We have been tossing around the idea of a dog for a while now since we now live in a home with such a large yard. Maya desperately misses Winston (her LARGE furry friend) since we moved from my parents place.
For a couple of weeks we have been looking at dogs at local shelters, craigslist and also researching breeds. We knew we needed a dog with a wonderful temperament, great with children, protective of their family and last, but not least, a dog of a larger size. With all of our research, we decided that a Labrador would be the best breed for our family. We also realized, that to be able to train a dog the way we want to, we would need to get a puppy.
This past Tuesday evening, David was looking on craigslist at dogs and stumbled across someone needing to rehome a litter of lab/boxer puppies. They were absolutely adorable and when we researched the breed mix, they were found to be an AWESOME mix. With a hastened deliberation, we decided to go get the dog that evening. We hopped on the Southworth/Fauntleroy ferry and headed over to West Seattle to take a look. It was not easy keeping Maya calm on the ferry ride and in no way did she understand that there was a slight possibility that we wouldn't get a dog. Maybe this wasn't such a great idea after all. Oh, well, no turning back now.
When we got to the place, it was a small apartment in kind of a run down part of West Seattle. The young woman who answered the door was very sweet. Her two year old daughter was on the floor playing with the two puppies. I probably asked her a million questions about the dogs (almost bordering on pester) just to be sure I got every bit of information we needed. The dogs were just too cute to pass up, and we ended up with the bigger male of the two. We also liked him because he had a darker muzzle, like a boxer, a slightly brindled coat, and seemed to have a very laid back personality. Before heading home, we stopped by the Petco nearby and bought him a collar, leash, food, some toys and a crate. The entire way home we discussed names and just couldn't agree on one. About two hours after we got home and had put Maya to bed, the name Dex popped into my head. David and I decided that was a good fit for him and so it stuck.
Well, Dex has already been quite the adventure. We are working on crate training him at night and also house training him (although, he will be an outdoor dog). These tasks have not been easy. Who knew that a puppy would be harder work than a newborn?!? Seriously, I had absolutely NO idea how rough it would be. I am so thankful that we have two little girls who appreciate sleep and sleep like logs all night long because this dog can SCREAM. And yes, I mean scream. He doesn't just whine and whimper, he screams and yelps and makes a few other noises that seem a bit unnatural for a dog (sometimes I think he might be 1/16 cougar or something). The potty training has been rough as well. He pees outside most of the time and we are really diligent at taking him out every two hours. But, for some reason, he still consistently poops in his crate (and yes, we have made the crate small so as to not give him more than just sleeping room). Oh, and I almost forgot, I discovered some seriously huge fleas on him on Thursday. So that day consisted of a thorough dishsoap bath and a treatment of Frontline. So far, so good. No more fleas to report. But, the worst incident of all, drum roll please . . . the poop catastrophe!!!
We had a vet appointment set for 4:30 this afternoon. Along with the puppy, we were supposed to bring a poop sample of his for a parasite test. Well, Dex decided that today would be the day that he would not poop, not once! So, we decided that since he always goes in his crate, why not put him in the crate for a bit in hopes he might release a little something we could take to the vet. Well people, be careful what you wish for, because he went all right, EVERYWHERE! 15 minutes before we have to leave for the vet, Dex is covered from head to tail in his own poop. UGH!! So, to the bathtub he goes. While I'm scrubbing the dog, David is scrubbing the crate. So gross. But, David made it in time to the vet and Dex got a clean bill of health, oh except for the small issue of worms. Ugh again!!! That answers the question to the pooping issue. So, he is now on the mend with meds and hopefully will be better soon.
Overall, I still believe that we made a good decision with the dog. It's going to be a long couple of weeks, but in the end we will hopefully have a wonderful, lifelong family dog. Til' then, we will just have to be patient and allow Dex to live through all of his antics by showing this adorable face:
Come on, who could be mad at that face.