Hi friends! Today is a really special day … as it is Chips’ GOTCHA Day!
It’s been exactly one year since I said YES to being his Momma.
If you’ve followed me since I shared THIS post on Valentine’s Day last year, you’ve likely come to know Chips by now.
He’s silly. He’s spunky. He’s bossy. He’s crazy. He’s a ball of energy.
He’s my little extrovert whereas Fish is my little introvert.
They couldn’t be more opposite but they’ve managed to be cool with being brothers.
What you might not know, though, but may have assumed, is that bringing Chips into the mix has had its share of challenges and, last night, for the first time in a year, I broke down in tears over the pent up frustration and failure I’ve felt at being his Mom, let alone being the Mom of TWO.
You see, Chips is an enthusiast. He doesn’t like to be left out. He’s never met a stranger and, when it comes to other dogs, he expresses his desire to hang out with them through this loud piercing howl. This, naturally, terrifies the owner of the other dogs and, therefore, we are typically shunned, unless the owner can hear me over the noise, reassuring them he’s nice.
So, we have two cute labs that live next door. Chips has met and gone nose to nose with them, engaged in friendly sniffs around the backside, but they don’t usually play together. There’s no reason for this. It’s just the way it is sometimes with neighbors, you know? Everyone’s on different schedules and all that. So, one day, a couple weeks ago, the boys were in our little backyard with the mission of doing their business when Chips notices that his friends are up on the balcony. Well … Chips just went NUTS! He was howling and barking. He army crawled underneath my neighbors fence to try and figure out how to get to them. Chips being all riled up got Fish all riled up, naturally! And, Fish isn’t the friendliest when it comes to other dogs, mind you! So, I went into their yard to get Chips but then Fish is in their yard, too, because I didn’t put him away first. It was just chaos for what seemed like five minutes but was probably only one. This really isn’t a big deal other than I don’t know how to settle them both down when this happens. Chips is just so consumed with wanting them to be downstairs and doesn’t let it go.
So, now, every time we go in the backyard … I have to carry him outside so he won’t bolt under the gate and start jumping up and down, like he’s legitimately on a trampoline, because he thinks they’re always up there. Then, I have to stand in front of the gate while he stares at the balcony to eventually realize they’re not there … then he’ll do his business. For the record, my neighbors could care less that he’s in their yard. They’re literally the NICEST people but I just feel bad that maybe they think Chips is aggressive or something, even though I know they don’t. They’re just lies I tell myself I guess.
The funny thing is, before I moved, this backyard of ours was seen, in my mind, as an oasis compared to what I had to do to take them outside living in an apartment, as I mentioned in THIS post:
“I would LOVE to be able to make myself a cup of coffee in the morning, go downstairs with the boys, let them do their business and play in the yard while I watch over them and maybe read a couple of chapters in a book or read my morning devotional.”
Right now, God is teaching me a lot, let’s just say that.
With all this in mind, last night, I let Fish out in the backyard and I had Chips on his leash in order to keep him from going over into their yard. Fish started barking at something in the direction of my neighbors yard and it caused me to take my eyes off of Chips for TWO seconds and, in that time, Chips made the dive under the fence. So, since I had the leash in my hand, I click the button that locks the leash line and I unlock the gate to go over there. Then, I crouch down to move the leash line from under the gate to in between the fence post and the actual fence in order for me to walk through without any issues. Well, as I’m doing that, but before I can actually get the leash line where it needs to be … Chips pulls me forward causing the gate to hit me so hard in the jaw right before it slammed shut with Chips still on the other side and Fish still barking.
….. and y’all. I lost it …..
