Girl Meets Dog: How Sweet It Is
Life is sweeter with a dog. You probably already knew this, but I am only now seeing life with a doggie by my side.Two months ago my husband and I adopted a 3-year-old rescue from Thailand. He was insistent, I was hesitant. Thankfully we were matched with perfect pooch and none of my worries have come to pass. In fact, as you can imagine, Tessie is a total joy.
Having Tessie has introduced me to the friendly dog community I had never realized existed. We live by a great, large park, which Tessie and I walk every morning. We’ve met some lovely new people and pups, even though Tessie’s not too fond of other dogs at the moment. We’re working on it, but I feel the need to explain why Tessie is giving another dog the cold shoulder. Inevitably the conversation goes something like:
“I’m sorry, she’s scared of other dogs,” I say.
“Is she a puppy?” he or she asks.
“No, but she’s new to us.”
“Good for you!” or “All she needs is love!” or “Thank you for saving her!”
How’s that for starting the day off on the right foot?At Tessie’s first grooming appointment, I was a mess. I arrived late, and I was surprisingly nervous. This groomer came highly recommended, but it was the first time I was leaving her with a stranger. In true dog community fashion, Merissa from Diamond in the Ruff (who recognized us from the park!) put me at ease. Back at home, I was struck by how quiet the house seemed to be without Tessie. She doesn’t make much noise, but I had the nagging sense of loneliness while I waited to pick her up. No tags chiming around her collar every time she lifts her head. No deep breathing while she naps in her bed. I was so eager to pick her up, I arrived before they called. She did great and smelled even better.
This past weekend my husband and I went to a nature reserve to see the daffodils in bloom. Bringing Tessie turned a walk in the woods into an adventure, and we loved watching her explore a new place. Tessie sat alongside us as we basked in the peaceful daffodil garden, sipping our coffee. If there was a moment that made me feel like a true pet owner, this was it. We took a ton of photos to commemorate the trip, including a great family photo.
Tessie did a bit of exploring during Easter as well. She finally met my family, who all fell in love with her sweet face and disposition. She also met her fur family (three Chihuahuas!), which has helped with her aversion to other dogs. She did great around a full house of new people, including the kiddos. She’s a dream in the car, and slept through the two-hour ride.
The best part of having a dog – hands down – is coming home to that happy face and wagging tail. Tessie does this adorable thing where she nods her head and lets out a faint cry in excitement when we walk through the door. Pure joy. She spends the evenings by our side, curled up in her bed, or if we’re lucky, she joins us on the couch.
I can’t help but feel Tessie completes our family. I am blessed to have lots of love in my life, and I could have lived without Tessie, I guess. But life is just better now that she’s here. Sure, I’m never early to work anymore and I’m covered in dog hair. It’s just a small price to pay for all the sweetness I get from Tessie every day.
Maria Poulos Pimentel is a New Jersey transplant now settled in New England. Maria works in marketing and publicity by day and snuggles with her sweet collie/shepherd/husky Tessie by night. She was a reluctant dog owner at first, but she's quickly learning the ropes and discovering all the joys of doggie parenting. Maria will be sharing more of her adventures in dog love with PawsGo.
Tessie was adopted through Odie’s Place, a small privately run animal rescue program in Massachusetts. Learn more about them here! http://www.odiesplace.org/