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Saturday, December 20, 2008


I can't really explain it...I think I can attribute it to stress...I'm not thinking clearly...I've gone a little too loose in the noggin...I convinced my family to adopt a puppy. And voila! We are now proud owners of Cooper.

I can think of hundreds of reasons why owning a dog is not a good idea. I can also think of at least a few reasons why it is a good idea. I CANNOT explain why I wanted a dog. Those that know me well are aware of my past love affair with a couple cats. One in particular, Frederick, who stole my heart for 19 1/2 years. Losing him a couple years ago was beyond traumatic. I thought I would NEVER invite a pet into my heart again after that. I also got very busy with this parenting two kids thing, and the last thing I was interested in was managing a pet in addition to a 10 month old and a just turned three year old.

Fast forward to the past several weeks. The kids have been infatuated with kitties and puppies. Husband wanted a kitten...if we were going to talk pets, that is. Having been a cat person for the whole of my adult years, I'd never before considered owning a dog. So why the interest in a puppy? I can't explain it. I do know that I wanted nothing to do with cat litter again after spending nearly 20 years of my life dealing with it. I also dreamed of having a companion my kids could enjoy running around with outdoors and who was a bit more interactive. And besides, we DO have five acres to share with a pup. Yes, I know dogs are much higher maintenance. Yes, I thought long and hard about it. Yes, while I am a very responsible adult, I am still not positive a dog was the right choice.

Nonetheless, we accepted him into our home--Cooper, who is a bit of a castaway. We did not buy him from a high dollar breeder. We intentionally chose a mutt of sorts. I'd much rather rescue a needy soul, but we did want to choose a breed that, with our best guess, would be really good with the kids. I stumbled across someone needing to part with their Boston Terrier/Boxer mix puppy. Fortunately he was not a newborn puppy. I'm not THAT insane. Cooper is about 8 months old, and very charming. While Dear Husband gave into my whims for a pup this time, I think he got his part of the bargain fulfilled as well. Cooper, so far, seems to act more like a cat than a pup. He is extremely laid back and doesn't do much more than lie around and warm our laps. We haven't had the chance to "frisk him up" outdoors as it was 18 degrees today. Cooper is doing great with going potty outdoors and has not had a single accident indoors, but it is pitiful. He barely has any fur to keep him warm, and it is quite clear that he does NOT tolerate the cold weather well. He shivers uncontrollably outdoors in the biting wind. So I took pity on him and made him a little fleece jacket to wear outdoors. I'll have to post a picture of that later.

The kids adore him, although Dear Daughter confessed to having hoped for a puppy who would play "fetch" with her. I am hopeful that this extremely docile doggy will have some spirit and animation after he adjusts to this change in his life. I'm beginning to wonder if he thinks he's supposed to hibernate during the winter. He has slept the whole day away.

He only spent a month in his previous home, and before that he was apparently an indoor doggy until his owners had to be away from home too many hours and locked him in the shed outdoors before they finally pawned him off to a friend's home and then several weeks later to our home. So his life has been turned upside down quite a bit in his few short months. I would much rather have a docile, laid back puppy than one who is too hyper and destructive, but I'm beginning to wonder if we went too far in the "right" direction with this little guy.

Yes, Cooper IS wearing a sweatshirt in the above picture. That just goes to show how laid back he is. And besides, it was REALLY cold today! Who can argue with a high of 18 and a low of 4?


Otis said...

One of my best friends has a dog named Cooper. Good strong name for a dog.

I think the dog looks great and will certainly perk up soon.

On the few occasions we are forced to put our now ten-year-old dog in a kennel, she always sleeps for a week afterward. I think the stress of getting bounced around, not having a real home for a while, and being out in the cold can make a dog really tired. I almost guarantee your dog will have you begging for him to calm down soon.

As a dog guy, I think you made a great choice and won't regret it.

Zip n Tizzy said...

So far I've been relieved that it's never occured to my kids to ask for their own dog, even though they're quite fond of every one else's.

Your little cooper? Super cute!

He seems as pleased as the kids do. Look at that smile!

Riahli said...

That is a great mix. Both breed are great with kids, although boxers are suppose to be really active...maybe he will perk up a bit soon. I considered both before adopting a pug, which is truly a lazy dog most of the time. I think kids can really benifit from having a dog around the house.

I love dressing up my pug, she's my little girl, since I have all boys, we joke that she is the hairy sister. I have to stop my self from buying her those cute little clothes they have for dogs now days.

I understand not knowing for sure if you made the right choice, I adopted Luna when my youngest was only seven months old, and it was a little much...but in the long run she has been a nice addition to our home (most of the time). She is a great excuse for taking a break and going on a walk with her by my self.

Maternal Mirth said...

In my next life I want to be a dog. Sleeping the day away is really appealing ...

and Cooper is REALLY cute.

CaraBee said...

I really want a dog, but I am just not ready to deal with a toddler and a puppy at the same time. Yikes! Cooper sounds like exactly my kind of dog. Which is to say, catlike.

Nyssa's Mommy said...

Cooper is so cute! Now I want to squeeze your kids and your dog! I love that you dress him up! Love it. I still have a baby, so I'm good in the department yet! LOL.

Merry Christmas!

Blondie said...

MGM, as I said earlier elsewhere, I wish you the best of luck with Cooper! He's so cute, and not at all what I pictured you getting! But what a sweet story about how he came to be yours.

Just remember, be diligent with the housebreaking and keeping an eye on him at all times when he's not in his crate. I think it's almost more about you learning his habits than it is about housebreaking him. Think about learning your children's behaviors while potty training.

Oh yeah...this coming from me with one puppy, Boomer, who can't seem to figure out he should potty outside and sleep in his crate. As soon as he comes back inside, he potties in his crate! UGH!