I felt SO defeated and SO tired of feeling like I’ll never be able to get him to behave under certain circumstances. I was so tired of feeling like my neighbors always think my dogs are mean or crazy or that I don’t have a handle on them. I was so tired of carrying the load of being their caretaker, trainer and provider all on my own, with no one to split the load with or give me a comforting hug when these frustrating moments happen or help me strategize how to improve their behavior and then tackle it with. I’ve always been extremely independent. I don’t feel lonely often. I’m used to doing a good majority of my home life by myself …. is that tough with two pups and a business to run? Absolutely. But, I always keep going and I’m usually not thinking about the way I wish things were. But I think, last night, was just my breaking point, where all of that subconscious build up of fatigue over doing it all by myself caught up with me.
I’ve always said that my weakness is I care too much. I take everything to heart. I don’t know how to just go with the flow when it comes to emotions and let them roll off my back. For me, the hardest thing in the world is to remind myself that I’m doing the best I can and actually believe it. I’m starting to realize, that when you’ve been single for a good majority of the last decade, being your own cheerleader in everything that you do gets harder and harder. You start thinking of how nice it would be to have someone offer you that sweet emotional support or piece of encouragement or just simply hearing someone say they’re proud of you and know they mean it. And, in the same regard, it’d be nice to share the joy of all the cute moments I experience with Fish and Chips with someone else, as well. I work for myself and by myself most days and I’m a single mom to two dogs, and while it doesn’t compare to children, it is quite a lot to juggle and, if I’m honest, the loneliness is starting to grow.
Anyway, back to my story …
I got them all untangled and back in our yard. I put Fish inside and just sat on the stoop in my backyard with the leash still in my hand and Chips still at the end of it. I could feel some soreness rising up in my left hand from when he pulled me. My jaw was throbbing from the swing of the gate against it and I just sat there and cried so hard. I looked up to find Chips directly in front of me. His sweet little eyes looking intently into mine with his head turned to one side and suddenly other feelings started to surface. I began to feel terrible that he could sense my frustration with him and that it would make him question my deep love for him. Love isn’t conditional, right? So, of course, I wouldn’t get rid of him just because of the challenges we face together. He has the sweetest little heart and has brought me, and Fish, so much joy. It wasn’t long after that that I began to feel comforted and reminded that there will be hard times in this life. They’re inevitable, if not guaranteed! And, I’ll experience them whether I’m single or married, living in an apartment or in a town house with a yard.
“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.” Matthew 7:13-14
Entering in by the narrow gate, the one that is hard, leads to life. If you’re unfamiliar with the Bible, Jesus’ disciple Matthew is recounting the famous ‘Sermon on the Mount’ where Jesus is saying that committing your life to living your life for Him, as a Christian, is not going to be easy. This road is the more difficult one but it gives you a perspective and an experience in this life, and in death, that is impossible for those who choose the wider path to understand.
And, while this verse was certainly not talking about being a dog mom or being single, I do think there’s a reason that this verse came to mind last night amidst my frustration and recent feelings of loneliness.
Simply put, nothing worth having comes easy.
The truth is, I could’ve taken the easy way out and said no to adopting Chips and, truthfully, I almost did. I wasn’t blindly walking into the decision. I knew it was going to be a hard road for awhile taking on two small dogs by myself with an already full load of responsibility on the work front. There was a lot of fear in saying yes to adopting Chips but remembering that verse last night comforted me because it reaffirmed that I made the right decision. I entered in the narrow gate. I’m giving Chips the opportunity to live a life filled with endless love and adoration, as well as structure and discipline, which pups so desperately need, and that he might not have been given otherwise.
I don’t know for certain yet, but I feel like I’ll be reminded of this verse when I finally do find that special someone. If you’re waiting like me, enter in the narrow gate by refusing to settle. Sure, you’ll have nights like I did last night and intermittent feelings of hopelessness. It’s a natural part of waiting. But, entering in the wide gate, and saying yes to any man who shows you love and adoration without truly feeling the same for him, will only lead to destruction and emptiness. So, be strong and be careful. Be honest with yourself and with the other person. Let them go, even if it’s hard, when you know they aren’t meant for you. Remember … nothing worth having comes easy.
