I am not a dog person. For most of my life I have contributed this aversion to the canine to an incident that happened when I was young. Honestly, I don’t remember this happening and relay what I remember being told. Apparently, as a toddler strapped in a stroller, a big dog jumped in my face. Not a big deal at all, but over the years that developed into a reason why I might not “like” dogs. All I can chalk it up to is that I’ve never spent a lot of time around them. Fear of the unknown and animals that jump on you.
Enter Justin. My husband loves dogs, has grown up with them as members of his family for most of his life. I didn’t get it, but that was fine. We adopted two cats that we love like children but I could tell that he still had that yearning for a dog. Conversations started to happen, but they never really went anywhere. Dogs are expensive, getting a puppy was important so we could be the ones to train him/her, we officially would be more tied down than ever before, and I still didn’t understand how I would live a daily life with a dog.
Enter Bruno. We were in the midst of one of our more positive dog conversation cycles. “Maybe we should look into it…” I found myself looking at puppy pictures online, they’re cute! Then I heard that the new puppy a family member had adopted needed a new home. He was ours, we knew it. Two days later we had a small black Pit Bull and Labrador mix in our living room, he came equipped with a hyperactive tail, toys, and excitement that bubbled over into pee on my living room floor. It took me less than an hour to fall in love with Bruno. My whole world became about him that day, thinking about keeping him entertained, making sure he doesn’t eat the cats, making sure there are enough trips outside, making sure he’s not eating things that he shouldn’t…my life became a 24-7 Bruno livefeed. I was okay with that, he instantly became a part of our family. I had done a ton of research on pit bull puppies and training, I was nervous to have an aggressive breed in our house but I couldn’t imagine this little guy doing anything dangerous to other animals or people. I’d be lying if I said the first month or so was easy, it was incredibly stressful for me to try and adjust my routine and frame of mind when at home. I’ve known nothing but cats, they just live with you, they are relatively low-maintenance pets. Feed me, pet me, leave me alone. I didn’t understand how to be a dog owner. I’m still learning.
I am still not a dog person. My love for Bruno is so immense and genuine, that I know he was meant to be a part of our lives. I want to cuddle him, protect him, play with him, and provide the best life for him that I can. I’ve slept on the floor for him, to comfort him after surgery, I bring his bed into the kitchen when I work from home so he can sleep at my feet, I work a longer day so I can run home to let him out if he’s got a long day in the crate. He is my dog and I love him just as much as I love our cats but there is a lot of responsibility that comes with being a dog owner. Some don’t take that seriously. We do.
So while I am still not someone that enjoys most other dogs, I love my puppy. Even when he eats my shoes or a purple sharpie pen on our white carpet. The puppy love is strong in the Paff household, my friends.