As y’all know if you’ve read anything I write, I have this wonderful, crazy, active, and very smart Golden Retriever puppy. I adore the little shit, but there are times when he stretches my nerves to the snapping point, and then stands on them and spins around.
Few seem to understand the stresses that come with this kind of puppy. He is a ball of energy who won’t settle until there’s no alternative, he just sort of falls asleep all of a sudden and wakes up an hour later, just as full of piss and vinegar as ever.
When people ask about him, my stock answer is, “He’s a handful but he’s a joy!” This is all true, and it avoids me saying, “he had me in tears today because when we got out of the car at Petsmart, he almost took me to the ground, I managed to get him back in the car while a couple of people looked on disapprovingly – they, of course, were not trying to wrestle 70 lbs of puppy into a vehicle when he was bound and bloody determined to go OVER THERE RIGHT NOW!” I don’t say that I cried all the way home because my over active imagination is saying that I will never be able to take him anywhere and that the class we’re about to start is a waste of time and money because I probably won’t be able to get him into the facily or control him once we’re in there, if we DO manage to get inside.
I don’t say a lot because the advice I get is either laughable or just plain stupid, or I tried that and it won’t work. Don’t tell me to “ditch the food bowl.” He could give a shit about the food bowl and would probably go days without eating if I didn’t keep shoving it at him.
And don’t tell me it’s something I have to learn to live with. Do you honestly think that I don’t know that this is who he is, and that he will always be smart and will always test me? It’s part of why I love him – but I learned long ago that you can love someone or some dog and not like everything they do. I don’t like some of his behaviors and we will work on training those away.
There are few places I feel safe saying anything about how difficult it is some days. One of them was apparently less safe than I thought. I should know by now not to trust people. Or maybe I should have adopted a pet rock.