Almost like having a third baby, but not quite. We're thinking about finally getting a dog! It's been a long time coming, I'm more of a dog-lover than Clay and our yard isn't really all that big (okay, it's tiny). For the longest time I thought we'd get a lab because they're just the perfect, all-around, great family dog. But every time we thought about it, we ended up putting it off again "until we move somewhere with a bigger yard."
Clay suggested a Cocker Spaniel, and although I like them, I was sort of stubbornly stuck on the idea of a lab. And then this past weekend I saw one at the park and spent some time chatting with its owner and something just clicked. It just seemed like the right dog for our family! They're smaller, but not a "small dog," they like the water and are sturdy enough to keep up with the kids and go on hikes with us. They're small enough to toss in the tub on a regular basis without a big production, and let's remember that our small yard means that we'll be scooping poop- size definitely matters in that department. Then there's that whole thing about them kind of looking like puppies forever; who doesn't love that?
So, we think we have one picked out. It's mostly black with little brown eyebrows and feet (just like the one below). It's super cute! So, if all goes according to plan, we should be a family of five in another week!
Here are some things I'm looking forward to (there are also some things I'm not looking forward to; I'm not completely unrealistic, just choosing to focus on the positive aspects of pet ownership!). A companion for the kids! My dogs were SUCH an important part of my childhood. We had a Collie and a Lab and each lived twelve years. I fully intend on letting the dog sleep on the kids' beds. I'm also looking forward to teaching them how to care for the puppy. She'll need to be brushed every day, as well as fed and watered and I think those are great jobs for the kids to learn. It'll be so good for them to enjoy the good feelings that come from caring for another living thing. I'm also looking forward to walks at the park, playing fetch, and hikes with a four-legged friend, because really, all those thing are even more fun with a dog!
Any last-minute words of advice for us? Tips for raising a puppy with kids that I might not anticipate? Ideas for making my life easier, because I do realize I'm complicating it, though for a worthy cause! I'd love to hear your thoughts. Or if you want to wax poetic about the doggie loves of your life, I'll totally listen. I might even share some stories about Maggie and Rosie, my childhood dogs, if I have a willing ear:)