The only time I’ve purposely owned a dog was when I graduated from college. My parents bought me a toy something-or-another. Which is what I asked for. Evidently because all of my brain cells must have been used up getting through a Psychology degree. A degree which comes in handy every single day of my life. I like to say that I got a B.A. in B.S.
Anyhoo, this little dog was a pure breed, but the name of his breed escapes me right now. He had a cute little pug like face and was a fluff ball of energy.
And because I embodied the essence of maturity, I named him Max E. Padd. Yes, yes I did. And it was recorded on his paperwork.
I had Max for a couple of years, but I soon learned that apartment living and traveling for work did not make me a very good pet owner. So I gave him up to a loving family through a rescue type dog placement service.
I always wondered if they considered me a neglectful pet owner. Max had to stay outside at my mom’s house when I worked, on a long chain, but always with plenty of food and water. Still. He deserved a better life. Much better than I could have provided at the time.
I never thought I would own another dog after that. And that if I ever did, he or she would be a rescue dog. A way to pay it forward, as it were.
When we adopted Mater, we found out as much as we could about his prior life. Mater is about 15 months old. He is a Vizsla, a breed that is very people centric. They are fiercely loyal and wanting to please. Mater was adopted as a puppy by a family with several children. He came to us crate and potty trained. But that’s about it. His original family “brushed him aside for most of his puppyhood” as the rescue worker put it. I know that she had intimate knowledge of his former life. He spent his days outside alone. And at night he was crated by the back door. Interaction with his family was minimal. He had not been neutered, and came to us with a toe infection and a case of hookworm. Both of which we are treating. And he is about 10 pounds underweight.
His manhood was clipped a few weeks prior to our adopting him. A decision that I’m awfully glad that Fiddledaddy did not have to make.
We’re needing to teaching him all the basics, like walking on a leash for example. But he’s very bright and a fast learner. He’s walking now very well, and Emme has taught him to sit on command.
As I mentioned before, we all begin obedience training on Thursday. Training which is as much for us as it is for Mater.
This is a beautiful dog that only wants to be loved on and cared about. I can tell you that he’s getting all of that and more.
I have to be very careful not to judge his former owners harshly in my own mind, because I know how difficult life can get, and there may be circumstances that we know nothing about. And I am certainly no one fit to cast a stone.
But I do know that from this day forward, a dog named Mater will know what it’s like to be a part of a family that loves him dearly.
I’m pretty sure he’s purring.