Puppies: wet noses, sweet puppy breath, soft fluffy fur.
Or is it Puppies: Razor sharp teeth, tiny chew machines, noise makers at 3am....
Twelve years ago - when my dog was 2, I said we would never get a puppy again. If we were going to get another dog, I wanted one that was house trained, over the chewing stage and that slept through the night. Fast forward twelve years, 2 dogs and 2 kids later and we foster fail with an adorable 10 week old puppy. Don't get me wrong, she is the sweetest thing on the planet, but counter surfing, running under my feet while I am cooking and piddling everywhere is just over rated - but maybe so is puppy breath.
With out even realizing it, we lumped her in with the old boys and forgot about training. She went through basic - but that didn't cover the need to pee on throw rugs. She does great on a leash, but she likes to steal shoes. She is almost 6 months now, and we are working on new things with her. She no longer feels the need to steal shoes, but still doesn't make it clear when she needs to go out. She is still a baby. Those of us who haven't had babies in awhile, forget how much time and energy it takes. How much patience is required to raise a well behaved, good natured, trained member of your house. That just because they did great today, tomorrow is a new day and they may fail at something then. We need to remind ourselves that they won't be puppies forever and the zoomies will end, so we should enjoy them while they still happen. As we mourned the loss of our 14+ year old "baby", we should remember he wasn't always an angel either. He ate diapers, throw rugs, pooped in his kennel and woke me up at ungodly hours of the night. And I would give anything to have him here today. But instead, it's time to focus our attention to training this new family member to be with the rest of the pack. She is doing great. She makes mistakes, but that is to be expected. So when I get frustrated, or even a bit angry, at her antics, I remind myself that puppy hood is a stage we have to go through. Just like kids, they grow up and out of some of those behaviors. We made it through the terrible twos and fearsome fours. We can make it through puppyhood.
But, don't get me started on teenagers. Nothing has prepared me for teenagers...Watch for more of Bexley Growing Up coming soon!