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Sunday, December 12, 2010
I took my mother to prison.....
In March of this year I lost my sweet baby girl Abby. Abby was a mutt and the only child I was going to have. And then I received an email from a friend about rescuing puppies. At first I thought, no way...I can't have another puppy so soon. Then I saw Marley. She came home 2 months to the day that Abby went to heaven. I was scared and confused and not sure I had made the correct decision. I found out I am no good living in a house without a puppy. So Marley came home with me. Two weeks AA (after Abby), I took my mother to prison. My local animal shelter pairs with the Humane Society and the local prison and the inmates train the puppies. I thought this was an excellent idea, so I am always one to enjoy shocking people, so I took my mother. (My mother is a very straight-laced, very Christian woman...I have been trying to corrupt her since I was 14.) The moment we arrived at the prison we saw Marley. She was sitting with her trainer looking up at him and smiling. There is nothing sweeter than a puppy smile. We got in the enclosed area and Marley came over to inspect us and immediately sat down on my mother's feet and looked up and smiled at her. There was no more discussion, the only thing left was to donate to the Humane Society and wait for her training to be over.
It was an adjustment I didn't expect. I have always loved puppies. There has been a puppy in my life for every day of my life. Even when I moved away, I had two puppies at my parents house that I considered mine. I can never remember a time growing up that there weren't any puppies, usually we had two. (and just FYI, we had a lot of dachshunds. They are very sweet, but vindictive puppies. Sometimes not so good around kids-my sister can attest to that when one of our beloved babies bit her nose and hung on while she tried to shake him off. I can still see that in my head....*shivering*...just sayin') I honestly didn't think it would be a problem. She was a puppy, I was me....no biggie. And while I do love her and am happy she's here, it was a very hard adjustment.
Abby was the first puppy that was mine. I didn't share her with anyone like I had the other puppies...they were family dogs. I brought Abby home at 9 weeks....I was late. I had had an accident three weeks before I was supposed to pick her up and was on crutches. I was trying to hold off another week but the lady wanted her gone. She was the product of a registered puppy and a non registered puppy, so therefore, worthless to the lady. So I trooped over there on crutches and picked her up. For the next 13 and a half years, we were together every day, every night.....we were a family. She was my kid. And now, here I was with a three year old, the doctor thinks, with an unknown history. How had she ended up at the animal shelter? Had she been mistreated? Abandoned? I didn't ask. I couldn't know. I had to walk out of there and go forward....both of us. She is a very sweet girl. She is very affectionate and she does smile a lot. It's been a learning experience and it's been an enjoyable one. There are things she does that are unique to her that I am surprised by daily. It still feels new and weird sometimes, but we are both better for it. She gets spoiled by her grandparents and loves going to doggie daycare at their place. I get a very loving puppy that makes me smile. I hope in time she forgets whatever happened before and knows only fun and love.
So if you're thinking of getting a puppy, or a kitty cat (I'm not a cat person, but they're okay), please consider rescuing an older puppy from your local shelter or animal society. All puppies are nothing but unadulterated love on four legs. They are wonderfully cute and who doesn't love puppy smell? But the older puppies need to feel the joy of being a puppy with a good family. If you're just going to get a puppy and leave it outside though, then my vote on that is a big fat no. Puppies are meant to be with people, not be stuck outside in the cold and wet....they are family members. If you wouldn't let your kid stay outside in the cold and rain, then puppies shouldn't either.