At this end of this summer our Border Collie, Savannah, passed away. She was born the day after Brian and I got married and we drove 4 hours to pick her up from a breeder (an 11 year old girl -quite cute) who lived out in the boonies. Actually, that was a neat story -but I digress.
Having a 5 year old and a nearly 3 year old, we told ourselves we would wait to get another dog after the kids were old enough to be of assistance (though my main concern was the kids letting the dog out the front door every day.) Well, so much for resolve.
Yeah, I'll admit it. I have been trolling craigslist and our local animal shelter's website looking for a dog. Brian would roll his eyes, shake his head and guffaw a bit. But, hey. This girl likes having a pet around, even if I am holed up in my office most of the day. Dogs are fun. Dogs are nice. They're snuggly and I wanted a snuggle buggle running buddy with four legs.
Last Friday during an afternoon run alone I started getting an ache in my heart. No -phew- it wasn't a heart attack; I felt a hole and a role that only a dog could fill. Galloping home (so maybe I was scuffling...) I resolved to hop in the car and take a peek at the local animal shelter. It is only 3 minutes away, so really I had no excuse NOT to go. Except for Brian. Brian tag teamed and left the house for his run as soon as I arrived. Phooey. I'd taken the kids to the pound once before (they don't accept kids, just to let you know. I tried.) and it wasn't a terrific experience. I was determined though because, gosh darnit, I wanted a furry friend.
Kids loaded, 3 minute drive accomplished the little people and I walked around the first wing of the dog kennels. I recognized a few faces from the website, actually keeping me eye out for one or two in particular. We rounded a bend and a shelter volunteer asked if he could help us.
"Anything you're looking for?"
I wasn't REALLY serious about getting a dog that day, but I did want to look and dream a little.
"Well. A medium sized dog?"
"Huh! A medium sized dog?!" (What, was this an odd request? Certainly came across that way.)
"Yeah, we had a border collie who passed away a few months ago and--"
"Border Collie, huh?! Well, hang on. We've got a Border Collie that just 'came available. Let me get her." The volunteer went into the small dog area and returned with the daintiest Border Collie I'd ever seen. So tiny and a busy ball of energy. But she was cuuuuuuute.
"You can take her around the building to the play areas if you want."
I could bore you with the details (well, MORE details, that is) but the fact is this: I fell in love. Coming thiiiis close to signing the papers without asking Brian and the shelter closing in just a few minutes, I left the shelter to go home and make the wise decision of consulting with the Dude. I didn't last long.
"Honey, I found a dog, she's perfect, she's a Border Collie and she's SOOO cute, she's super sweet and great with the kids -oh, the kids LOVE her and they wanted to take her home, the shelter's closing in a few minutes, so whaddya think? I know we said we'd wait, but she's just so perfect and so sweet and I really, really like her--"
"I knew when I saw the missed call while I was running that you found a dog you wanted and I made up my mind to say yes."
Now that's a good man.
I whisked back to the animal shelter, plonked down the chunk of change and was told, "We're actually running a special. Dogs are just $12 for adoption fees." The regular price is $75. Now, that may not seem like a big deal, but -believe me- it was to me. We had to leave her there with a Tuesday pick up date after she was fixed. Spayed, I guess. I always thought spaying referred to cats only. A hole in my education.
She still doesn't have a name, this precious little Border Collie, a country stray brought in on Dec. 11th. I can't seem to find a name that fits not only her personality but what she means to me. It's not normal, it's not rational, but when I look at this dog and she snuggles up so sweetly, my heart is overwhelmed with love and thankfulness. I tear up, becoming a soggy, wet noodle of emotion. I'm a freakin' Hallmark commercial around this dog.
There's room for error, I'll say it. We've had her at the house for 5 hours, and I'm not saying it's definitely, positively a perfect match. Yet from what I've seen, it's an awesome fit and I have the greatest hope that she will be just what we all needed.
She's curled up at my feet as I type. She waits for me at the foot of the stairs when I up with the kids and she weaves between my legs as I walk, plopping down on my toes when I pause or stop. I've found a buddy and it's filled a spot in my heart to overflowing.
Here's the animal shelter's website: http://pets.wilco.org/
Williamson County Animal Shelter (Texas)