“What we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory He will reveal to us later.” Romans 8:18
When we feel weak, I believe God steps in and provides strength on our behalf if we only just ask for it. Last night, I felt so defeated but, in that pain, I truly felt encouraged and, as a Christian, I know exactly where it came from. Remember that, while you don’t have a husband, you aren’t without love and you aren’t without support. It may sound cliche but your cries are heard and your pain is valid. Ask him for help and look to him for guidance, wisdom and direction. He will be there with it all.
“God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day.” Psalm 46:5
“When you go through deep water, I will be with you.” Isaiah 43:2
“Even to your old age and gray hairs
I am he, I am he who will sustain you.
I have made you and I will carry you;
I will sustain you and I will rescue you.” Isaiah 46:4
After our ordeal last night, Chips was cuddled up in a little ball on the couch, on the side of the sectional that extends out where you can essentially lay down, like you’re in bed. So I laid down on my side, facing him, on the sectional with my knees pulled up near my stomach, but I wasn’t touching him. Chips looked at me for a few seconds, then he lazily pulled himself up, came over and cuddled up in front of me, carefully positioning his long dachshund body from my face to my knees. His head was ever so gently resting on my knee and, after he let out a tired little sigh, I got to watch him dose off to sleep. It was the sweetest little gift of a moment. Sure enough, there was life that the hard way through this narrow gate gave me the opportunity to experience.
“What a year it’s been, little one”, I whispered to him, “I hope you always feel the worth I see in you.”
So many of you had questions about my experience with Chips over the past year and, as promised, I’m answering them in this post!
HOW OLD IS FISH AGAIN?
Fish will be turning 9 years young this year!
DID YOU FEEL GUILTY GETTING ANOTHER DOG WHEN FISH HAD BEEN WITH YOU FOR 7 YEARS PRIOR?
Yes. Yes. Yes.
After I said yes, I was pulling out of the driveway with Fish in my friends’ lap and Chips in the kennel in the back seat and I started crying. I almost felt like I was cheating on Fish. He and I had been through so much together in our seven years together: my nursing career, a couple of boyfriends, a move to Colorado and London, not to mention, the death of my mother. He’s been my best little friend through all the best times and all the really tough times and I never wanted him to think that he wasn’t enough so we needed to bring in another. It was also just hard to wrap my mind around how I was going to be able to find enough space in my heart for Chips when Fish takes up SO much of it. I felt a lot of pressure, too, to give Chips all that his previous owners couldn’t … stability, structure, immense amounts of love and attention, etc. [His foster Mom, Kiara, was amazing and so was her mother! They took good care of him after his abandonment, I will say that!] I didn’t want to let him down and, at the same time, didn’t want to hurt Fishs’ feelings.
Needless to say, the ride back up to Jacksonville Beach was a long one, full of racing thoughts and desperate prayers. I needed reassurance that I had made the right decision as doubt was certainly setting in deep.
Kristan, my best friend, met me at my car when I got home to help me carry them both upstairs to my apartment [that I lived in last year]. I sat the kennel down on the ground. Fish was sniffing at the door to the kennel, wagging his tail, and Chips was pawing at it, wanting out. I unlatched the door and Chips BOLTED out. Y’all … THEY RAN ALL OVER THE HOUSE AND PLAYED NONSTOP FOR A SOLID HOUR! They wore each other out and eventually fell asleep on the same little bed, butt to butt.
I don’t know about you but I’d say God responded, with his usual wink, giving me all the comfort and reassurance I needed in that moment.
HAVE YOU HAD ANY BEHAVIORAL CHALLENGES ASSOCIATED WITH RESCUING DOGS? AND IF SO, HOW DID / DO YOU HANDLE IT?
