Months ago, I got one of those junk emails forwarded to me about amazing animal stories. One of them was about a mother Tiger in a zoo who had lost her cubs. She was so distraught that the zookeepers were worried about her health. Around the same time, a mother pig had died leaving her piglets behind. So the zookeepers wrapped the piglets in tiger fur and introduced them to the mommy Tiger. Amazingly, the Tiger adopted the piglets and came out of her depression.
I thought of this story because 3 weeks ago, we adopted a puppy. Our adorable little Puggle, who Caylie named Buddy, has essentially become my piglet.
Getting a puppy wasn’t a spontaneous decision for the family. Although Caylie has been begging us for a dog since she could actually say the word “dog”, Mike and I have always felt like we had enough going on in our life without adding anything else to it. But a few months ago, I started listening to Caylie beg for a dog and I thought, why not? I just potty trained my son, so I’m used to cleaning up messes on the carpet. We have the yard space for a dog to run around. The kids are both very gentle with and genuinely love animals. So I started my campaign on Mike’s reservations about pet ownership. Obviously, I won!
The cutest moment so far has been watching my son, who both loves animals and is wary of them, hold Buddy on his lap in the car, lean down to kiss him and whisper, “I love you, Bud.” I also peeked into the playroom one morning to see Caylie and Chase sitting at their little picnic table, with Buddy on the tabletop. Caylie was informing both Buddy and Chase of proper behavior during circle time. So Buddy has already experienced playing school with the kids!
Buddy has quickly become part of the Noyer family. He is, surprisingly, a quiet dog, but very playful. He plays hard and loves to snuggle up with us when he’s tired. One of the first nights we had him, I commented to Mike that even Buddy’s eyelashes were blond. Mike response was, “Sounds like everyone else in this family!” Within the first few nights, Buddy was calm in his crate and sleeping through the night. After 3 weeks, he knows his name, comes when called and will sit on command. He is smart, cute, amazingly stubborn and follows me all around the house. Meaning, he is exactly like my children.
Becoming a dog owner is much like having a new baby in the house (without the sleep deprivation). He eats, sleeps, poops and is so adorable that everyone who sees him makes this squealing little noise and speaks in a higher-pitched voice. There is just something calming, for me, about feeling his warm little weight asleep on my chest. Buddy has been a wonderful form of therapy for me. My little surrogate puppy has filled part of the hole in my heart. And the complete chaos of having a puppy in the house with 2 young children has kept me so busy, there is no time or energy for me to think about anything else.