We did it. We got a dog. We are now the proud owners of a sweet female beagle. Saturday we met several beagles from the local beagle rescue group. One cutie was a humper, so she was out, regardless of how photogenic she was. We decided that while her face was made for photos, we didn’t really want to post pictures of her attempting to do naughty acts to the toddler.
We totally fell in love with a little male with no bad habits, even typical beagle ones like howling, but we ruled him out because of his extreme timidity. M and I both tend to speak harshly to PJ when he’s in trouble (go figure) and this poor, formerly-abused puppy would be scarred for life having that kind of yelling around him on a regular basis. It broke our hearts to pass him up because we both wanted to see what kind of wonderful dog he would grow into.
So we chose the third dog, a sweet female who is already full-grown and has an amazing intuition for people and what they need from her. It’s been amazing watching her acclimate herself to our household. I can tell she misses her foster family, whom she lived with for over a year. But she has fallen in love with us already, and us her too. She adores M (what dog doesn’t, though?) and likes me well enough. (Yes, I’m jealous. I’ll admit it.) She’s very interested in PJ, especially at mealtimes, and protective of both boys. She’s a licker, which PJ isn’t so sure about, but BabyN keeps letting her lick his face. I think she’s slipped some tongue in there a few times too.
I think I’ll get over my germophobia in relation to the boys awfully fast with her around.
It turns out that I definitely do have allergies to beagles (there actually was some uncertainty there), but it’s much better than my allergies to cats. One Claritin seems to have it under control pretty well. Hopefully being exposed to it this much will mean I react less around other people’s dogs too. Maybe the time spent with my in-laws won’t be filled with fighting for breath anymore.
PJ is reacting really well to having a dog. He has had a real language explosion in relation to the dog, spouting out a full sentence for us yesterday when we brought her home: “I got a dog! I got a dog!” He wants to play with her all the time and laughs and squeals at everything she does.
I was really worried about trying out a dog again after the problems we had early last year. I kept telling myself it was just that dog, and puppies in general, and even then maybe it would have worked out if I hadn’t gotten pregnant right after we got her. But in reality, I thought I was making excuses and that I wasn’t ready for the responsibility of a dog.
It turns out that my excuses were valid, though. It’s great having a dog. We just needed the right dog. The last one was too young and not yet housetrained. She was too much of a puppy and chewed on everything, especially toes, especially toddler toes. The last we heard about her, she was still doing all the same puppy stuff after a year and repeated training from professionals. We couldn’t have handled all of that, especially when I was so sick in early pregnancy that I could barely take care of myself, much less a disobedient puppy.
So I’m very happy with our choice for a dog this time around. Unless she has some crazy behavior we haven’t seen yet, this is definitely the dog for us. It just feels so right to glance over and see a sweet beagle sleeping on the couch next to me.
At last we’re the average family with 2-ish kids, a middle class house, a mini-van, and a dog. We’re just missing the white picket fence.