Nobody Likes Puppies
Posted at 04:07PM - Comments: (16)
Everyone who knows me well knows my running gag about puppies. When I see an adorable roly poly irresistible puppy, I say scathingly, “Oh, a puppy. I hate puppies. Who likes puppies? Nobody.”
Of course, by the time my final line is delivered, I’m mauling the puppy affectionately. I actually love puppies. Who wouldn’t? The breath, the paws, the widdle noses?
But neither do I want one. Maybe ever. And a recent puppy-sitting stint, for all of two or three hours, stiffened my resolve. I promised my fellow shelter-volunteer and friend that I would care for her foster-pup, a four-month-old brother to the older, adolescent pup I’m fostering, while she ran some errands the other day -- and I was exhausted by the time she came back. The foster pups are Cattle Dog-mixes, and the little one was super energetic and barky (the one I’m fostering is much more shy and withdrawn, i.e., quiet!). He barked at Tito, the growly Chihuahua; he barked at a Blue Jay, squawking outside; he barked at the microwave’s “finished” tone; he barked at Otto, who was as unamused as me. I kept offering him toys to chew – in order to fill that barky little mouth, but then the toy would roll under the couch and he’d bark at that.
He also wanted to chew everything in sight. My office is dog-friendly – but not puppy-proofed. I’ve got power cords, important mail, cardboard boxes full of products . . . just oodles of things I don’t want chewed, all over my office. The adult dogs are happy with chews and dog toys; puppies have to put their mouths on everything.
And then there is the potty-training anxiety. Does he have to go? Why did he just get up? Let’s go outside, everyone, even though we all just got settled down again. Let’s go outside and bark at the birds and not potty, because it turns out we’re in need of relief of boredom, not needing relief from a full bladder. How do you get anything done?
Puppies have their place, and of course, they grow into dogs and I love them. But I’m very happy with my adult dogs – and even the wild adolescents. My puppy days are well behind me.
How about you? Is your next dog going to be a puppy?