The Great Thing About A New Puppy
Dogs are for Life AND for Christmas
There used to be a public information ad in the UK that told everyone that dogs were for life and not for Christmas, as a result, when my kids started talking about getting a new dog, I didn't even think about it. It would have to wait for the New Year. Events, however, took their course. My daughter was relentless in her research, and found a puppy for us. The only problem was that he would come home with us just in time for Christmas.
To me, that seemed wrong. I was overruled. During November we got constant updates and pictures every week after our puppy was born, and then just before Christmas we picked him up and brought him home.
A pure bred puppy is expensive. Ours is a breed known as Greet Pyrenee in the USA, in the UK we call them Pyrrenean Mountain Dogs. In the past we'd had a Newfoundland. Once you've had a truly large dog, it can be difficult to adjust to anything smaller, We explained to the kids that this meant there wouldn't be much money for other presents. They said they didn't care,a and from what I've seen, they were right,
Instead of opening presents we spent Christmas looking after our brand new puppy. Feeding him and caring for him. I saw a side of my children I hadn't seen before, and in comparison to a normal Christmas, this one was simply better.
Almost every present that was opened was something for the dog, a new toy, a lead, a collar, a water fountain, a brush. There was a bin to store his dog food and a jar for dog treats. A puppy playpen to keep him safe and a giant bed which we still can't quite believe will one day be the right size for him. His little legs are still not quite big enough to let him walk up and down stairs, so house training isn't easy, but we knew that in advance, and not once have the children hesitated to take him downstairs and outside, even with the temperature being close to 0F.
Every parent accepts that as their children get older Christmas can be less fun. teenagers retreat to their rooms or don headphones and stare at laptops, even when you're all in the same room. Playing games together can seem forced, television and video games rule the day and if, like us, there is no family to visit, Christmas can seem much like any other day, but with overeating and drinking thrown in.
This year, Christmas wasn't like that, We didn't have a big formal meal. We didn't eat or drink too much, but we spent time with each other, we talked, we laughed and we played. I'd love to say that it was all a great plan, but I'd be lying. It was the puppy that made things different, and the fact that we all came together to care for him.
The best thing of all about Christmas this year is that we had fun. Ive no way of knowing what the future holds for the puppy or for us, but I do know that we'll always have great memories of the Christmas we got Gwynne.
A puppy is for life, but it can also be for Christmas.