Ten months ago I decided to add to my growing family and brought home a tiny bundle of joy: a four-month-old Boston Terrier girl named Gizmo (named affectionately after the Gremlin-like sounds she makes while doing just about everything).
What a surprise I was in for. Her first full day with me she was the perfect puppy. She didn’t make a sound, stayed by my side wherever I went, and when it came time to eat dinner she slept peacefully on the couch without so much as a twitch.
That, I found out quickly, was just a façade.
Now I am lucky if she sits still for longer than thirty consecutive seconds. Try getting anything even remotely productive done while running after a puppy chasing a cat, only to turn around and have to run after a cat chasing a puppy. A full night’s sleep is unheard of at my place, and I realize now that I should have bought stock in paper towels and laundry detergent way back when.
But it has certainly been a learning experience, mostly in patience (how does Cesar Milan make it look so easy?) and restraint (there are moments when I could wring her tiny little neck – with love, of course).
She has taught me a lot for a creature unable to speak, and I am only too happy to pass along the top ten things I have learned from my puppy:
1. Clean laundry tastes better when it is neatly folded
2. Walks are most enjoyable at 3am on weekdays
3. Jump at every child you see and when they fall over proceed to lick their face
4. People food tastes better stolen
5. “NO!” really means “yes, please keep chewing on the wall”
6. When you don’t feel like going for a walk, fall over and play dead
7. If it looks like a dirty sock and smells like a dirty sock it probably is a dirty sock, but eat it anyway
8. Never listen to the humans, they just don’t understand
9. Everything has a taste so put every single thing you can in your mouth – especially laptops, furniture, thumbtacks, and the cat’s tail
10. Running around with cat poop in your mouth is the fastest way to incite a fun game of chase
Oh to be a puppy!