When I first got Fish, he had REALLY bad separation anxiety. Anytime I left him in his kennel, I would come home to find everything in his kennel completely ripped to shreds and his little nose with an pink cut on the top of his nose where he had rubbed it against the crate door trying to get out. My heart was absolutely broken seeing how my absence affected him. I read up on separation anxiety online and took the recommendations that so many had said worked wonders for their dog. I would get fully ready, grab my keys and then … instead of leaving when Fishs’ anxiety would naturally begin … I would sit on the couch with him for 5 or 10 minutes before leaving. Next, I would put him in his kennel and only leave for 5 minutes. I’d stand outside for that amount of time, then come back in put my keys down and do some stuff around the house but not make eye contact with Fish. He would be whining, of course, but they need to learn that you WILL let them out of their kennel when its time. So, after about 3 minutes, I’d let him out and give him lots of love. You’ll want to extend the amount of time away each time you do this practice. While we were working on this, I would do my best to only be gone for short amounts of time. They just need that reassurance that it’s okay for you to leave [by getting fully ready then sitting with them after they clearly know you’re about to leave] and that you’ll come back for them. It takes time but that really worked for Fish. The separation anxiety would flare up ANYTIME we moved to a new place but putting that system back in place until he was settled in his kennel worked like a charm!
Another behavioral challenge I’ve had with Fish is his leash aggression toward dogs, not people. He LOVES other dogs if they’re introduced to him OFF a leash but if we’re on a walk and he sees another dog, he goes nuts and I honestly have never found anything to keep him from this behavior. I’ve brought a little buzzer on walks with me to break his attention and that DOES help but then I think I lost that in the move … great job, Haley! *face palm* So, yeah, if you have any tips – I’m all ears!
Chips has had different behavioral challenges than Fish. One that we’re still working on is HIS separation anxiety. Honestly, Chips never has to be without ANYONE. When he goes to his puppy day care, he’s with all of his puppy friends. When he’s home with me, he has Fish as his companion – even when Mom goes to run errands. So, when he’s put in his kennel by himself, he does NOT know how to be okay with it. So he whines and whines and whines. We’re working on this. Chips can also be extremely stubborn about where he’ll go to the bathroom. He takes his SWEET time to find a place to poo sometimes and I’m like seriously .. we’re going on 22 minutes [in addition to the 12 minute walk I usually take them both on together] .. you HAVE to figure it out!
One behavioral challenge I’ve had with both of them and that I’ve spent a lot of time dealing with and trying to correct is their natural inclination to mark in the house. Fish doesn’t do it anymore but he did when he was younger and it drove me nuts. Chips does it from time to time and I literally have to tell myself to count to ten. Every dog mom knows this frustration. But, I think we all know it to different degrees. Neither of my boys’ were neutered before I got them and they were both between 10 and 18 months of age when they got neutered. My veterinarian warned me that, at those ages, because they’re a little older, they’re more likely to continue to mark for much longer than if they had gotten neutered a little younger. So, that’s been fun, especially when they go outside four times a day and pee PLENTY. I’ve been very diligent about keeping them on a schedule. Chips was, I think, always a little uncertain and nervous about when he’d be taken out so, when I first got him, literally even before my feet would hit the ground, he would jump off the bed and not give me anytime to put my contacts in before he would find a spot to pee. *** YES. I KNOW. It was tough! *** Now, though, he knows our morning routine. Mommy gets up, puts contacts in, goes potty, washes face, brushes teeth, puts decent clothes on for a walk, then we go outside to pee real quick, then breakfast, then long walk. But, I will say, Chips still seems to save a little for a box in my office or a random spot on the carpet in my room from time to time. I’m just trying to be patient and I do my best not to react to it just in case he is doing it for attention. I just clean it up quietly when he & Fish are playing.
