I grew up with dogs. Ever since I can remember there were at least two dogs running around our back yard in my family house. Unfortunately, after leaving for college, and later while living on my own, I was just never able to get a dog on my own, it was either the matter of space or, of course, money. But I’ve made it my life mission, if I ever had kids; they were going to grow up with a dog.
never the right time
Unfortunately, having a mission doesn’t mean you’re going to easily accomplish it. Luckily, when my boy turned five and we moved into a nice house with a spacious back yard I decided it was time to get a pet. I started doing some research, trying to find what breed would be the best to get when you have a young child in the house but my friends started telling me to check out some shelters and find a dog there. I also read a lot of comments on the Internet how rescue dogs are sometimes much better pets than purebred dogs; so, I decided, why not?
My son’s companion
It wasn’t just about me wanting to have a dog and my belief that my son should grow up with one, it was about teaching my son early on about responsibilities and more importantly loving someone unconditionally. So after a trip to a pet store and setting up the house, we got back from a shelter and we had Tobo with us. The newest member of our family was one and a half years old, he was a mixed breed and he had the most soulful eyes I have ever seen in an animal. He was rescued from the street and wasn’t in the shelter for long. He was a bit cautious and jumpy but was eager to be petted. This little guy needed love and we had plenty to give him. Soon, my little boy and his new friend became inseparable.
Doing everything together
Before actually doing all the necessary preparations before getting a dog and going to pick it up, I had a conversation with my son and I explained to him that having a dog is a serious obligation and he also had to make an effort, help and participate in taking care of our new pet. After five days of Tobo living with us, there was a set routine and I was happy to see that my son took his responsibilities to heart. My son would change his water, give him food, take him for a walk with me even early in the morning when he would rather stay in bed.
I wanted my son to have a new friend but I soon realized that Tobo needed one even more. He got used to our routine fairly quickly and soon I couldn’t speak to my son without looking at his doggie friend as well. I soon noticed that my son would climb into the dog house with Tobo and that Tobo got used to jumping into the bed with my son even though this was a no-no. I was trying to find a solution to this little problem when a friend suggested checking out the teepee selection from Cattywampus and suggested we could make it their ‘common area’. So we made a compromise: bed was for the boy, dog house was for the dog and the teepee was a place where they could hang out together.
Not a single day goes by when I don’t find myself happy that I got my son a dog. My son learned how to take care of someone else, he learned patience, compassion and he learned how to control his emotions better since he didn’t want to scare Tobo. I don’t know if our yellow fur ball would have been adopted or possibly put down, but I do know how much he means to our family and how much he has taught us. And I also know how much he loves us and how much he’s grateful that we took him.
So if you’re wondering whether it’s the right time to get a dog, if you have the means and the time, just do it. It will not only make your life more fulfilled but you will also possibly save a life, and that has no price.
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