I may have mentioned before that I have a dog. He is an incredible boy named Boomer whom I rescued from a bad situation over a year ago.
When I got Boomer he was 35 lbs. under weight. He had had only his Rabies shot and none of his other puppy shots. He had been kept in a crate for the majority of twelve weeks, only being let out for a couple of hours a day. I got him in June of 2010, he was just over 6 months old.
My sister found out about him through Facebook and when we went to see him as a family, I wasn’t sure if I was ready for a dog. I’d been struggling with roommate issues in college, I had diagnosed situational clinical depression, and I was commuting from Roanoke home every weekend for my summer Internship. I didn’t know if I could take care of myself and the idea of taking on an animal was overwhelming.
When we got to the house he was let out to meet us, and he ran around the yard and sniffed my dad and mom, stopped by my sister, and I went and sat down on the steps to observe. He came bounding over, threw his paws over both my shoulders and licked my face.
And that was it.
My dad always says a dog chooses you and I have never believed it more then with Boomer. We rescued each other that summer.
We had some learning curves. He couldn’t be left out of his crate because he would chew up EVERYTHING initially. So we’d be forced to crate him if we left the house for an hour or two. It took him until December of 2010 to willing enter the crate and not freak out that we might keep him there.
My dad lost the battle of him sleeping in my bed on night one. He has since taken up complete ownership.
He’s the most gentle and loving dog. He doesn’t bite, he doesn’t get aggressive and he wants to play ALL the time. He has boundless energy so it really helps when he can play with our neighbor’s Rottweiler -Beauregard.
He loves to cuddle almost as much as he loves the toys we bring home for him. And I bring him a lot of toys because they last approximately 2.5 days.
He still has some issues dealing with Chloe (our 11 year old Lhasa Apso) and Nala (our 6 year old Maltese/Toy Poodle/ Jack russell mutt). Chloe rules the house and it’s pretty hilarious to watch a ten pound girl scare the crap out of an 80 pound boxer.
But when they get sick or he gets sick, they all three end up cuddling and watching over each other. And that’s family.
He is still terrified of dark haired women and men raising their hands or voices around him. It took him a while to get used to my dad and our neighbor Zacc and he’s fine with both of them now, loves them dearly in fact.
For our dark haired girl friends, it takes him about 15 minutes to realize they aren’t going to hurt him and then he calms down and stops cowering and gets back to his beautiful, bouncy and loving self. My heart breaks each time it happens, but I think I love him even more each time I see him rebound into his normal self just a little bit quicker then the time before.
Boomer has changed my life in a huge way. I wouldn’t be the woman I am today without that constant force of love and affection and energy. He pulled me out of depression, he gave me purpose and tons of physical activity. He chose me. And I chose him right back.
And it is still the best choice I have ever made.
This Christmas- you can make that decision for your family. You can find your best friend.
Got to: http://www.barkva.org/ and take a look at their adoptable pets.
Yes- there will be chaos and mess and dog hair on your sweater. Trails of kibble will be in your kitchen and if you have a dog like Boomer, the occasional drool on your pant leg. But there will also be love and joy and companionship. There will be moments of hysterical laughter, unbelievable pride, and unmeasurable happiness.
Make the right choice. You won’t regret it. I promise.
-Kerith (& Boomer)