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Snuggle Bum

Ohhhhh... He's so adorable! Look at those big puppy dog eyes! He's sooo soft and cuddly... "Come here you little snuggle bum!" (I feel like a little girl... can we keep him, Daddy, can we? can we?) I shake it off and clear my head. Turning to my husband I calmly ask, "Do you really think we're ready for this?"

Here's the thing. We already have the perfect dog. Delbert is well-trained and well-mannered. Only problem is he's getting older. His hip is giving him grief and it's starting to sink in that he isn't going to be around forever. So what better way to train a puppy than to let him learn from the best?

Wally wiggles himself up in my arms and licks my face with a pink and black spotted tongue. Is it bad sign that I've already given him a name? So much for a clear head. In syrupy baby-talk I babble, "Hey, widdo Wally Woo, you wanna come home with us?" I think I'm in love. Dee grins. He's been trying to talk me into getting a Border Collie mix for awhile now. Wally hails from the likes of Border Collie, Blue Healer, and Kelpie--the perfect mix, according to Dee.

So we're off to the pet store for puppy food and chew toys. Better grab a bottle of that enzyme stain remover just in case Wally has an accident. (Wow! Did the clerk ring this up right? No such thing as a free puppy!) The first week or two goes pretty good. I play with him and carry him outside to potty every few hours. He cries whenever I walk out of the room. So endearing!

Okay, where does Wally get all his energy? Someone should seriously harness it. This one puppy could power a small city. Hey! Bring back my shoe! No chewing on the table leg! Did you really just do that on the rug? No! No! No! Yikes, I sound like the mother of preschool triplets. Triplets by the name of Border Collie, Blue Healer and Kelpie. The perfect mix is turning out to be the perfect storm. What was I thinking? It's looking like true love was just a three-week fling. Puuure pupppy-love! The honeymoon is so over.

Delbert, our prototypical-mentor dog, watches in amusement. I can practically see the conversation bubble above his head. "Ha, sucker! You think this crazy mutt can even come close to usurping my position?" I glare at him. If you're so smart, read the conversation bubble above MY head! "You speak dog, why don't YOU discipline him?" As if on cue, Delbert gets up, yawns and stretches, and then bounces over to Wally. He begins to frolic with a fervor that he hasn't shone in years. Really? Who's teaching whom?

When Wally is finally tuckered out he curls up at my feet and looks up with those big puppy dog eyes. This time I'm not fooled. I know his narcisistic split personality-- Sweet Angel vs. Gremlin Demon. He wiggles up and licks my face with a pink and black spotted tongue. Then he looks up at me with those big puppy dog eyes.

"Ohhh, come here you wittow snuggle bum!"