On Fridays I will choose a topic on which to give my take. Take being a nice word for opinion. I will simply share my thoughts on whatever random topic comes to mind. I look forward to seeing where this section leads us.
Dogs are the best. There is just no way around it. Growing up, my family always had at least one dog; oftentimes, we had two. My parents still have the dog we got when I was in fifth grade. Leo is fifteen now and somehow still ticking.
I moved out of my parents house and into an apartment in 2015. Though I wanted a dog, I thought it cruel to adopt one only to have him or her locked up all day without a yard for them to play in.
At the end of October of 2017, my little brother got himself a puppy, and I quickly came down with doggy fever. A friend of mine had told me about it being a bad idea to follow Paws in the City’s Facebook page, but I did not heed her warning. I not only followed Paws in the City, I also actively went looking for a dog.
During my first visit to their page, I found a beautiful dog whose name is Harper. I fell in love instantly, and began the application process right away. With apps like Rocket Mortgage and the like, I’m pretty sure buying a home is less rigorous than adopting a dog from Paws in the City.
I filled out an online application, and then I had to do a verbal interview. The verbal interview involved an in-depth dog-ground check. I had to tell the woman about all the dogs my family had ever owned and how long they lived. All of our dogs, sans one who got cancer before we adopted him, have lived a long time for dogs. This went over well with the head honcho with Paws in the City.
The next step was for Harper’s foster parent to bring her over for a meet and greet session at my apartment. It was love at first sight. Harper is an adorable German Shepherd / Shar Pei mix. She’s gorgeous, and she knows it, too; the sassy pants. I quickly learned she is a sucker for head rubs.
Normally there is a three day trial period after the meet and greet, but I was going out of town the following week, so I asked to postpone it a few days. I got Harper for her three day trial on November 12th.
I still had qualms about owning a dog whilst living in an apartment complex, so I vowed to take her running several times a week. We ran a couple times during her trial period, and she loved it. I hadn’t been running because I didn’t feel safe without a companion, so we got to train together.
Harper did great during her trial period, and it was easy for me to say yes to the dog. Doggy fever cured!
I was told Harper did not need to be crated, but I was either lied to, or Harper secretly hates my guts, because she most definitely needed to be crated. I didn’t know this going into my first week with her, so we had a rough go of it.
By the end of my first week, I was having some serious buyer’s remorse. Harper was waking me up in the middle of the night, and I would take her outside because I thought she needed to go potty.
After these after-midnight wake-up calls, I was not able to fall back asleep, which made for some very short nights and very long days. I still ran with her several times a week, and since I was up so early, I also did my own stuff in my apartment. I lost five pounds the first week I got her, not necessarily healthily.
I vented my frustration to a friend, and she gave me some invaluable dog-vice. Turns out, I was doing almost everything wrong, so I had to backtrack and retrain Harper not to do certain things (like bark in the middle of the night, acting like she had to go outside). I bought a crate without any hesitation, which helped give me peace of mind, and it kept her out of trouble…mostly.
The first couple of months were ruff, but we hit our stride in January, and I love her to death. I’ve never used the camera on my phone so much, and I’m completely unbiased when I tell you she is the cutest dog ever.
According to Ron Swanson, anything under fifty pounds is a cat, and cats are worthless. I’d lower the weight requirement to forty-five pounds and then wholeheartedly agree with Mr. Swanson.