Snapshots from Green Victoria (tedwords) wrote,
Snapshots from Green Victoria

The puppy principle.


One of the things I promised myself: if we ever bought a house, Theo would get the puppy he's always dreamed of getting. He wants a Golden Retriever.

So it should have come as no surprise to Corb when, around Theo's birthday, I started thinking about looking for a puppy. But of course, guess what? It came as a complete surprise and Corb complained that I hadn't given him enough warning.

We are aiming for a rescue animal. And so, to get that in motion, I recently contacted one area rescue organization. Of course, what that meant is that before I was able to get a pick of any potential puppies, they had to check me out first, Make sure I was suitable and house trained. Yesterday, a lovely women with seven (SEVEN!) children came by to visit the house, with her perfectly lovely college-aged son. She took one look at Green Victoria and we passed the test immediately.

"But oh, this lovely hardwood flooring," she groaned. "You are going to have to keep any puppy you get confined to one room. At least until they are done teething."

Teething? The very thought sent a shiver through my soul. I shivered on behalf of the house. And that got me thinking.

I texted Corb: I want to have a family meeting with TJ.
He texted back: About?
Me: The dog. And responsibilities.
Corb: Okay. Just expect a lot of "yes I'll do that." I'm concerned about leaving a dog alone for ten hours a day. How will we handle that?
Me: We may need a dog sitter.
Corb: How expensive? Something TJ can help pay for?
Me: We will look into it. I have this thing called a job which precludes me from researching this in depth all day long.
Corb: Be nice.

That night, when Corb came home from work, he walked right past my kisses and marched upstairs. Grabbed a pad, sprawled out on the bed. Starting scribbling down things. I followed him up, lay on the bed next to him, and waited for him to finish writing. The whole thought of Corb scribbling away while I patiently waiting amused me to no end. I giggled a few times. He looked up and glared. And finally:

"Okay, I want to have this discussion, and I know that I've been kind of grouchy about the whole thing, but I want you to know that I am okay with getting a dog, and I know that we are going to get a dog, so I don't want you to think that this is me trying to talk you out of getting a dog." He stopped and took a deep breath. "But that said, there were things we need to talk over."

"I understand," I said, trying to sound my nicest, because I understood this was a big deal.

And then we talked through his list of concerns. All of them were reasonable, really.

1.) Who takes care of the dog when nobody is home?
Can we get Slacker Chad to do it? Can we get a dog walker. Who pays for the dog walker? Home much does it cost? Can Theo chip in?

2.) Are we buying the dog based on the photo, and not his behavior or personality?
We need to buy a dog based on its personality and what we all like, because Theo is 17 and won't be with us forever. Two years from now, he will be off to college and we will be left with a dog, so if we don't like him, that's going to be a big problem.

3.) I know we have an invisible fence in the yard, but...
Does it work? Where is the collar? What are the fence boundaries? How do we activate it?

4.) The dog is going to have messes. Who takes care of them?
We all have to clean up after the pee and poo. Is Theo prepared to stop what's he is doing in an instant to feed and take the dog out? Even if he's in the middle of playing a video game?

So we talked, for about a half an hour. Then we agreed to talk to Theo, which we did on Wednesday, after supper.

It didn't go well. Theo was tense and worried about his Anatomy test the next day, which he wanted help studying for. So he kind of didn't give the discussion his full attention, which irritated Corb to no end. He kind of yessed us to death.

We agreed to have another discussion about it this week-end. I warned Theo that he'd better be more focused.

Otherwise, this dog thing aint going to happen, no matter what the promise. Is that wrong? I don't think so...I only agreed to make this possible, but if Theo can't agree to be responsible about things, then we have a problem.
Tags: dogs, theo
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