Our Puppy

I didn't want him. No way, no how, Nope!

Returning from a golf trip with some friends in spring 2005 I met my family at a local restaurant where they were attending a family gathering. Quietly my wife handed me a copy of The Daily Jeffersonian, the newspaper in Cambridge, Ohio her Dad's hometown.

"Look what my Dad found in the paper," Netter said.

An ad was circled for Springer Spaniel puppies for $75.00.

I handed the paper back with this simple reply - "No."

I didn't want a dog. We'd just lost Coe Marie, the first dog we'd had as a family, and the last of three dogs and a cat that we had shared our lives with. Losing Coe was particularly difficult and I didn't want to deal with that heartache ever again.

My three lovely ladies looked at me with sad, but expectant eyes.

"No," I repeated.

Two days later we went to dinner. Netter again brought the newspaper along. The girls all promised me emphatically, "You won't have to do anything Daddy / Honey. We'll train him and walk him and take care of him..." As Netter was involved in this promise I started to re-think things a little.

"Okay," I said "call the guy and see if he has any left." Pure-bread Springers at that price - I figured I was pretty safe. There couldn't possibly be any left right?

Wrong! There was one male puppy left.

I never really liked boy dogs. We had a boy mutt when I was little. He once raised his leg on a neighbor – nice. He also bit me which is why we got rid of him. Plus, well, you can’t rub boy dogs’ bellies you know. It’s just awkward.

But this wasn’t my dog was it? “Okay,” I said “we’ll go take a look.”

The farm was in Newcomerstown at the top of the steepest hill I had ever driven up. You know how you feel in the rollercoaster on the way up the first hill? That was this driveway.

We went to the front of the farmhouse and knocked on the door. The man who answered the door asked us to wait a moment. After a few seconds had passed the door opened again, and the cutest puppy I had ever seen walked toward us, very close to his mother.

My ladies were all beside themselves. “Daddy he’s so cute! Please can we get him.”

I quizzed the man about the price. In short, he had rescued the mother from a neighbor who was abusing her. He couldn’t very well tell the neighbor he was taking the dog and ask for her registration papers, and he wasn’t really interested in the dog beyond saving her and giving her a good home. Every so often she had a litter and as he couldn’t provide documentation he sold them for a few dollars to cover the cost of feeding them and initial veterinary care.

This was fine. We had no intention of registering the dog. We only wanted him as a pet.

I paid the man, we made our way back to the car and started on the giant rollercoaster ride with our brand new puppy.


Cat said...

Cute puppy! Congratulations!