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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May. 6, 2010
    Posts
    90

    Smile A Family's Best Friend? (how our pets help/hurt relationships)

    http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/201...0322-pets.html

    Some very cute photos with some very funny (and familiar) stories, talking about the tensions pets have caused and relieved in families.

    Personally, I'm pretty sure my family would kill eachother if we didn't have a dog. After our first golde died at the age of 11 when I was in 3rd grade, every member of my family became so stressed out and unhappy that we ended up bringing our new golden puppy home four months earlier than anticipated. Many people joke that "My mom loves the dog more than me" but this was often a serious concern throughout my childhood. In our family christmas photos Henry takes front and center, he is the only family member who is hugged and given treats within minutes of destroying a new $100 pair of gloves, when everyone else is 'in the doghouse' we publicly remind Henry what a GOOD boy HE is, and that he is our FAVORITE family member, hahah!
    The tag on his collar reads "My name is Henry ___ ___, and I own the ____ Family..." I can't imagine living for any extended period of time without a dog, and I know I will mourn Henry's death more than that of some friends and family.

    How have dogs/cats found a place in your family?
    Last edited by rumblepony; Apr. 19, 2011 at 10:15 PM.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar. 11, 2004
    Location
    Collegeville, PA
    Posts
    3,250

    Default

    We got our first dog when my mom agreed to take her brother's basset hound puppy when his wife-to-be told him he had to choose. My dad came back from my uncle's bachelor party and the first thing that dog did was run straight into our house and through our screen door in the process. She was ALWAYS a pain in the butt because we had NO idea how to train her. She howled when she wanted to go out then howled once she was outside....and she KNEW if your hand slipped 1 degree and her rope outside didn't clip. I've never seen a basset hound run as fast as she did when she got away. She had us trained reallllllly well. It went a little something like this - she'd bolt under the neighbor's deck and hide just out of reach. We'd go to our fridge and grab the pound of deli ham or cheese that my mom had just bought that week. Lure her out with said deli meat until we could grab her collar and drag her home. She got smart enough that she could grab the deli meat and scoot just out of reach. Sometimes it took the entire pound until we could grab her.
    But, she put up with my sister and I doing all sorts of crazy things with her and never put a paw wrong around us.
    This was me and Josie:
    http://a3.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphot..._2829989_n.jpg
    When Josie was getting older, we decided to add another dog in the mix. I forget how we came to the decision to adopt a Seeing Eye dog, but we put ourselves on the waiting list. Eva failed out of the program during her final evaluation when she wouldn't leave the curb and cross the road. She was supposed to be my dog, or at least I was the one who primarily took care of her in the beginning. Slowly, eventually, she became my mother's dog. My mother was NOT a dog person before her. But she was the perfect dog. She loved to fetch but once she had a ball she would not give it up. She never ONCE stepped outside of our property unless told to do so. And she adored my mom. She was the dog that made my mom love dogs. I really believe that when it was her time, she actually waited until my mom got home from work so that she could pass away in her arms.
    http://a8.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphot...0918_118_n.jpg
    Since Eva was so perfect, we decided a few years after we got her to sign up for another Seeing Eye dog. This time we applied for a german shepherd at the urging of my father. He instantly bonded to me and has been MY dog ever since. He is the most neurotic animal I've ever met and when he was younger he caused SO MANY arguments between my mother and I. Now that he's older, he's calmed down significantly and he and my mother have come to an understanding. She jokes that she won't cry when he passes but I know she'll be upset.
    http://a4.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphot..._6723191_n.jpg
    When my sister was in college she decided that she wanted a puppy to jog with and rescued another golden. Well, needless to say, after that particular summer break the puppy was at our house to stay. She became the new "heart dog" shortly after Eva died. She brought my mom so much happiness in the 4ish years she was with us. Unfortunately, last March in the very early morning, she got away and was struck by a car. I honestly have never seen my mother full of so much sorrow as she was that morning.
    http://a8.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/photo...13907_8005.jpg
    I put her name on the waiting list for the Seeing Eye again but so far no calls. She's now living vicariously through my sister as she raises her 1 yr. old golden.

    Wow, that was really very long. So...the short answer is that dogs have brought every possible emotion into our family. Love, anger, frustration, happiness, sadness, sorrow. And I'm grateful for every second that they've been part of our lives.
    My CANTER cutie Chip and IHSA shows!
    http://www.youtube.com/kheit86



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