A Year of Gifts
What is it about puppies that make them so irresistible? I think it's the eyes, looking at you with unconditional love. Throw in floppy ears, and plump little paws and our hearts melt.
We don't currently have a dog of our own. We used to, but when we lost our thirteen-year-old Brittany named Winnie, that was it. We had three active kids, two full-time jobs, and firsthand knowledge of how much work a dog can be.
Oh, the kids tried. They hinted, begged, and would stoop so low as to show us pictures of dogs looking for new homes, meant to sway our "hard no." But we stood firm. The closer we got to all of them leaving for college, the more convinced we were that we didn't want to be tied down at this stage of life. And before you start guessing that I'll be wrapping up this post by admitting to finally caving on the whole "we should get a dog" thing, don't. We haven't.
I've figured out a better solution – once the kids leave the house, watch as they get their own dogs! I can get on board with the idea of "grand puppies." The little cutie pies come to visit, maybe spend a few days, cuddle with me while I write or watch television, and infuse the house with laughter over their antics. We miss them when they leave, but then we're free to go about our business, knowing they are in the loving hands of our kids.
I imagine this is very similar to how one feels once grand babies enter the picture, but we aren't there
Let me introduce you to three special little dogs that each hold a piece of my heart these days.
Zoey, the Yorkie poo with wild hair and a big heart, actually belongs to my mother-in-law. When Zoey comes for a visit, she often stays for a week or two. She loves to come to stay with us. She literally goes nuts, jumping in the air and spinning in circles when my husband picks her up. She'd qualify as the grandmother of the group, having been around the longest.
Then Mollie entered the picture. Mollie is the sweetest little pug/chihuahua mix, adopted by our daughter's boyfriend as a rescue. While we might have thought him a tad bit crazy to take on the responsibilities of a dog while still in college, she has definitely become part of the family. Her chill nature and love of cuddles make her the perfect little companion.
Zoey and Mollie can co-exist by merely ignoring each other if they ever happen to be visiting at the same time. But now a new little bundle of boundless energy has entered the fray.
Meet Luna, our son's birthday present to his wife in early July. Luna, now a twelve-week-old corgi puppy, is a darling little stinker with trademark ears and sharp little teeth. As is the case with all babies, everything ends up in her mouth: sticks, leaves, fingers, and toes. And she's fast. She plays hard and sleeps hard – on her schedule, not yours!
Having three little dogs that visit regularly seems like a win-win to me!
I suspect there will be more "grand puppies" in the future. Our youngest daughter, a die-hard dog lover if there ever was one, has already put in a request for a puppy for her college graduation gift in about four years. A hunting dog will probably also enter the mix at some point.
It hasn't taken the kids long to gain a whole new appreciation of the level of care dogs require. There have already been sleepless nights, hefty vet bills, and worry when one of them is sick. But I don't think there are any regrets.
This afternoon, as we relaxed on the patio at the lake and watched Luna knock a water bottle around, I asked our kids what they like most about dogs. Why do they love dogs so much?
Their responses warmed my heart:
I couldn't argue with a single one of these amazing qualities dogs bring to a relationship.
There is nothing like the uncomplicated love of a dog. Dogs don't care if you are rich or poor, young or old. They sense when you're sad, or scared, or sick. Some dogs are even able to provide invaluable services to humans.
I understand why our kids love their little four-legged family members. I hope they'll all have years of enjoyment out of each other's company.
We are at a season in life where we have more freedom to explore this big, beautiful world, so adding a dog to our household doesn't feel like the right move. But when we need a puppy fix, we don't have to go far. And, of course, we can "puppy sit" on an as-needed basis!
There's nothing quite like having a dog at your feet and in your heart, whether they live in your home on a full-time basis or they come for a visit and stay awhile.
As the saying goes:
If you share your home with a puppy, young or old, show them a little extra love today. They've earned it. Kim
Kimberly Diede Author
Hello everyone and welcome to my blog! My name is Kimberly Diede and I'm a fiction author and family girl. When time permits, I am happiest with a great cup of coffee in one hand and a book in the other. I love to alternate between reading and writing. Winters here can be long, dark and cold. Summers are unpredictable, lovely and always too short. Every season of the year, as in every season of life, is a gift. Let's celebrate it together!