They say there are dog people and cat people and I am most definitely a dog person.
I have said before I have a funny farm and that means I have a few dogs. I am a firm believer that my dogs are part of my family and I lovingly refer to them as my “fur babies.” Prior to having my son my husband and I acquired three dogs, two cute little Pugs named Max and Gracie and one Husky/German Shepard we nicknamed Mama Dog.
When my son came along my dogs were slightly apprehensive to his arrival because he was immobile and cried a lot so they mostly kept their distance. Now my son is mobile and eager to play so they continue to keep their distance but for completely different reasons. They are all older dogs that are living out their golden years and I’m sure they would prefer a calmer and quieter setting than a 20 month old little boy provides. They held residence here for a long time before we introduced the tiny human to them and while they love him they are old, cranky and not as playful as they once were.
I remember when I was a kid I grew up with a few dogs and I loved it. I knew when I had a child I wanted them to experience childhood with a dog as well. As my son has been growing we have watched him as he tried to play with our geriatric dogs and my husband and I decided it was the perfect time to add a puppy into the mix. So a few weeks ago we added a Great Pyrenees puppy named Edna to our crazy brood. When we were making our decision I thought about all the fun they would have growing up together but somehow I failed to understand that essentially my husband and I would now be raising two toddlers.
Edna is a cute ball of fluff who resembles a polar bear cub but unfortunately I think she was crossed with a great white shark. She chews everything she can…just like my son does. I find myself standing in the kitchen telling my son not to put something in his mouth and then hollering out the kitchen window for Edna to stop chewing on whatever she has found. I have lost five pairs of flip flops, two pairs of my son’s shoes, one pair of my husband’s shoes, two extension cords, numerous lawn ornaments and a couple patio chair cushions.
Enda is very sweet and she is very gentle and patient with my son. Each night when we get home we head out to play with all our dogs and as soon as my son is out of the car he starts calling Edna. He is just as excited as she is to reunite after a long day apart, my other dogs trail along behind keeping a safe distance and my son and Edna lead the pack giggling and giving each other kisses. They are both working on using their manners and listening. There are times neither of them will listen to me but all my son has to do is look at Edna and say “no” and she instantly stops whatever she was doing. I wish they listened to me that well.
For both my son and Edna the world is still new and exciting; it is something that requires more exploration. They both have a lot to learn and experience and every time I discover a half eaten flip flop or a devoured patio cushion I question if it was the right time to get a puppy. But then I watch my son’s eye light up when Edna comes around the corner, he pats his leg and calls her name and she runs over to greet him with kisses as they run into the yard to play and I know in that moment we made the right decision.
Christina Komives is sales manager for The Wetaskiwin Pipestone Flyer and writes a regular column for the paper.