Thursday, October 9, 2008

Best in Show

When DH and I moved to Charlottesville in the Spring of 2005, I knew we were going to get a dog. We had been living together for almost a year and I was about to embark on a very strenuous first year program at Darden. DH was able to move down to C-ville with me and work from home (which he has done ever since). To keep him company while I was away from home (7 AM - 11 PM most days!) I convinced him that a dog was the way to go.

We knew we wanted a puppy just because we could mold it from the very beginning (he he he). Before we started our search at the C-ville animal shelter, we stopped by a pet store (not one that had dogs for sale) and saw a bunch of dogs outside of it from another town's animal shelter. DH went in to the store to get a crate and I spent time with the puppies. There were two in particular I loved. One was all golden in color and very rambuncious even in the 90 degree weather. The other was a mix of colors but mostly black and was peacefully sleeping in his crate. I picked up the quiet one (named "Bongo") and snuggled with him while DH completed the purchase. After he came out I said, "I want this one!"

As you can see, I got my way :-)

DH was convinced we would find one in the C-ville animal shelter so he made me leave the cute puppy behind and drive off. Well, when we got to the animal shelter they only had one set of puppies who were all spoken for and needed another month before they could be brought home anyway.

I told DH it was fate and we had to get the puppy we saw in front of the pet store. We left a message with the shelter and found out that they were open on Sundays so if he wasn't taken yet we could go the next day and adopt him. I was so worried all night that someone else had adopted him from the pet store! We drove about 40 minutes to the shelter and asked to see Bongo again (the first thing to go would be that name). DH and I walked back to a cage where the dog (soon to be our dog) was with two of his litter mates. There was the male golden puppy and a female on in a similar color. DH immediately wanted to adopt all three but common sense prevailed and we brought our puppy home.

We debated endlessly about what to call him. DH lobbied for Jack Bauer but I really wanted Charlie (after Charlottesville). A little slyly, I said, "Why don't we start with Charlie and see how it goes? We can change it later if we want..." And so, Charlie entered our lives on a hot summer day in June.

If any of you have met our dog, you must admit that he is the best-est dog in the whole wide world. And probably the most spoiled. How, you may ask? Well, let me share.
  • He is very smart. As DH and I like to say, Charlie understands a ton of words but he doesn't listen so good. I taught him how to bring DH his work gloves (for when they wrestle together) in two days when he wanted to play.

  • He likes to lie in weird positions. Charlie has his Playboy pose and his chicken pose (see below).

  • Charlie sleeps on the bed with us every night. Yes, it's true. We have become pet parents. We refer to each other as "Mommy" and "Daddy" when we talk to the dog. We judge other people by how much they love their dog and our dog. We prefer to hang out with people who have dogs so Charlie can play.

  • The best thing in the whole world is coming home from a long day at work and having a very excited dog greet you. It will probably be years before I get that from the baby! Charlie also watches out the window when I leave in the morning and whines. So cute!
  • He loves people, especially kids.

  • He doesn't understand that with DH home every day he is luckier than any other dog in existence. Except for maybe Callie but that's because her mommy is home all day too.

  • Charlie watches out the window to make sure that the neighborhood is safe and barks to alert us when a person is getting too close to the house. Of course, it is the same people walking their dogs every day but he's not that smart.

I realize that once we welcome the baby into our lives Charlie will be "demoted" to dog. But I still believe he will occupy a special place in our lives. After all, he was our first baby. And it only took three weeks to potty train him!!

A few more cute pictures to start your day...


Theresa said...

OMG, we have to get our dogs to meet! I think they might be related! Right down to the sleeping poses!

A. said...

He really is adorable!

Maybe you should have let Jer win on the dog name - you might end up with a baby named Jack Bauer now! You can't win 'em all... (J/K, I firmly believe your vote counts more with the baby, since you're actually incubating it and eventually need to suffer through evicting it from your body).

Natalie said...

you have been a great mom to charlie, it's perfect practice for the baby. Think about it, you had to teach him where to poop, he drools, and he totally depends on you for food. But if you have a baby boy and at three years old I see him lifting his leg instead of using the potty, we're going to have to have a chat.....