HAPPY BARKDAY PUFFY!!
She's going to tell this story as I wasn't even a twinkle in my great great grandmothers eye yet.
It's hard to belive Puffy has made it to 17 years old. I attribute it to bottled water and lots of exercise and love. I thought I'd tell you the story of how Puffy came to live with us.
The youngest, referred here normally as the Idiot Marine, was in the 2nd grade at the time. We had no idea he wanted a dog. For his birthday or anytime. His sister had a wonderful German Shepard at the time and he loved that dog, but he never said he wanted a dog. One day we got a note from his teacher asking us to call her at home. We imagined the worst of course...he's having trouble at school. She wanted to relay what had happened in Chapel at school that morning. The students could submit prayer requests to be shared during Chapel. They normally have 2 or 3, like someones Grandmother was in the hospital or Dad was on a long trip, the kinds of things small children worry about. He had taken the time to write out a request asking God to please let him have a dog for his birthday. She thought we ought to know as this was so out of line with his character of not attracting attention to himself and that we needed to be prepared in case a dog wasn't in his future.
We were petless at the time, and had not planned to add any animals to our home, of any kind, especially a dog. Maybe a hamster if pushed. The Mr. and I talked about it and decided if we got a dog, it had to be small so we could keep it in the house and one that played well with children as we had 2 boys left at home. We wouldn't purchse a pet from a pet store and would maybe ask around to see if anyone had any puppies they raised in their homes. Puppies that have been hand raised are usually more stable. And if nothing fell out of the sky, we'd just not deal with a dog at his time. We weren't actively looking either.
Well, one of the Mr.'s friends knew someone that had 2 cocker-poo puppies for sale. Hand raised in the home, not from a puppy mill. We thought about and said that would work out as I had a cocker poo as a child and she was a wonderful playmate. He went over to check out the 2 cocker-poos and they had another dog there, a 3.5 months old Malti-Poo that belonged to their adult daughter who was over visiting. This pup just fell all over the Mr. and the other 2 had nothing to do with him. He talked the lady into selling him this Malti-Poo puppy. The daughter was ok with it, said she'd rather have one of the cocker-poos as they were not as playful as the Malti-Poo who was wearing her out.
He brought him over to me at work so I could see him. He was double fisted handful of cream colored fluf. You couldn't tell which end was which unless you could see his pink tongue. We took him home and put him in the garage. Then we picked up the kid from school and told him his birthday present was in the garage. When he first say the dog, he goes: 'What's THAT? A CAT? You got me a CAT?'
It took a while to convince him it was a dog. I don't think he knew anyone that had a small dog, much less a fluffy one that was the size of a kitten. Sometime later, he told us about asking God for a dog for his birthday but thought God made a mistake, as he wanted a German Shepard! He asked me if this dog would grown up to be a German Shepard. My response was that sometimes God gives you what you need and can handle at the time, not what you think you want.
He named the dog Wolverine. He would fuss if anyone called him anything else, and we are big on nicknames around here. I called him Poopsie for a while as that is what puppies tend to do. Poopsie oopsie! That morphed into Pooper, then Puffer, then Puff and Puffy. By the time he becames Puffers, he was a grown teenager and really didn't care what we called him.
Puffy was perfect for two rowdy boys. He ran and played constantly, fetch the ball, pull the rope, jump over people, run along side outside and never ran away from the boys. Eventually as the boys got older, they turned to other toys, girls and cars. He then became my dog. He'd run the Mr. out of the bed if he could get away with it. The 4th child married and the 5th, the idiot Marine, went off to fight in Iraq.
After the boys left home, Puffy would go into their room and sniff about looking for them. I put an unwashed t-shirt on the foot of the bed after the Idiot Marine left home and he'd get up there and sleep on it during the day when we were gone. He still has a 6th sense and can tell when someone is close to home. Like 5 miles away close.
We know he won't be with us too much longer. He's very frail, but still has spunk enough to start fights with Bonnie and doesn't back down when he does. That alone will probably cause his demise. But for today, he's still here. Still eats like a chow hound, does his regular rounds and likes to get out for walkies even though he's arthritic. Some people ask us why we don't have him put down as he does have some health issues. Why would I do that as he seems to be enjoying his life? He doesn't appear to be ill or in pain, except for the aged hitch in his giddy-up. Yes, he's smelly. Yes, he has some funky spells, Yes, he's ornery as all get out but I suspect if I should live so long, I would be the same.
So for today Puffy, enjoy your PUPCAKE, lick the icing, eat what you want to all day and be merry! Heck, we may even give you a bowl of your favorite beer tonight.
Happy 17 years with us and we hope you have many more!
Love, Bonnie and Puffers support staff