Saturday, January 5, 2013

Dog Lady

I realized last week that I'm "that guy girl".  I've turned into this person rather quickly and I'm not ashamed.  I'm the canine version of the cat lady.  Not because I have a million dogs hanging out on my front porch and in my laundry shoot, but because I'm utterly and completely obsessed with my dog.

The realization came when pictures were posted of me on facebook. All of them shown here.  Can you see the common theme?

I'm holding my child dog in all of them.  Not because the photographer shouted, "Pick her up!" But because I'm obsessed with my dog.

If you've ever met my dog, you will know she's amazing.  I've had multiple people tell me that she is literally the best dog they've ever known, and I assure you they weren't just telling me this to get on Lola's my good side.

First off, I want to say I may have become obsessed because my biological clock is ticking extremely loud right now and my motherly instincts are in full swing. That and the fact that I was DEATHLY afraid of dogs from age 6-18.  My fear of dogs has come back, but in a completely different way.  Now instead of being afraid that the dog is going to bite/attack me, I'm afraid that the dog is going to attack/kill Lola.   I have nightmares about this scenario.  I have actually stopped walking Lola around my neighborhood because of this fear. (I actually did have a german shepherd sprint from her yard to across the street and tried to attack Lola. But Lola used her best juke moves and avoided her neck being eaten up. That and the fact that she jumped in my arms. See, the constant holding has come in handy for us.)   And if I walk her on the beautiful levee bypass, I'm constantly looking around for dogs to make sure they're on a leach and that their owner has a firm hold. (which surprisingly a lot of people think their dogs are too good for leashes. me included)

People with human children know their child's every noise, body language and personality better than anyone.  Dogs are no different.  I can read my dog's face and body language to a tee. I know the look she gives me when she has to pee. I know the look when she wants a biscuit.  I know her "I love you so much Mom" face.  I know that after she takes a drink of water within 30 seconds, she'll cough...twice.  I know that when she wakes up, she goes to my side of the bed and rests her head on the bed and as soon as I open my eyes, she'll start wagging her tail in delight that I'm awake.  What I didn't know, is that a dog could turn me into a mothering worry wart.  I guess I know how I'll be someday when I have a human child.

I worry that she's going to choke on rawhides.
I now worry that she needs her anal glands squeezed because she's been chasing her tail a little more than normal.  (which we found out did need to happen, gross as it is.)

See, I told you I'm THAT GUY.

But Lola has to take some responsibility in this too, because if she wasn't the way she was I wouldn't have to be such a worry wart.   If she wasn't so darn human like, I wouldn't be in this frame of mind.

As all dogs do, she has her way of communicating to us.  In the morning, she wakes us up by shaking off and flapping her ears back and forth.  If we don't wake up right after she does it the first time, she'll do it again to let us know she's ready to go out and empty the blad.
She is a major nudger. She will rest her head on your lap for a few minutes just waiting for you to acknowledge her.  She is super sweet.  She loves being right next to me. So much so, that when she lays down, she prefers to be touching me with either her head or her paw.  I swear its because she likes to feel my heartbeat.  See, told you.

I know I'm not alone, because I know plenty of dog obsessed people.  They baby talk their dogs, just as I do.  They give them birthday and Christmas gifts.  They let them lick their faces.  They let them sleep with them in their bed (we don't normally do this, but it occassionaly does happen).  They give them human food.  They leave the TV on when they leave, or in my parents' case, the Christian radio station on. Because you know Miller loves the calming voices. :)  

Speaking of Miller, he's the reason for me morphing from a cat person to a dog person.  Like I revealed earlier, I was deathly afraid of dogs when I was 6.  I was attacked by a neighbor's black lab.  He was a mean ol dog, and I was an innocent girl holding a jump rope.  I was forever changed.  That is until we rescued Miller from the free box at Albertson's.  I was 18 and home for Thanksgiving break from college.  My brother and I were going to the store to get beer I think, or so the story goes.  We were headed back to the car and I turn around and Zach is holding the cutest fur ball I've ever seen.  He barfed on me twice on the way home, and his breath smelled sooo bad.  After going through "beer" names, we decided Miller was the perfect name for this "champagne of dogs".   My mom immediately said we needed to take him back because Zach lived in a tiny apartment in Pullman that didn't allow dogs.  My dad tried to convince my mom that Miller wasn't going to get very big, but anyone that saw his giant paws knew differently.  Zach soon realized he couldn't take care of Miller as much as Miller deserved, so he went on a short "stay" with my parents.  That stay has now lasted 12 years.  You thought I was the youngest Broyles child?  Nope.  Miller has officially taken over that title.  He has a lot of "issues" including being allergic to....wait for it.....GRASS. He also has a little OCD/Anxiety, so he wears a T-shirt whenever we leave him in the house (because we can't stick him in the yard because of his allergies).  But through all the medicine, special food and special attention this guy needs, he has healed me of my debilitating fear.  I can now trust dogs again and not climb up the nearest tall person whenever I see one. (not joking)  He has also made me realize that border collies are the way to go.  They are loyal, sweet, and very smart breeds. 

Miller Boy in his T-shirt.  Soooo stinkin cute.


They really do love being around each other. 

Best buds

Hilarious. She loves to lay like this. 
But this was right after we got this bed. 

There you have it.  The first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem.  So I guess I'm not quite in recovery yet. I want to be "that girl".  And Lola certainly loves that girl. 

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