I had a visit here from Eve (link is to just one of her blogs), a new reader. I made a quick visit of her blog and look forward to going back to read more and look at her other blogs. She commented here with a couple things that made me think a little more deeply about some of my own words.
First, dogs .... or cats or any other pets .... and their personalities. As you all know by now, there isn't an animal I've met that I don't like. Well, no, that's not totally true. A few pit bulls that I didn't get close enough to know if I could like them, and a handful of other generic critters fall into that same category. But I love the four-leggers of this world.
As I am watching these new family members in my house and seeing them grow, I'm enjoying seeing their personalities blossom. Each one is special, has endearing qualities, as well as a few strange quirks, and is like no other animal in the world. I love that!
This morning, my ponderings lead me to thinking about their pasts. Most of the pets I have owned had a "history" that I knew. I knew at least the mama-kitty which hung out at my parent's home for years and years, or the neighbor's dog who birthed the puppies I brought home. When I was a child I brought home strays all the time, but since my teens, I've known the pets' stories.
Sam's past I know a little about (puppy mill, then dumped on the street), but there isn't enough to say I understand all of the reasons for his neurosis. Max and Joey have no known history before I met them. I watch them play, and I work with them to make them compliant with household expectations, and I see their sweet personalities, feel their love, see evidence that they have been "housed pets" in the past. And I can't imagine someone not wanting these precious pups in their lives. How could someone have had them in their homes, looked in those eyes, watched them frisk, touched their soft fur .... and not kept them safe? How could they let these beautiful little doggy-souls wander away ... or, worse, throw them away?
I'm still working on the house training, with Max and Sam doing pretty well. Joey is a challenge. He seems to be more stubborn, willing to walk a half mile or to sit at my feet for as much as thirty minutes, holding it in, even when I know he must be about to pop! And, yes, he will walk back in the house once I give up and decide he isn't going to pee, and before I can put him back in the crate .... pee a half-gallon on my carpet! It is exasperating! But I'm not giving up! After all, I've had him here just three weeks, and it will take time. It took time to house train every young puppy I ever had. It is part of the sharing of my life with him, my commitment that I will stick it out and make us both happy and comfortable together. Is that why someone left him, freshly groomed, loving and affectionate, with his little lady, on the street? Did they bring him home expecting him to train himself while they were at work? Did they give up on him when they didn't keep their responsibilities "up to code"?
All three are as sweet, cute, funny as can be and I struggle with the knowledge that other humans have neglected them in whatever ways they did. I'm extremely happy to have them with me .... but embarrassed that they got here as they did.
The second thought is more light and humorous, at least it is for me. Eve commented that I am saving a bundle that might be spent at a gym for exercise by doing my own yard work. And chasing these dogs around, too, I might add!! She speculated about people who pay others to do yard work, then spend more at the gym for exercise. We are a funny lot, aren't we? I guess there is something to be said in favor of having a limited, fixed income! I have no choice but to exercise in the yard, if I want my house to look like a civilized person lives here!
Anyway, I began wondering about that. How many of you pay someone to do something that could be good exercise for you? And do you spend more money going to the gym? Be honest now .... if you indulge yourself in the gym, is there anything that you could be substituting? Just curious, so feed my nosey hunger!!!