonymous! Help!
Jasmine Jane Clementine Wills is the best little dog in the whole wide world. She is sweet, smart, well behaved, devoted and funny. She’s not territorial and enjoys playing with other dogs. She’s not a barker or a jumper. Though she does have a problem with licking people to greet or thank them. She loves music. And she watches television. No kidding. She likes her sofa time and situates herself next to me so that she actually watches. The show will keep her attention as long as the music and action is fast paced. Her favorites toys are squeaky toys that she likes to play a variation of keep away, with sport. She holds it with her front paws to keep us from kicking it, which is exactly what she wants us to do so she can then chase “Mr. Squeaky” and do the keep away thing. She is a wonderful auto traveler. And a really good RVer except that she growls at all the RVs and diesels that tow them so we need to work on that. We’re beginning to think that perhaps she is subdued while we’re camping not because she’s content but because she’s depressed. This revelation came when we arrived home from our last trip. When we came into the house she immediately began joyfully playing, jumping and running. My husband, Ed, and I looked at each other and sadly said in unison, “She hates camping.”
Did I mention that I really like Jasmine?
In fact, I really like dogs. Especially dogs that don’t act too much like dogs. Dogs that are well behaved, don’t expect much from their owners and don’t bark much. Like Jasmine, my little 80 pound Boxer Dog.
Somehow over the years, our family ended up having three dogs, several cockatiels, a few rabbits, gerbils and a cat in our home, all at once. One by one the pets either died or moved out. As the last two dogs moved out with two of our daughters, I missed them. And then adjusted. Now our pet population has been reduced to one cat named Allysea and one dog named Jasmine. Very soon the cat will be moving out. And Jasmine will be alone. I am fearful she will be lonely for a four legged friend.
And herein lies a dangerous dilemma.
On the one hand, I admit that having one dog is easy. I can play with her daily, take walks and take her in the car to run short errands, regardless of how busy I am. She has become a daytime companion. I can easily afford vet and food costs. When we camp, it’s simple to find one tree to temporarily attach her long lead to while we’re both setting up the RV. I convince myself that she will adjust to being with only humans and will actually end up being more devoted to us. That’s a good thing.
On the other hand, I don’t even have to close my eyes to picture round short legged puppies running, jumping and tumbling over each other. And I can see any one of them in my living room romping with Jasmine who simply loves the company of other dogs. I can see her teaching the puppy how to ring the bell by our back door to potty out side, to whimper when she wants us to play with Mr. Squeaky, or to sit quietly seat belted in the car.
I told my husband that regardless of my list of valid Reasons to Have Only One Dog, if I saw any puppy anywhere not one of those reasons would surface to my consciousness. I would immediately fall off the One Dog Wagon and run straight home with that puppy held close to my chest.
Help! Where is Puppy Lovers Anonymous? I have to sign up. Fast!