... with small children in the house.
Pro: We can train the dog to behave around children/protect the children.
Con: We have to train the dog to behave around children/protect the children/not eat the children.
Pro: The dog's activity level matches the children's.
Con: The dog's activity level matches the children's.
Pro: The dog is ridiculously cute.
Con: The dog digs holes in my backyard.
Pro: When the dog's not trying to herd the children or lick them to death, she keeps them -- and us -- amused. (Chasing a tail is always funny.)
Con: The dog needs to get up in the middle of the night.
Pro: The dog chews up stuffed animals/small toys that I don't like.
Con: The dog chews up stuffed animals small toys that the kids love.
Pro: The children are learning responsibility.
Con: We have to nag the children to play with/feed/water/not tease the dog.
Pro: The dog potty-trained a helluva lot faster than the toddler.
Con: Though the piss and shit in the house ended pretty quickly, we still are cleaning up puke occasionally -- in addition to changing diapers and wiping butts -- and cleaning poo up from our yard.
Pro: This will all be over soon.
It's like ripping off a bandage, right? All the potty-training, night wakings and temper tantrums will be over with in one fell swoop (that takes a couple years to get through, but whatever. We're being positive here).
When I first took Brucie to the vet, our appointment ended and the vet said, "So, you have two small children and a puppy? You're going to lose 20 pounds and gain a lot of gray hair." I thought it was a rude thing to say -- but that was before I dealt with a straight week of the "crazy hour" with The Boy, The Lad and the dog. All families know the crazy hour; it's the one right before supper. I had figured out how to handle it with two kids. I also know how to handle a puppy. So, in my head, I thought it would be easy to do all three. Reality proved me wrong. I've got it mostly sorted out now -- dog outside for a few minutes with me to pee and play, The Boy inside getting a snack for him and The Lad, dinner at least prepped, a little more TV than I would like -- but it was a long couple weeks before we got there.
One night, covered in dog shit, herding a Lad in muddy, poopy socks and a dog covered in poo and mud and dealing with a whining almost 4-year-old and a husband on the phone who couldn't understand why I needed him to bring home dinner, I seriously considered divorce. (He didn't bring home dinner. He's lucky he survived.) And I still spend a lot more time than I would like shouting things like, "Off! Down! Get up! Lad, GET UP! BRUCIE GET OFF! BOY! Play with the dog!"
But, it's like I told Brucie the other night, some day she's going to be a very good dog.