With all that said …. these are the only experiences I have with owning dogs. I’ve never owned a dog that I’ve had since it was 8 weeks old from a breeder so I can’t say if that experience is ‘easier’. But, it would be unfortunate if my honest account of taking on the privilege of being a mom to rescue animals discouraged anyone from wanting to do the same. The truth behind behavioral ‘issues’ in rescue dogs is that most of them stem from fear, anxiety and wanting to feel loved & wanted more than it is the fact that they’re ‘bad dogs’. [TAKE NOTE: I’m not discounting the fact that there are animals out there who display aggressive behavior toward humans and that, of course, requires special people to assist in correcting and / or decide what should be done to correct the behavior. That is something people have experienced, of course, but I wouldn’t say aggression is a majority of rescue dogs’ behavioral tendency.] Both of my boys were abandoned by their initial owners who they had grown to LOVE very much, I’m sure. Chips was given away without any regard by his owner for the time they had spent together in his puppy stage. Fish was dropped off in front of a neighborhood gym. Think about what that does to people when they’re little. It stays with them. It becomes a part of them and leaves them feeling so many things. Dogs are smarter than we think so it’s important that you don’t enter into adopting a rescue lightly. It takes WORK and patience and diligence. You can’t give up on them. No matter how frustrating they are. I have absolutely cried my eyes out at how hard it has been sometimes to be their Mom, and especially doing it solo. It’s hard but … it’s also worth it.
HOW DID YOU MANAGE TO TRAIN THEM?
Training requires diligence, consistency and … standing your ground so they know who the boss is! The last part, by the way, is the part I struggle with!
Fish, for the most part, learned all of his commands through repetition and reward. Training Chips has been a bit more challenging. He’s more impatient than Fish and, therefore, is a wiggle worm the SECOND he realizes he could get a treat. Over time, though, he knows he won’t get it until he calms down, sits and listens so patience on our end is key!
Don’t get me wrong! They’re not perfectly trained by any means. They know basic commands but, they’re very much dachshunds … where they know what you’re saying but they don’t care enough to listen or obey the command so, this is something we work on daily.
HOW DID THEY ACT DURING YOUR MOVE BACK IN SEPTEMBER OF LAST YEAR?
They were both a little confused by all the boxes that I was packing up but they weren’t too worried, for whatever reason. Due to Chips’ mischievousness and the fact that I don’t always have someone around to help me corner him when he gets something in his mouth, I decided to board him for a few days after the move to give me just a few days to unpack a little more efficiently. I took Fish to his little day care to play for the day and brought him to the new townhouse that afternoon. Both he and Chips had a lot of fun exploring the new house and figuring it out. It’s a lot more stairs than is good for a dachshund but I help them as much as I can.
ARE THEY NEEDY BEING THAT THEY’RE SMALL DOGS?
Honestly, Fish is the most easygoing pup in the whole world. All he ever wants is to be fed, given treats from time to time and a blanket to sleep under or a body to sleep next to. Chips, on the other hand, is a little more demanding and needy but, I honestly think we’ve made a lot of progress this year. He definitely seems more at peace with where he is and I know he loves and trusts me and feels secure in our home. We are still working on a few things but slow and steady wins the race!
HOW DID FISH HANDLE HAVING CHIPS AROUND IN THE BEGINNING?
I never realized how laid back Fish is until I got Chips. When it was just him, I honestly saw a much bossier side to him but, since getting Chips, he’s almost retreated and let Chips take over the dominant role. I can tell Fish’s feelings get hurt by Chips sometimes when Chips takes whatever toy Fish is playing with … mostly chew bones. But, in the beginning, honestly, Fish was cool, calm and collected about having Chips around. I think he quietly does try to ensure he gets ‘me’ over him getting me sometimes, if that makes sense. I’ll get in bed and Fish is really quick to slip under the covers and roll up in a ball in front of my stomach. That’s his spot and he silently protects it. It’s cute.
HOW DO YOU MANAGE MAKING SURE THEY BOTH FEEL LOVED BY YOU?
