Friday, September 11, 2009
We have a new addition!
For those of you that don’t know we lost our dog Link. Last fall while we were gone to Texas and Madagascar respectively, Link decided to heed the call of the wild. Interestingly, Link came into our lives seven years ago about the time I started asking to have children. Initially Jeff thought he could stave off the ticking of the biological clock by giving me a puppy to look after. Many years and two kids later, Link decided to leave. After a lengthy period of mourning we decided that it was time to get a new dog. This decision also came due in large part to Leif acting like a puppy. He started getting bowls out of the cabinet and asking for his juice to be put on the floor so he could lap it up. The first few times this was cute…then it got plain weird. He began talking about dogs and puppies incessantly. Things got so bad we had to cut him off from watching Clifford.
Danny and Gail Presley, our good friends knew we were looking for a dog. They have quite a menagerie themselves, made up of schnauzers, cows, horses, Australian shepherds, chickens, and a few cats. So, when Gail called me from Anchorage saying she had found us a dog I wasn’t as skeptical as I normally would have been. This is my first dog that someone else has picked out. She said over the phone that her daughter, who works at an animal shelter, had a four month old Australian Shepherd/Border Collie mix female. I asked Jeff what he thought and the next thing I knew we had dog being delivered via Danny’s airplane in a few days time.
As soon as Leif heard we were getting a dog he fell deathly silent and looked down at the floor. His dad didn’t know what to make of this. Leif looked up and had tears in his eyes as he said, “Really?” Then a grin the size of Alaska spread across his face. “That’s awesome!” he exclaimed. This of course made us cry as well.
Then the name game began. Leif wanted to name the dog Clifford when he overheard his daddy talking to Gail on the phone. Gail told us she was red, blonde and white. Leif heard ‘red’ and thought he was getting a big red dog that needed to be named Clifford. It took us a while to explain that our dog was going to be a girl and Clifford was a boy’s name. He then wanted to name the dog, ‘Auden’ after his best friend. It took some convincing but we finally settled on just plain, ‘Red’.
Red ended up being too big to fit in the plane so her arrival was delayed a few days, but when she finally arrived Leif was ecstatic. He brought her in the house and showed her around. After a few minutes of running and chasing, Leif stopped and breathlessly exclaimed to the dog, “Red, I wuuuuv you!”
She is a great dog. Aside from the normal jumping up, she is pretty gentle with the boys. Very smart and attentive…I think she speaks English. When kenneled she initially began to whine, so I told her, “Red, we aren’t going to whine.” She gave one last whimper and then stopped. The other night she began barking so I let her out. She was barking because she heard a new vehicle in the driveway. She stood guard on the front porch while looking out at Jeff in the plow truck. “That is your daddy, no need to bark,” I told her. She immediately settled down and started wagging her tail.
Like adding the perfect garnish to make a dish complete, so is having a dog for a young family. Red is just the garnish we needed to make life pleasant. Not to mention, she makes me feel less outnumbered.