Friday, July 24, 2015

Introducing Tucker

I think it has been long enough now that I can do this post. Radar died on April 18th of this year. It was very hard on all of us, but especially Mike and I. Maybe it seems callous or insensitive, but I started searching for dogs and puppies in rescue online almost right away. It helped me to have something to focus on other than my own sadness. A couple of weeks after he died, we went to the local humane society intending to meet two specific puppies. One was in foster care, so we went to the shelter first. There, we met the female puppy we had been interested in. Only we just didn't connect with her. She was cute, but really bouncy, and neither of us (Mike and I, that is) really wanted her.

There were several puppies there, and a couple of them jumped all over the kids the whole time, but there was one we noticed that was a little older, and a lot quieter. Mike and I both got a feeling about him, but I tried to ignore it. He was six months old, and I thought the kids would be more excited about a younger puppy. Besides, we still had to go to the foster home to meet the other puppy we were interested in. So we took an application with us and headed to the foster home. There, we met a truly adorable little puppy.

There he is. Seriously, look at that face. He was very cute and was good with the kids. His foster "mom" said he was her favourite puppy she has ever fostered, and she has had a lot. He was already mostly potty trained, even though he was only 12 weeks old. (He is younger in this picture.) So the kids fell in love with him. All except for Micah. He wanted the quiet, older puppy from the shelter.

So we headed back to the shelter, and I was a basket case. Mike knew what puppy we should get, and it wasn't this little angel pictured above. Cody, Jamie and Lauren all wanted this one. Micah wanted the other, and I wanted them both. I was tortured. How could we leave this little guy behind when there was absolutely nothing wrong with him? I didn't want to admit it to Mike, but I felt the same thing he did about the other one. I knew he was right for us, and I knew God himself was directing us towards him. That may sound dramatic, but sometimes God's voice is very clear, and this was one of those times. 

I was sad because I knew this might be the last dog we would ever get, and for sure it would be the last one we would get when our kids were little and lived at home. I wanted them to have a little puppy. I wanted me to have a little puppy. Radar was four months old when we got him, and not at that cute, fuzzy puppy stage. I knew it would be a pain with potty training, but I wanted the cute stage. 

In the end, we chose the one from the shelter, though several of us still wanted both puppies. Agreeing on a name between six people was a long and drawn out process and it took at least a week. But we settled on Tucker. Here is a picture of our new family member.

He was terrified when we got him home, and he bonded with me immediately. It turns out, he's really scared of men. He wouldn't let Mike touch him, and it took weeks before he was comfortable with Mike. We were discouraged at first, but eventually it became something of a joke around here. It was like the movie 50 First Dates. Every morning, he would bark and growl when Mike got up, (and again when Mike got home from work) and by bedtime, he was friends with him again. Every day, we repeated the same process. We have had him two and a half months now, and he still barks and sometimes growls at Mike when he gets home, but we just laugh at him. We call him Captain Woof, which is the name Cody wanted to give him. 

Now that he's here, it's clear he is the perfect dog for our family. He is great with the kids, and he is super playful. He fetches, which Cody really wanted, and he doesn't run away, so we can now have him loose on our property with no worries. He is also a water dog, as it turns out, and finds water wherever he can to swim in, or just lay in. Our yard was flooded shortly after we got him, so he had a lot of fun with that. Here's another picture of our boy.

We don't know what kind of dog he is. Lab for sure, most likely shepherd too, and then...? He has brindle on his face and legs, and his tail curls over his back like a husky, so he could have any number of breeds in him. His fur is extremely soft, and he's a big cuddle bug. Also a chicken. He is afraid of everything, but we are working with him on that. He also steals food off the counters...especially butter. He ate half a pound of butter not long after we got him, which induced a terrible thirst. He woke me up at 4 a.m. in his desperation for water. 

He has settled in nicely now, and we couldn't be more happy with him. I have many stories I could tell about him, but this is getting long and I'm late feeding my crew lunch. Just wanted to give this update, seeing it is way overdue.