This was something I most certainly had to learn with time. When you welcome a new pup into your home, you obviously want to do everything you can to make him feel safe, secure, taken care of and, of course, loved. However, they don’t know you and you don’t know them. It’s a process and it takes time. The quote “nothing worth having comes easy” comes to mind when I think back on this last year of being a Mom to both Fish AND Chips. It has taken me months to understand how Chips tells me something compared to how I’m used to Fish telling me the same thing. Just like people, two different dogs can express the same message in a completely different way. They express and receive love differently, as well. So, what I’ve made sure to focus on is how I know Fish likes to receive love and DO those things as often as I can and to spend as much time with Chips as I can so I know what HIS needs are from me and how HE wants me to show him love.
Fish …. wants PHYSICAL TOUCH and TIME. He wants direct eye contact with me on his level along with as many kisses and scratches as I can muster … which isn’t hard because, I mean, look how adorable he is! He’s such a little lover. If I sat with him under a blanket all day, he would feel the so loved … and we’ve done that many times in our eight years together 🙂 Closeness and physical touch is key.
Chips … wants ACTIVITY [which isn’t an actual love language, according to Gary Chapman, but let’s go with it] and GIFTS. He wants long walks and for me to throw the toy incessantly and chase him around the living room. Once that’s all done, he want me to give him a toy that’s indestructible that he can chew on endlessly right next to me … especially if the toy also has treats associated with it. He’s my little extrovert and he’s a little exhausting for an introverted momma, but it’s brought me so much joy to see how happy he is when I do all of those things with him.
Some other things I am sure to do is to let Chips go to puppy daycare by himself some days so that Chips gets to expend his energy and play, which he loves, and Fish gets to spend quality one-on-one time with me, who he’s been used to having to himself for years. And, then so that Chips get some extra love from Mom and some one-on-one time, I will walk both of them together around the neighborhood. Then, I’ll drop Fish off at home and will walk with Chips for another 20 to 30 minutes because I know he just loves being outside! I’m also looking into a dog park that I might start taking him to from time to time!
HOW DO YOU KEEP THEM FROM GETTING BORED WHEN YOU’RE NOT AT HOME?
They’re little lucky ducks, to be honest! I’m a homebody and don’t leave much, especially since I work from home, but when I do, they hop in their kennel. Fish would probably be okay to leave out. I think his separation anxiety is at bay enough but, due to Chips’ marking and the potential for destruction of my carpet or anything else, I’m just not comfortable enough to let him stay out. Fish LOVES his kennel and Chips likes it if Fish is in there with him.
CHIPS SEEMS TO BE AN ENERGIZER BUNNY. HOW DO YOU HELP HIM GET HIS ENERGY OUT AT HOME?
Whew! This has been something that I’ve spent the last year figuring out. One thing that I’ve done … is come to peace with the fact that I alone cannot be the only thing or person to help Chips get his energy out. I know all you momma’s out there deal with some serious Mom guilt and I hate to compare myself to y’all because I know you deal with so many more things than I do with my puppy children but … I do feel REALLY bad handing Chips off for the day to play somewhere and get his energy out. BUT HE NEEDS IT. So, Chips goes to puppy day care three times a week and, ever since, I have seen the improvement in quite a few of the challenging behavior Chips has displayed since getting him. I’ve noticed less destructible behavior and less pent up frustration and aggression directed at me [aggression = barking, not biting in this instance] due to boredom. So, it’s been really good for him. He’s so happy when I pick him up and after he eats his dinner, goes on a walk with me and plays with Fish for a bit … he snuggles up next to me and sleeps. It’s been one of the best ways to love him because, even though I work from home, I can’t spend all day helping him expend ALL the energy this little guy has. He has Jack Russell in him and omg, he’s like the energizer bunny.
On days when he is home, I am sure to walk him for at least 20 minutes in the morning and 20-25 minutes after dinner. He and Fish play quite a bit and then Chips will occupy himself with THIS toy or another chew toy, like a Nyla bone. He puts himself in a chair and will go to sleep, too, now that he’s comfortable here and knows it’s his home.
