About a month ago, Jon uttered the words, “Maybe we should get a dog.” It took my breath away.
When Jon & I were dating, he pulled over on his way from Waco (and law school) to Dallas where I was working at NationsBank (now Bank of America) and bought me a dog. Oh, she was the cutest almost white, yellow lab. He paid around $50, put her in a box, set her shot gun and won over my heart (yet again) when he brought her to my door.
Such a great dog, she even played a role in our engagement. (He put the ring on her collar, waited for me to see it, then got down on his knee and changed my life in the most wonderful way.) She was there when we moved into our first house. Tail wagging, she welcomed and probably assisted a couple of burglars that cleaned us out weeks after our wedding. She loved everyone, never met a stranger and adored our kids.
When we moved to a new house (a very old “new” to us house) about eight years ago, we needed to repair the fence. The fence landed toward the bottom of our repair list, so we and sent her to visit a friend’s ranch in east Texas. Sweet Sadie was killed in a car accident, running after a bus of school kids that had come to the ranch for a fishing field trip. To say those friends felt bad is an understatement. We were so sad, but found great solace that she was in hog heaven at that ranch – running, playing, swimming all day long.
Since then, we’ve had a few hermit crabs (yuck!), very cool fire-belly toads (they would sing to each other at night), 2 geckos and an outdoor cat that the kids rehabilitated from severe malnutrition. Oh, and throw in a few beta fish here and there. Nothing cuddly and sweet, though. The cat was close, but had an agenda of his own and that was four years ago.
Boy do these kids ache for animal friendship. In our house, it would probably be helpful to have a non-judgmental party patiently listen to the moans and groans of sibling mistreatment.
That’s the kids. For me? I adore animals. As a kid, I brought everything home I could find. We even adopted 2 little baby raccoons abandoned by their mother at the lake when I was in fifth grade. The other night Jon saw a raccoon scurry down our driveway and up a tree.
With Jack only three, it just hasn’t been the right time. (In fact, even now it might be a little early.) But we’ve started down the road. First step, what kind of dog should we get? The kids and I would like some cute little thing (not teensy, maybe medium) that can snuggle with you on the couch. Dad wants to protect his “man-card” … so something in the lab category is on his agenda. He also apparently cares about the color – yellow or white. (Our friend around the corner has the cutest little black lab pups ready to go home. He gave it a bug thumbs down. I’m now on the hunt for a light colored dog. Whatever.)
I’d love to have little or no shedding involved. A Labradoodle looks good to me. Response from Dad, “I’m not having a dog with ‘oodle‘ in its name.” … Okay.
More than anything, I really want a calm dog. A big old door-mat that just lies around, letting kids dress it, ride it, climb all over it without a peep of protest. Just lots of love.
I think I’ve found the perfect dog – an English Golden Retriever.