We bought a dog.
You? You agreed to a dog? You’re not an animal person! Oh God, did the Bavarian not ask you? Are you ok with this?
That’s what people who know me well will think. What some have said.
My reply? Yeah, no, its grand. Sure it is fine. I’m not a dog person, but she’s lovely. She’s so good. Ah no, he asked. We agreed. She’s really well trained. She’s not a pup. No, it is nice. The boys are thrilled. The Bavarian is over the moon, a dream come true.
It’s been a few weeks now since she came to live with us; since she charmed her way in. I almost cried when her owner left. She’s just a few months younger than Number Three. Poor baby, I thought. Her mammy is leaving her with strangers.
The next day, when the house was covered in short black hairs, I wasn’t so sympathetic. I wanted her out. “Animals live outside” I said. “Look at the chickens. You wouldn’t let them into the house, would you?”.
About a week in, I tried to give up on the complaining. It wasn’t easy. Keeping a house clean* with a husband and three children was plenty to keep me going on with. At least the children are getting to an age where they can help with chores. But a dog? She’s not going to sweep up after herself, is she?
*When I say clean, I mean passable. There was never any fear of our house being really and truely clean.
About ten days ago, in true if-you-can’t-beat-em-join-em style, I ordered a new, better vacuum cleaner to suck up all that hair. I’m trying out turning a blind eye to the dog being in the kitchen when I expressly forbid it before her arrival. I’ve insisted on a kennel and it has been built. I tolerate the leg-licking when I get up in the morning. I even find myself taking to her like one of the children “What’s wrong pet?”, “Come here and drink some water”, “Look Papa is home”.
The boys are thrilled. The Bavarian is over the moon, a dream come true.
What it boils down to is that I have a choice.
I can rain on their parade, lay down strict rules that make me the evil to the dog’s good, drive myself mad with trying to keep things as they were.
Or I can have happy children – growing up with a new friend, new responsibilies, wonderful memories – and a husband who has had a lifelong dream come true.
The boys are thrilled. The Bavarian is over the moon, a dream come true. I am learning to like it.