It’s been an adventure trying to figure all of this out but every dog is different and this is what I’ve found to work best for Chips. 🙂
DO THEY EVER FIGHT OVER FOOD OR TOYS?
Chips will sometimes get a little mean about a toy that he’s currently obsessed with. I’ve learned to gauge when these little outbursts can / will happen and I immediately take the toy away. He’s never hurt Fish but he’s definitely scared him and made him sad. Sharing is one of the things we’re working with Chips on and he is getting much better than he used to be.
WITH YOUR TRAVELS, HOW DO YOU ENSURE THEY’RE COMFORTABLE WHILE YOU’RE GONE?
So, this took a bit of time to figure out. Obviously, as I’ve shared, Fish and Chips have different needs so I really struggled to find a place where they could both get their needs met. As I said, Fish needs love and comfort and Chips needs fun and activity. I boarded them at their puppy daycare and I just didn’t feel right about continuing to keep them there for long periods of time because, although Chips loves it, I know Fish and he doesn’t want to be outside all day. He wants to be lounging, snuggled up next to someone! A play day once or twice a week for him is fun but more than that is torture. So, my stepmom had always raved about her dog sitter to me and highly recommended her. She told me how her dog sitter runs a small dog sitting company with a few other women that she’s really close with and they only agree to taking care of 3 to 4 dogs at a time, which I LOVE. Fish doesn’t want to be around a bunch of craziness. They also only take care of dogs that are similar in size to their own dogs. So, one of them has labs so she takes the big dogs. Another has a medium size dog, so she takes the medium sized ones. And the other has a small dog, so she gets all the little ones! So, I applied and the boys got matched with a woman named Jaryn, who is literally a God send. Her & her husband are the kindest people on the planet and they literally consider Fish & Chips family. They love having them around. Chips and her dog, Pip, are the same age and have the same energy level so they play ALL the time. Fish and her oldest son, whose a senior in high school, have a sweet bond so he’s either lounging on their couch or snuggled up next to one of them. They get walks and fed healthy treats and I get pictures and videos everyday while I’m gone. I can tell they are being offered the same quality of life that I provide them on a daily basis and that they feel comfortable and happy while they’re there. It’s scary to leave your babies and I always miss them terribly … Jaryn knows … but it’s crazy how comforted I feel knowing they’re with her while I’m away.
My hope with this post, and all of the honesty and vulnerability that lies within these answers, is not to discourage anyone who might want to adopt a pup from a rescue facility. It’s also not to be super negative. It’s just that I think there is enough ‘fluff’ and ‘perfectionism’ being put out there these days on social media. What I want you guys to know is that you’ll always get the truth from me … and, I think being honest about our struggles and hardships is what makes us feel less alone. I’ve committed to being a blogger as well as keeping my integrity and my heart for people intact. Sure, I’ll share pretty pictures on Instagram but I refuse to hide the fact that I’m a real person whose going through life just trying to do the best she can, and although I can’t control how my content is viewed by everyone who comes across it, I hope if you choose to try and get to know me through my posts, you’ll see that my life is not perfect but I’m still choosing to enjoy it!
With all that said, I cannot believe it’s been a year since I adopted Chips! I have to send a HUGE shout out to my assistant, Justine, who gets to love on and experience my life with the boys probably more than any one else! THANK YOU for loving them like your own and for all the help with them 🙂
Last, but certainly not least:
Thank you, Jesus, for these sweet boys. They are both blessings, chock full of lessons, and a true extension of your selfless love. I dread the day you take them from me but will treat every day with them as a gift from you.
Please leave me a comment below and either 1. tell me about your pups and any struggles y’all may have had or 2. let me know if you enjoyed this post that shares a little more insight into my heart, what I go through outside of the blog, etc! I’d love to hear your feedback! xo.
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