Sunday, October 11, 2009

Meet the Newest Member of the Family

When we moved to this house in the country, three years ago, we promised the boys that we'd get a dog. Of course, at the time, I was expecting YS, so we put it off until after his arrival. After his arrival, life entered a state of chaos we hadn't encountered when we added the second son. Now, we had two small children and a dog seemed beyond what I could manage.

Several weeks ago, while driving to ES's drum lesson, ES began to complain again about our empty promises for a dog. When we arrived to pick ES up, the little boys spotted a woman walking a stunning dog. The boys approached with their typical questions, "Can I pet your dog? Does your dog like kids?"

My, this dog liked kids. As he romped with the boys, the woman and I talked. It was a Wheaton Terrier and the woman was merely walking the dog for its owner. I explained how much my boys have been begging for a dog and how we live out in the country. Just then, the owner walked up, saying "Want him?" The three boys were delirious with excitement. I took down her number and told her I had to check with my husband.

Suprisingly, hubby was willing and told me to call and ask her price. Before I called, I went on-line to look up the dog breed (since I had really had my heart set on a Goldendoodle). Several things gave me pause. It said that Wheaten Terriers tend to be like little kids, full of life and energy and will bolt, unless kept on a leash. Heck, I already have three bolting boys; I figured I don't need a bolting dog as well. I called back and said I didn't think it was going to work out for us.

This past Wednesday, I noticed an ad in our local paper for a 9 month old Goldendoodle (crate-trained, potty-trained, neutered, up-to-date on shots, good with kids). I showed ES and he said, "Dad'll say no."

That evening, I didn't even get a chance to show my husband the ad before he burst in with, "We've got to get these boys a dog! One of our customers came in today with her poodle and it was just adorable."

My husband's family had two poodles while he was growing up. His arguments for a poodle were that they don't shed and are good for individuals with allergies. My argument against poodles has always been that they're so yippish! Plus, his poodle used to scratch me to pieces whenever I tried to get near him (which I must say left me with a less than favorable attitude towards poodles).

I asked if the poodle was for sale. He said no and I whipped out the ad. We were all shocked when he gave the go-ahead to call.

The owner returned my call from St. Louis and said that they have had to drive back and forth to St. Louis a lot lately and with her two kids and the dog, it was getting to be too much. We made arrangements to come view the dog on Friday afternoon.

Meet Harley D. (short for Harley Dogg):

The owner seemed really sad to sell the dog. She threw in the crate and all the supplies she had for an extra $25.

YS loves crawling in the crate and pretending to be locked in. ES loves to actually lock him in.

All three boys are completely in love (and say so, all day long). At this point, we have stuck with the original owner's name for the dog. YS makes me laugh. He keeps saying things like "Is it Charlie? Is it Gnarly?" Then, when I say it's Harley Dogg, he says, "NO, it's Harley D!"

We feel truly blessed. The previous owner did a fabulous job of training the dog. He does tricks. He has a steady, calm disposition. The entire first day, we didn't hear him bark once. On Saturday, he barked when hubby came home from work and also when ES got out the go-kart (he went crazy then).

When we loaded Harley D. and his crate and supplies into the van, the owner was feeling so overwrought that she hugged me. I told her to feel free to come visit him at any time. She did call on Saturday, to see how the dog is doing. I'm very grateful to her for providing us with such a wonderful dog (and for handling that whole puppy stage, which is what would have driven me insane).


cardiogirl said...

I will admit, reading this actually gives me a small amount of hope regarding having a dog.

Doesn't every kid want a dog? Mine are no exception and I just see a dog as another child. But I'd think about it if I knew someone else trained the dog first.

And him doing tricks is a major bonus.

Congratulations on the newest edition!

cardiogirl said...

p.s. I forgot to tell you Harley looks like Sandy from the play "Annie."

Elizabeth A. said...

Harley does look like Sandy.

That's just wonderful. I love my dogs, but they were a major pain in the butt for the first six months. Harley D. looks as if he's settling in pretty well. That's an adorable picture of your children.

Wendy said...

CG - Of course, the expenses may end up feeling like adding another kid (and I can't say I'm looking forward to taking the dog out into the cold in the morning come winter). Still, gotta love it that someone else trained him.

Elizabeth - Ah, you must have more than one. Thanks for saying all my boys (dog included) are adorable.