I never really wanted a dog.
My daughter, on the other hand, had been asking for a puppy since she could talk and, about a year ago, started accompanying her pleas with pictures of she and I walking a dog (and sometimes multiple dogs).
“It would be good exercise for all of us, Mommy,” she would tell me, waving her drawings in my face.
Yes, she is completely manipulative.
So, after she’d proven herself responsible though more than a year of helping to care for our neighbor’s dog, Jerry and I relented, and, in December, Aidan joined our little family.
Turns out Cera wasn’t quite ready for the responsibility. And I certainly wasn’t, although I should have been. I mean, I’m the one who’s home all the time, so it would make sense that I would do the majority of the feeding and the walking and the picking up of poop.
But, like I said, I didn’t really want a dog. And I became resentful of him.
So, when Jerry and Cera headed to Washington for a week and Aidan decided to pee and poop all over the house and start eating the kids’ toys and the books from bottom shelves and pretty much anything else he could find, I called Jerry and tearfully told him that when they got home, the dog had to go.
I didn’t want to hate the dog. I really didn’t. He made my daughter happy. And there are few things that make me happier than when my daughter’s happy.
But I hated the dog.
And the dog? Well, the dumb dog loved me. Because I was the one who fed him and walked him and picked up his poop. We had a bit of the initial Annie-Sandy relationship going on. You remember, when Annie sang about having nothing to offer Sandy, but he still followed her wherever she went?
Turns out I calmed down before Jerry and Cera got home, and I didn’t make my girl give up her dog.
And, then, sometime over the past few weeks, this happened.
Yep, I started to love the dumb dog.
Maybe it’s because the accidents decreased and now the only poop I clean up is in the yard.
Maybe it’s because we now crate him when we leave the house and thus come home to much less destruction.
Maybe it’s because he’s less aggressive around other dogs since we got him neutered.
Or maybe it’s because I started to accept the increased responsibility like the big girl that I am and just allowed myself to enjoy having a pet that, for some unknown reason, absolutely adores me.