I have always had cats. I seem to be a cat magnet. They find me and know just how to approach me to be assured they will be taken inside, fed and spoiled.
How, you ask, would a certified cat lover be able to lose her heart to a small, stinky and yappy dog? Let me just say, it was by degrees. You know...Like how you fell in love with your kids, because, let's face it. They stink. They turn your life upside down. They want to eat when you want to sleep, and vice-versa. You have to spend all your money on them and more than that...all your time.
I'll start at the beginning: I was having a day with my younger granddaughter, who is great fun to run away with. Shannon and I had been having an adventure and were at the Sonic, where we had just loaded up on large ice cream shakes. We were headed across the parking lot when two teen girls came walking toward us holding this tiny little black puppy. And my lovely
Shannon said, "Look at the little puppy." She said it in that tone of voice that conveys such intense want and need that the grandparent is forced to respond. Shannon, of course, reached for the puppy and the girl, of course, handed it to her. <sigh!> See where this is going? I called my daughter and described said puppy and she replied, yes to Shannon's request. So when I dropped my granddaughter off, she was with pup.
Very shortly after that, I was with pup. Daughter and family live on several unfenced acres and small pup required frequent walking. Pup was also prone to chew...not on anything specific, but on everything she encountered. After listening to much complaining, I heard the news that they planned to take her to a shelter because she was just too energetic and was wrecking their household. <sigh!>
Let me just say that my daughter is a very smart person and she's known me all of her life. She knows all my hot buttons and how to punch them with great finesse. Yes, I drove out to the boondocks and back, said puppy in tow. I told myself, "Don't get attached. You have a full time job and work long hours. Dogs are not self-sufficient like cats. Just find a nice home for this little beastie. That was the plan.
I shopped for her. We have toys. We have small tennis balls. We have a Frisbee. We have a braided rope toy. I have to take her out in the fenced back yard to potty and for me to give her some exercise (and me as well) I have to throw her toys. She is so small that she trips when retrieving a regular Frisbee. And her energy level is endless. Side note: Her one trick is to fetch. This is because she has learned that if she does not bring the thrown object back and drop it at my feet, I will go inside. No, I do not fetch.
All this time, I kept telling myself, "I'm too old for a dog with this much energy. She needs a family with a six-year old boy to play with her."
The first thing I did was to invest huge wads of cash in small yappy dog. I paid for a year of vet care at Pet Smart which included all her shots and spaying and free visits. That was a chunk of money to invest in a free dog. The vets fell in love with her and so did the very handsome young vet-tech who kept referring to her as my "Little Girl" and telling me stories about his "Little Boy". I swear, Dog People are twice as crazy as Cat People.
It was on one of her visits to Pet Smart that I made a startling discovery. I was leaving Pet Smart one sunny afternoon on my day off with small dog on her leash. A thirty-something daddy was walking across the parking lot with a cute little boy about 6 years of age. My dog went into her adorable act and the little boy fell on his knees to pet her. It was love at first sight. The dad said, "That is the cutest little dog." To which I replied, "Want her?" The dad got down on his knees and was very agreeable to taking her right then and there. This was exactly what I had been praying for. Right in front of me, the very fulfillment of the prayers was manifested.
And then my dog turned and looked up at me with her little beady eyes. Those little beady "I love you" eyes.
Oh my God!!! I LOVE HER! I gave myself a pep talk about how this was the perfect opportunity to rid myself of this little pest forever...but she gazed up at me with such love and trust, and furious tail-wagging. I took a deep breath and picked up MY dog before wishing the man and his son good luck in finding a suitable pet. I got in the car and just held her for a long time before starting it up and driving us home.