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What my dog has taught me

August 04, 2014

About this time five years ago we started seriously talking about getting a dog. T did not grow up with a dog and couldn't wait. I grew up with a poodle/Pekingese mix named Fluffy who the family got when I was 9 years old, hence the name given to the dog. I loved having a dog in the house and can without a doubt say that I am a dog person. We ended up rescuing our dog Kavalier in November of 2009 and this month my boy turns 7 years old.  In honor of Kav's birthday I thought I would share some of the life lessons he has taught me in the almost 5 years of being a dog mom.

What it means to be responsible for another living thing.

I don't have kids or plan to have kids.  My husband and I are everything to Kavalier. We are his world and he depends on us for everything. You can't continue to live an "all about you" life anymore.

How to eat with gusto.

Kavalier is always happy for meal time and enjoys every last morsel of his food. I often joke to people that if I left an open bag of dog food, you would find Kavalier eating until he got sick. He just loves to eat period.

Show love to those you love always.

Kavalier never misses an opportunity to shower his parents with kisses. We could be gone for a just a few hours and he is still excited to see us return. It can be easy to get busy with life and forget to show love to those we care about. It is nice to get a reminder to not do that.

Accept others as they are.

When we moved up to VA Kavalier suffered from a bout of anxiety due to the move. He was used to his own fenced in yard and our house. To say there are more people packed in a smaller place up here is an understatement. When we would take him on walks at first he would get anxious and make his little whine noises, I sometimes got the "What is wrong with your dog?" looks from other pet owners and I confess it would embarrass me a little. With a little computer research and a visit from a dog trainer, we were able to figure out ways to ease his transition and now he is doing better on walks. Kavalier may never be one of the many dogs up here that shows no emotion when encountering another dog on his walk, but I love him exactly the way he is.

We don't choose the ones we love.

I was initially resistant to the idea of getting a big dog. The idea kind of freaked me out. I was worried how a small skinny girl like myself could handle a big dog.  5 years later, I couldn't imagine life without my 65 lb. lab mix.

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