A Healthy Dog is a Healthy Family
I have to be honest, when we adopted Butters and Belize I had absolutely no idea how positively these two little woofers would affect my whole family.
At first, it was supposed to be a single dog. My sister and I were kids, and we wanted a pet, and after several “proof of responsibility tasks” our parents set for us, we got the dog. We wanted to rescue a dog from the shelter, because puppy mills were a thing that terrified us.
Seemed like a proper thing to do, and as soon as we got there, we realized that we won’t be going home with just one puppy. I would have taken the whole rescue centre with me, but I made the compromise, and got two mutts of smaller stature. I still encourage people who are thinking of getting a pet to visit a shelter first, maybe there is a little snout there waiting just for you.
We had general knowledge about owning a dog, we knew what we had to do. They went to the vet the very same day, and up until that moment, we didn’t realize how much responsibilities we were actually facing. They required training, constant care and regular visits to the vet, plus a lot of attention and time. I have to admit I was a little bit frightened at first, and worried if having two puppies got us in over our head.
Butters and Belize made a pack of their own, and training them was difficult. They were young, rowdy, and didn’t respect our authority. But there was no going back at this point, so we had a family meeting where we turned “puppy chores” into obligations. Our parents didn’t trust us at first, knowing that I couldn’t be trusted to clean my own room, let alone to clean up after two dogs. Within a week, I had earned that trust, and I had managed to get attention from Butters and Belize. It was my first big success.
Naturally, there were those who worried about the hygiene of our affairs, and they had doubts about how it would affect the health of two young girl. With nothing more than standard check-ups, adequate care and regular shampoo baths, we started to see them as part of the family.
The training wasn’t all about Butters and Belize following the rules, it was also about our parents, well, training us, their children, about how rules are important foundations of success and responsibility.
To achieve results, we had to realize that consistency and dedication actually works. We made a puppy schedule on our pin board, just like in that Beethoven movie, where we included every task a pampered pet needs, and divided them between the two of us, with our parents sometimes helping out. Meals, walks, nap time, playtime, Butters and Belize were so well organized that we didn’t even noticed how their needs organized our lives.
In just two weeks, I got better in shape
Two weeks of walking the dog got me in better shape, no more huffing and puffing up the stairs. I felt a lot more energized and we started organizing trips and picnics… we have never been more active and we were enjoying this new lifestyle. We were worn out earlier in the evening, we went to bed sooner, and that was the most visible accomplishment. Selflessness was also a lesson we learned with our two puppies. Shopping for dog treats and supplies became our favorite shopping, and sweets and candy took second place.
Taking care of these two rascals helped us to take better care of ourselves. As cliché as it sounds, Butters and Belize rescued me as much as I rescued them.
Life’s truly better with a pet. Do you have a pet story to share? Write in the comments below!