My first baby is a dog. His name is Hatteras. And he is awesome. To humanize him, he is 55 years old, and a British gay man. He enjoys the finer things in life, wears a monocle and an ascot. He carries around his own silverware because he would never be caught using plastic cutlery like some sort of peasant, he has STANDARDS.
In 2005, I moved to Little Rock, Arkansas. I was alone. I was on my own. My first adult adventure was in Little Rock, Ar.Kan.Saw. I was 24 and this was not the glamorous LA lifestyle I was supposed to be leading. Nor was it the NYC lifestyle. Heck, I’d even settle for a Dallas lifestyle, but it was middle America, sweltering humidity, mosquitos everywhere, Lameville, USA. It didn’t even have a Verizon store!
Well, for all that Lameville had going for it, I will give it this: the local SPCA knew how to market adoptable pets. The SPCA had an off site location in one of the decrepit malls. I happened to walk in one Saturday morning, I stopped in to take a peek, what’s the harm? And I saw this litter. There were three of them, all looked exactly the same, brown and white markings and bright blue eyes. One had been nominated for pet of the week by the local TV station (because duh, he was beautiful). One was running in figure eights in her crate. And the other, at the time named “Kidman”, was just lounging (a trait he has yet to give up). I took him out of the crate, played with him, or more or less, poked and prodded him, he looked bored, and I thought..this dog is awesome for someone who works eight hours a day. $50 later and a promise to get him fixed, and I was a dog owner. Next stop Petsmart.
If I had an easy baby, I had an even easier dog. He was potty trained in three days. He was crate trained in one. He was able to sleep outside of his crate by 2 weeks. I didn’t have to leave him in his crate past six months. We did everything together. He hung out in a Uhaul as we drove back to VA, he went to the beach, he went on hikes, he played (when he felt like it), he never snuggled unless he was feeling bad (which bothers me but whatever). He is overall a really, really good dog. I’m sure he had down sides (like the time he chewed up the shoes I had JUST BOUGHT). Or his over protective nature which has landed him in doggy quarantine, but overall? He’s such an easy dog.
He’s moved from Little Rock to Norfolk to Alexandria to four houses in Richmond. He’s had 3 dog roommates, and likes his last roommate the best/least. He’s happiest hanging out on his couch and admiring the world. Or stalking. Or maybe he’s super depressed and he stares out the window in hopes that he can escape one day.
Regardless, he is pretty awesome.
Which brings me to this post.
Hatteras and the baby make my heart explode. I don’t know what I did to get so lucky with him, but thank you to the higher powers. When she was just born, he would give everyone who attempted to hold her the once over. He would go into her room and peek at her in the crib to make sure she was okay. One time, she was screaming, and I couldn’t do anything to calm her down. In frustration, I put her on the bed, and he nuzzled up next to her to make her stop. And now that she’s mobile?
He lets her pull on his ears, his tail, his paw, his leg, his butt, she climbs over him, uses him to stand up, puts her face in his fur …and he, takes it. He lets us know when he’s had enough by getting up and moving. If he’s eating and she crawls near his food, he steps aside for her. We try to never let her go near them when they are eating, but sometimes she’s too fast.
Anyway, I don’t know what this post was about. Maybe me just gushing about my dog. Maybe me realizing a house isn’t a house without a pet. Or maybe, it’s just everytime I see Hatteras playing with Anna, my cup runneth over and I just want want to smush his face for being such a good dog. When she comes near, he gets this calm look over his face, and an expression that reads “whatever you want kid, if it makes you happy, I’m happy.”
Tumbleweeds of dog fur, butt scratches, and unnecessary barking aside, Hatteras is my heart dog. There is so much love I have for that 45lb four legged boy, that sometimes I don’t know how to contain it. So I still make him snuggle me. I still bury my face in his neck. I tell him I love him 800 times a day. He’s a good dog. A great dog. A clone worthy dog.
He’s probably sitting at home, looking out of his monocle, sipping some espresso, debating which Bronte sister was the better writer, and cursing me for keeping him in his summer collar.
PS. If you were wondering, he is a corgi mixed with an Aussie. (More like awesome, amirite?)