02 Jul

New Puppy!

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Yesterday we acquired a puppy, a 12 week or so old standard poodle. I’m allergic to dogs and cats, and after losing one of our dogs and one of our cats, it’s been easier on me to not have as much fur around. So I decreed that our next dog had to be hypoallergenic. Emily pointed out that meant ‘expensive’ and not rescue.

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Since we’ve rescued four animals from the pound, I decided that maybe I’d acquired enough animal karma that it would be nice to try a dog of known breeding (particularly since Fenrir the brown lab/husky turns out to have been not all there in the head, some of which we’ve trained out. This is unlike the very sweet Collie we rescued and rehabilitated who came to us haven been very sweet, but obviously beaten and very nervous about loud voices… she’d cower and hold up a paw).

Emily’d been looking at puppies off and on since our Collie passed, and since our tenth anniversary had come, asked if she’d like a puppy as her gift. She said yes. We went yesterday to look at a couple of puppies left at a local breeder who sells country-wide (who knew?).

I was hoping for a black standard poodle (we already have a brown lab), and I refused to entertain having a white one, as white dogs always look like they’re crying due to the stains on the fur near their eyes, it bugs me. Plus, if we were getting a poodle, I preferred not getting a white one, as that is the color they’re most known for. Most people see a standard poodle that’s not white in a shaggy cut and they’re like ‘what breed is that?’ Certainly that’s when they caught my eye. I always figured they were fancy-cut, white, and odd. Turns out they’re actually great family dogs, don’t shed, are smart, and with a general cut are just teddy-bear like.

So far the puppy has been happy to make friends with Fenrir, and he’s met the cat and the cat is all like ‘whatever.’

He seems to have an amazing personality. The breeder mentioned (maybe a sales pitch, but he seemed genuine) this puppy was his favorite in the bunch. I really liked how quickly he moved from playful to calm and standing near us with a touch. He pays very close attention to what’s going on around him. His sister, who we played with, was way too puppy-hyper by comparison. We were won over.

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I’m looking forward to being able to let this guy into my office to hang out, as he won’t leave me all stuffed up.

Emily proffered some doggy names up to the twins this morning. Marshall, Grover, and Charley. Calli has been insistent that we not name the dog. “I will call him Puppy FOREVER,” she announced last night, and still took the line this morning. Thalia last night said we should call him, “Hand in my mouth!” We asked her why and she said, “Because it’s weird.” I like the vibe.

Ultimately Thalia and Emily settled on Charley.

Yes, that’s a Steinbeck reference. Steinbeck traveled the US with a standard poodle named Charley and wrote a book about it (Travels with Charley).

At some point, when the new puppy does something exasperating, I promise to write a blog post called ‘Travails with Charley.’