Monday, October 27, 2008

what was I thinking?

This is Jesse, a six month old Lab pup who is our responsibility to train and socialize until he's old enough to enter service dog training with PADS. We've had him for about 10 days now and it's been ... um ... a challenge. Our introduction to puppy raising came when we had Tazo and Romeo staying with us on different weekends. But like those ads for Big Macs, the real deal is always a little less glossy and impressive than the advertisement (i.e. Romeo and Tazo). Jesse started out in a different puppy-raising home, but they had to withdraw from the program so we suspected he'd be a challenge. But he is certainly a delight as well. What's more fun than a puppy? And now I have a houseful of adolescent boys! But what was I thinking? I've been having serious issues with time management this year so why not add a puppy who needs constant watching (lest we spend next month's grocery budget on replacement shoes) to the mix?

Speaking of adolescent boys, 16 years ago today was the longest day of my life. At 7:32 pm I finally met this big lug. We were both fine, if a little beaten up. And now he has the audacity to have his own life. The nerve.

And because adolescent boys are today's theme, here's this year's jack-o-lantern. I couldn't resist after I saw
this. And with a few days still before the big day check out this and this from Rudy.


Blogger JafaBrit's Art said...

ha ha that pumpkin is GREAT, bet the kids lOVE it.

As for puppies, well we just can't seem to help ourselves sometimes.

27/10/08 5:31 p.m.  
Blogger Deborah Ross said...

Andrea, just look at his little face, the big, soulful eyes, the gorgeous shiny coat.....oh,yeah....the little accidents on the carpet, the chewed up shoes, the whining. But, wow, what a great challenge. How will you ever be able to part with him?
And after living through adolescence with two of my own big lugs, the pumpkin says it all.

27/10/08 5:46 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your pup is growing up, looks like you needed another around.

27/10/08 6:21 p.m.  
Blogger donna said...

We did one of those pumpkins a few years ago and it was a huge hit. The kids loved it.

Two words: crate training. Crate the puppy when you can't watch him, and your life will be much, much better. Baby gates are good, too. Keeps them in one room, preferably with a tile floor. ;^)

27/10/08 7:47 p.m.  
Blogger andrea said...

Jafabrit: I know! I thought this desire to complicate my life might pass with age but...

Deborah: After 10 days I can already see how hard it will be. He was a prince at the Chinese restaurant we went to for dinner tonight so I know he'll make a great dog for someone some day.

Citizen: I understand now why often there will be two sets of kids in the same family -- you know, the older ones and the younger ones? That nurturing instinct can be so strong sometimes.

Donna: I don't know what I'd do without a crate! But I'm trying to minimize it because he's going to be with his person 24/7 one day. Being a service dog trainee he can go anywhere with us fortunately. My husnad likes to take him to the library, grocery store, etc., on Saturdays for his babe magnet qualities! :) Sometimes, when I'm pressed for time or going to the gym, though, it's a lot easier to leave him home, crated, for an hour or two.

27/10/08 7:55 p.m.  
Blogger Michelle said...

First of all, you might have gotten the sympathy vote if you didn't post such an adorable picture of the pup! Secondly, as the mother of a just turned 16 year old boy...they must have somethinginplanted in their heads and at , oh, about 15.5 it activates and they no longer think of you as their parent, they see you as their peer, or rather, they see themselves as YOUR peer. It is a wild ride raising kids!

28/10/08 6:10 a.m.  
Blogger Donn Coppens said...

Cry and you cry alone

Mother Nature designed Puppies to be so cute is so that we forgive them for their transgressions..
unlike for instance mad cows who solicit more of a shoot, shovel, and shutup response.

It is bloody awful that our kids, in spite of our best efforts, eventually turn into OTHER PEOPLE!?

Although don't be surprised if the boys are still living in the basement well into their 30s.

28/10/08 8:30 a.m.  
Blogger Caroline said...

That being able to go with you anywhere aspect makes me jealous!

He certainly looks adorable.

As does your son of course.

The pumpkin looks quite fiendish!

28/10/08 1:39 p.m.  
Blogger dinahmow said...

I'm sure you'll turn Jesse into a "good dog" so then you can come over here and work your magic on the local Labs. Bloody pain in the butt!

Happy birthday to your baby!

Off to school later.

28/10/08 3:16 p.m.  
Blogger andrea said...

Michelle: Hee hee. I'm already becoming *too* attached to the puppy antics and bedroom eyes. Just in time, too, since #1 son is, like you said, my PEER now. :)

Donn: Hmmm -- I haven't had the pleasure of 'judging' cows underneath my roof. Tell us what it's like! Maybe when my boys hit their thirties I'll have to bring a mad cow or two in just to find out (and get my basement back).

Caroline: Two out of three ain't bad.

Dinah: Seems like Labs are either hyper bozos or laid back goofs like this one. There ain't no in between. My guess is that you know a few of the former!

28/10/08 3:46 p.m.  
Blogger tlc illustration said...

Cute babies (both the puppy and the son :-). I refuse to do another puppy - too much like a baby/toddler and I just don't have the patience and energy. Give me adult 'rescue' dogs any time...

Good luck with your self-individuating teen-ager. Mixed experience all around. (Just wait until they *do* leave home. Completely wrenching).

28/10/08 10:30 p.m.  
Blogger Melody said...

My daughter just turned 16 last month and I feel the same way. The audacity............

29/10/08 6:21 a.m.  
Blogger Sheri said...

Jesse is beautiful! What a great thing you are doing training this wonderful dog so he can help someone lead a more normal life! Cheers to you.

BTW your son is beautiful, too! and the jack-o-lantern is a scream.

29/10/08 1:38 p.m.  
Blogger andrea said...

Tara: You know, if it was a dog just for us, I'd do the same. Zappa was an adult rescue.

Melody: What happens when 18 hits I wonder...?

Sheri: Thanks, Sheri. I smile every time I see the jack-o-lantern, too.

29/10/08 4:03 p.m.  
Blogger Hayden said...

Jack-o-lantern is great, and puppy is adorable! Those eyes!

Saw a pic of the link J-o-L (or one like it) in a group with several decidedly drunken J-O-L's. Too funny!

29/10/08 6:08 p.m.  
Blogger Alda said...

Ah. I get it now about the puppy. He's adorable.

As for your 16-year-old, the nerve indeed!! I feel the same way about my 17-year-old who has practically moved away and in with her boyfriend (and his parents).

18/11/08 3:01 p.m.  

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