Sunday, June 5, 2011

We Are Three

The time has really flown by.  We've been in our new townhouse almost two months now, and we are starting to feel settled in.  One of the things that we'd been talking about for a long time was getting a dog.  I've had dogs my whole life.  When I was a baby and my Grandmother took care of me while my mother worked, she had a lovely older Irish Setter named Ginger and a black poodle named Pepi.  We had a German Shepard/Great Dane mix named Fritz.  When we moved from the Redwood foothills to the suburbs my parents gave Fritz away, and soon after that my grandparents were killed in a car accident.  I think the loss of the dogs in my life was representative of the huge void I felt during those years.  When I was older, arranging my life so that I could have a dog was always a priority.  I can step back through the dogs in my life with probably much greater accuracy (and greater affection) than the men.  A few times, conflicts between dogs and men were pivotal points.  I wish I could say the dogs always won, but when they didn't, the men didn't last long after.

At the time M was born, I had two black Labs named Molly and Maggie.  When we all moved to California, part of what made the decision was that my parents had a huge house and fenced yard, and my dad helped me install a dog door.  Sadly, both developed Mast Cell tumors that despite (very expensive) surgery, ended up ending their lives prematurely. 

We've been back in Colorado for two years now, and a week ago we adopted a lovely 2 year old female black Lab from a Lab Rescue organization.  She's a wonderful dog and has good manners, is already housebroken, past the chewing stage, and is great with my daughter.  She's happy to go for walks and has settled right in.  The adjustment period has been going surprisingly well. 

I am a homebody at heart, and something very deep and very basic inside me is calmer, happier, and more secure with a dog in the house.  I also think that it is good for M, being an only child, to experience having to take someone else's needs into consideration.  So we walk the dog together, and she feeds her, and we talk about what the dog needs and how to care for her.  I have no illusions about who is primarily responsible for her, but as M gets older she can take on more.  It's good for me to have a dog to walk again... getting me up off the couch is always a good thing.  And there's something so satisfying about listening to the dog breathing next to my bed at night.  It feels like the last piece has dropped into place.


  1. Congratulations on the addition of a new family member - dogs definitely make life feel "complete!"

  2. She looks like a beautiful animal. M looks very happy there with her too!

  3. That's wonderful, J! So glad your new dog is working out. She's a beauty! :)

  4. Fantastic. She will be M's best friend. Two lovely girls you got there, J.

  5. Thanks, everyone! We are very happy!