Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Adventures of a Dog-Mama

Well hello world! I figured you'd heard enough of me for a little while so I took a three-week hiatus from the blogging thing. But now we're back! With all kinds of "new adventures."

Our European Adventure is over. We still dream about Kaiserschmarn and gelato, but we have come to terms with the fact that real life has begun. Robbie started working FULL-TIME (What a big boy I married!) and while on the job-hunt myself, I have taken on a new role in life:


Most of you know that within TWO DAYS of arriving home from our trip, Robbie and I were proud new owners of a little black beauty of a pup.

Now, I know what you're thinking. "Two days!?! Are you guys insane?! Did you put ZERO thought into a huge decision like this?!" While it may look kind of rash, I will tell you, we put LOADS of thought into this. We have been putting loads into this from the first month that we were dating (November 2010) when we'd pass fenced-in pups as we walked down the street, both of us saying at the same time, "I want a dog so bad!" Ever since we got married (July 2012), we've talked about getting one ourselves. However, you can't really leave a puppy all alone for 6 and a half weeks while you go traipsing through Europe, so we waited. So of course, the very day we got home, it was only natural to start researching dog shelters and looking at puppies on ksl, right? Who needs downtime? However, I don't think either of us quite expected to find her so fast.

Meet Nuca. Our little black lab.

She is the most adorable thing, with the sweetest face, and gives the best snuggles. But it turns out, having a dog is a lot of work. Who knew? Our first night with her, we tried to make a diaper for her out of a spare rag and magnet clips (yep, we really thought that would work).

Five seconds later when she got that off, we decided she'd have to sleep in the kennel so she could learn to start controlling her bladder. We put her in the kennel to sleep, set our alarm for every two hours to take her out to go potty, and in the in between time, just laid in bed listening to her cry. It was saddest thing. We even went and laid next to her all night and tried to calm her down. I was so low on sleep those first few days that I felt like the walking dead. Neither of us admitted it until later, but inside our own heads that first night, we both thought to ourselves, "Did we made a mistake? I don't know if we are ready for this kind of responsibility."

And then I remembered that I'm 28. Some of my friends from high school have FOUR kids by now (along with two dogs, a cat, three goldfish, 2 hampsters, etc. etc.), and I am scared of taking care of a puppy. I have come up with a name for this condition that I'm pretty sure Robbie and I both happen to suffer from. FoBaGu or Fear of Being a Grown-up. Can you imagine what this condition is going to do to us when we have children? I mean, if we think puppies are hard we are in for a rude awakening. You can't just stick a baby in a cage if you need to leave for an hour. Right? I'm pretty sure I read that somewhere.

Anyway, back to the pup. She has now adjusted and is doing SO much better! We are head-over-heels crazy about her. In Romanian, Nuca means "nut." And goodness, it is an oh-so-appropriate name for her. This sweet thing loves to do all the following things:
  • Eat grass like it is the last remaining food on earth (while she simultaneously ignores her dog food). 
  • Chew holes in the carpet, while also periodically relieving herself on it. 
  • Attack her leash anytime it is attached to her. 
  • Chase her tail for weirdly long periods of time. It is the funniest thing in the world. 
  • Take naps on the piano pedals (at least once a day).
  • Bark at the empty water bottle that for some reason TERRIFIES her. 
  • Jump on everyone that comes anywhere near her out of pure excitement.
  • "Liz" or laugh/wiz meaning that she gets so excited sometimes that she pees without even realizing it.
  • Lose her balance while standing on her hind legs, resulting in back somersaults all over the place. 
  • Jump with all her might while standing underneath the coffee table. I think she might get a concussion.
  • Drink water from the gutter on every walk despite my attempts to keep her from it.
  • Use those sharp little puppy teeth a lot more often than we would like. 
  • Climb up behind my head when riding in the car so she can ride on my shoulders and chew on my hair.
  • Make friends with the black lab pup a couple houses down named Jake who is TWO DAYS older than her!
  • Snuggle up to our necks and lick the inside of our ears, giving me the only wet-willy I've ever had.

Basically, she is everything we could have hoped for. We love her like crazy and are so happy we made the choice to get her. She is learning SO fast. She is already mostly potty-trained when we're at home. (When we're at someone else's house, we make her wear this adorable diaper that she hates with all the fire within her). She sleeps quietly at night now, and we just get up to take her out every 3-3.5 hours. She is learning "sit" pretty well and walking on a leash is becoming less of an annoyance to her. Our biggest goal right now is to end her puppy biting, but the vet said we should expect a few more months of that. 

Basically she is the greatest and is kind of like our medication for FoBaGu. Little by little, she is teaching us to embrace the grown-up life. :)