|Barked: Fri May 18, '12 1:23pm PST |
|When I was ten, we got our first dog--a border collie, because my dad had grownup with them. My cousins had a sheltie when I was little, and then a succession of shelter mutts. So I grew up with dogs.
When our BC died, my mom wanted, not a tiny dog, but a dog she could pick up and carry if necessary--our BC's last few weeks of life were challenging, my family being on the small side and the dog having been on the large side for a BC. When we set a size limit of "not impossible for Mom or me to pick up and carry if sick", added in friendly, playful disposition, fairly active, and good in a neighborhood with lots of kids, we came up with "cocker spaniel." With the minimal research we knew to do, and the more limited tools available in those pre-internet days, we lucked into a far better breeder than we had "earned" with our research, and got a wonderful puppy who grew up to be a wonderful dog.
After that, insert long interval where my sister chose the dogs, so they were all labs or lab mixes.
This overlapped with a long interval where I was a renter and couldn't have a dog of my own anyway, only cats.
Then comes the happy day, when I've been a home owner for a few years, and I'm watching The Dog Whisperer during its first season, and I'm yelling at the tv because these idiots he's working with have dogs they could be walking, and they're not, and the poor dogs are bored out of their skulls and bouncing off the walls as a result.
When I called my sister and expressed this to her, possibly a little forcefully, she suggested that I should maybe get a dog again.
Huh? My house is very small and has no yard except a tiny, unfencible front patch of grass, and I work full time. Even the smallest and least driven of the dogs I'd had or lived with earlier, the cocker spaniel, would , well, it just wouldn't be fair.
"So, get a small dog."
So I sat down with a couple of dog breed books, made a list of things I wanted in a dog, read the breed descriptions, made a list of possible breeds, and went off to dog shows, where I talked to people who had those breeds.
The dachshund lady nodded and smiled while I described what I was looking for in a dog, right up until I said I had two cats. Then she introduced me to the lady beside her, who had Chinese Cresteds.
I did't realize it immediately, but from that moment on I was Doomed.
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