I love dogs. I have always loved dogs. I got a sweet and crazy dog named "Niki" (so named by my first crush, Craig) when I was 12, much to the upset of my mom, in particular, who was/is deathly afraid, and the secret joy of my dad who adores canines. I rescued Niki and brought her home and Mom didn't have the heart to send her away. She was pretty much full grown when I got her, tho' less than a year old, and had been chained to a small dog house with no attention and little food. The 12-year old that I was, simply wanting a dog but not mature enough to understand the care required, was unable to entirely rehabilitate Niki. She didn't make a very good house pet and spent most of her time outside in a large fenced in yard built by my Dad. She loved the snow, loved rolling in the mud, and when she ran away, which was often, always came home smelling of salt water. She was a big dog, about 80 lbs, and an extreme mutt with some obvious markings of huskie and border collie. Unfortunately she developed extreme anxiety, "nerves" you might say, as she aged, even to the point of injuring herself, and my parents had her euthanized a few years after I left home. I always feel bad when I think of Niki.
Now, my husband wants a dog, sometimes he wants two. His sister had 2 (now 1) gorgeous Golden Retrievers, which he absolutely adored. Bailey is calm and well behaved, stocky, almost white-blonde, never requiring a leash. Casey (RIP) was a fun-loving, squirrel-chasing, eat all her food and Bailey's too, couch-chewing golden-blonde beauty. The hubster lived with these two crazy girls for several years and misses their presence. He is again reminded of his love for Goldens when Christa & Kristen arrive home with their Boone.
On the days when I'm feeling very brave, I think I would love to have a dog too. But I certainly don't want to be one of those people who go out and get a dog for puppy cuteness only to be disappointed when their adult dogs don't suit their expectations. So, my google search of "The right dog for our family" came up with this:
I love it! It's a breed selector on the discovery channel website which asks you 10 questions about your preferences regarding grooming, exercising, energy levels, friendliness, temperature tolerance, etc. My top search result (shamefully, with potential owners who don't exercise much) comes up with 99% match of the Clumber Spaniel - a breed I've never heard of before but who looks shockingly like the canine version of our cat. We also gets lots of other types of spaniels, the St. Bernard and other "Mountain dogs", the Newfoundland, some husky types, bulldogs, the droopy-eyes bassett hound, and the Chinese Crested, to name a few.
And the thing is, we would HAVE to get a big dog. Our cat is 23 lbs for goodness sakes, and it just goes against nature to have a dog in the house smaller than the cat. Although I must admit the image of our cat being the one on the leash and a toy dog in my purse strikes me as hilarious!!!
But we are not ready for a dog. Dogs are a lot of work. Dogs require a lot of time and patience. Dogs require walking. Dogs are like having another child - A child that cannot always go with you on vacation, a child that is difficult to find a babysitter for. I hope one day to be ready to surprise the hubster with a doggie. But not now.
For now, we'll stick with our easy-care, leave at home all day, pet - our kitty!