Meet Chloe, the newest member of the our family. She is the most beautiful Chocolate Lab ever! Would you believe from looking at her that we rescued her from the animal shelter? I know, me neither. Chloe is the most calm and gentle dog I have had in a long time. She does not bark (yet), jump, chew, or any other normal behavior not necessarily welcome by dog lovers. I love her soulful eyes. There is a story there that I wish she could tell me.
I was enjoying yet another very lazy Spring Break day. No really, I do mean L-A-Z-Y. You know the kind. The pj’s most of the day, no hair or make up, movie-junkie kind of day. I was scrolling through Facebook (guilty) and came across a posted shared by a friend about dogs in the animal shelter near her. My heart jumped out of my chest. There she was, cute and as sad looking as could be, just begging for someone to love her.
Who could resist such a sweet, gentle soul? Not me. I spent the better part of a day-and-a-half promising my husband that I would not let her destroy the house or have bad manners. We have both been accustomed to ill behaved, destructive pets in the past. Beside, the kids really “need” a dog. Ok, who was I kidding. I really wanted a dog. I have had a dog since I was born. Coco the Chihuahua, Barney the Beagle (don’t laugh), Wishbone the Dachshund (yes, you can giggle now) where part of our family. Once I was out on my own, I ended up with three myself. Ric and Flower, both Shelties, and Miller a Collie. If you have never had long-haired dogs, just let me say they require a ton of daily brushing. I personally prefer short-haired dogs. You still have to brush them, but there are no tangles to deal with or matted hair. 🙂
For that past five years, we’ve had no other pets except for fish. This has actually been pretty freeing, but a home is so lonely without at least one pet. So, off I went yesterday to the shelter. I figured I would go check her out and realize she was too wild and possibly sick. To my surprise, she was beautiful, calm, loving, with those big brown eyes and a wet nose. Her teeth and ears are pristine and she is not jumping all over us. While a little thin, she looks like she has been well taken care of till her recent trek of wandering free. A chocolate lab! Most shelter dogs are a mixed breed. She “looks” like a full lab although only the vet with know for sure. She is less than 40 pounds and two years. Well, needless to say, I just could not leave her there! So, Cailynn and I brought her home to meet the family.
So far she is settling in just fine. She has not made any attempt to jump on the furniture, paw the table at dinner, or anything than just be well behaved. I am sure she is just checking us out. Can she trust us? Will we love her? Are we going to keep her safe and well? Obviously yes. Last night was pretty amazing. We took her for a short walk yesterday and other than wanting to chase a squirrel, she was pleasant on the leash. She went into her kennel at bedtime and uttered not one peep until 5am. She went outside this morning and enjoyed her breakfast with a lot more tail wagging than yesterday.
I think she knows she can trust me. When I sit she sits at my feet. When I move out of her sight, she comes to find me. I love how her head tilts to the side when she is trying to figure us out. I am sure the next few days will be interesting as she learns our house rules. Somehow I do not think she will be too hard to train. I just love her!
If you and your family are considering getting a pet, I strongly encourage you to check out your local shelters first. Most of us love beautiful, full pedigreed dogs from a breeder, but I think it is better to save a life and give the gift of love to an animal that is at a shelter. Maybe you love animals but cannot have a pet full-time. At the very least, donate supplies and / or time to your local shelter. Who knows…maybe you will find your Chloe.
Thanks to my husband, who agreed to welcome a dog into our home and
to Barb, who helped us find Chloe.