Monday, July 25, 2011


We have a new member of the family. He is black and curly and weighs 2.8lbs or 1.4kilos. He is a love and a joy and a challenge all at once.

The story of where he came from and how he got here is one of so much emotion that I had to give the events a good long while to dissipate in my guilty conscience before I tried to set them down. Jasper, our adorable cockapoo, was a fearful, damaged dog. His life path had been strewn with  too much trouble to allow us to bring him to a complete recovery . He was with us for 8 months, and in that time made great amounts of progress, but his dangerous, spontaneous biting habit was one he never conquered. He would get anxious when the kids were running around and bite one as he chased and perhaps herded them into safer play. That was the predictable reaction. The other sort was, as  happened one time too often, to suddenly snarl and chomp. The last time he did this was to a small neighbor girl and it was frightening for all involved. It was time to find him another home.

That was definitely the worst week of the summer. We all loved him so and we were all upset, but none so much as the children. Pierre and I could reason in adult terms; this dog was hurting our children and endangering our family's stability with the constant threat of a liability suit. For the children, Jasper had become a part of our family and we are not the kind of family who abandons one of their number simply because they are a hopeless cause. It was out of a desire to protect the children that we came to our conclusion; try explaining that to them!

A month or so went by and the thought of another dog was present, but I did not intend to do anything about it before a little more time and thought had gone into it, as well perhaps a vacation as a family, sans dog. However, one day I was with Aragorn at the pet/garden store, picking up a jalepeno plant, when our dog trainer spotted us and strode over to greet us. "How are you? I'm so sorry about Jasper, how is everyone doing?" My tough, 13-year old was in tears in 2 minutes. "Come on," says Ben, I have someone you have to meet. I have just the right dog for you, you need to start fresh with a new puppy." "I don't think we're quite ready for that yet..." I began, as I followed him through the store. It's a small, family-owned business and the pups are kept in big cages with cage buddies, not in little boxes in a window. You can ask to see a puppy and hold and play with them. We visited often with the puppies there, as well as the birds and kittens and bunnies..., but there is something special about a puppy. A week and a half earlier, Alienor, 9, and I had lost our hearts to a sweet, black little ball of fur, but knew better than to bring home an unplanned puppy. We played with him for half an hour or so and were so impressed with his sweet-natured self and liveliness.

Here today, Ben, the best dog-trainer in all the world, was holding up a darling little black face that was already familiar to me, urging; "just look at that face. Isn't he cute? How could you not take him home with you?" (Of course he was cute, he was the cutest puppy in the whole world, hadn't we already become besotted of him?) "Nuh-uh, not in the plans for today, leaving this weekend." "I have been training his brother and sister for a week now, they are so smart, they are really great dogs. I think he would be perfect for your family." And Ben does know our family, as he has been visiting us at home for the past 8 months, working with dog no.1.

I countered with, "wouldn't it be dangerous for him in our house with all of the feet? He's so little. How big will he get? 8lbs?! That is really small, good purse dog, if that is what you're after. I was not, or was I? Wasn't our vehicle already full when we went on road trips with five children? Did we really need to add the bulk of a giant dog as well? Is there ever a perfect time to adopt a new dog? (My husband would say; "yes, never." I say life sends us signs sometimes that we would do well to heed. We missed our dog, this one needed a home, we were receiving expert advice, without even seeking it.

So, after bringing the other children to meet him, and being begged from the very bottoms of each one's heart to bring him home, then leading Pierre to the pet store after a pleasant meal on our date night, we adopted our little Tuxy into our home. I am presenting him to you in all his puppiness and not-so-camera-easy, blackness!


  1. Congratulations on welcoming your miniature wolf into your pack. Life with a puppy has lots of challenges but also joys. There isn't much difference between raising kids and dogs. Feeding, watering, discipline and love. With babies it's diapering and with dogs the popper scooper... Stinky either way. Lol have a fun with the fur bundle, I am sure he is loving his forever home.

  2. He is adorable! Oh my goodness. I love curly little dogs. We have had two little poodles in the past one in Guatemala and one here when we first moved to the USA. They are such smart sweet little dogs! I really would love to get another... but right now is not the time to bring another dog into our home!


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