May 21, 2009

Dog Terrorist? Nah. God Truster? Oh Yeah!

I admit it. We've been scoping the local pounds for the perfect family dog. We've looked at close to 40 and finally found one that we all fell in love with. This is no small thing for us. I've been anti-pet for years but when our teenage son came to us with his very own puppy-dog eyes and a written request and plan to pay all expenses himself (including a percentage put into a savings account every month to cover unexpected vet bills)....and then went out and found his own lawn mowing work and in a matter of one month raised over $150 dollars...I knew we were going to be adding a new family member soon.

We went into the pound and interacted with a beautiful American Eskimo dog. She was so obedient and patient and well mannered. She liked us...we all (yeah, me too!) fell in love with was a match. I asked several questions...

How much will it cost?

Does she get along with other dogs?

Has she ever nipped at anyone?

Is she potty-trained?

Is she a purebred?

Is she fixed yet?

Come to find out she was in heat and couldn't be fixed yet. So my next question was (since she was a purebred, I know nothing about dog abusers and I'm a homeschooling mom..."What a great learning experience to let her have one litter and study up on stud service, the birth process, how a mommy dog cares for her babies") "Can we breed her once and then get her fixed?" Most likely we wouldn't have done it, but I thought I'd ask.

Uh...guess that was the wrong question. We were immediately declared puppy mill breeders, their tone changed and we were instantly the enemy. They wouldn't let us adopt her until after she was spayed, they wouldn't hold her for us, nothing. Case closed. We could call back once a week and see if she was fixed yet, but no promises.

Yeah, I feel a bit like I just walked through the airport screaming "I have a bomb!"

Needless to say I have a heartbroken boy. But you know what? What a great lesson and I'll tell you why.

All along we've been praying for the right dog to fit into our family. That the Lord wouldn't let us make any mistakes and that His timing would prevail over our passionate rush to get a new cuddly dog. I got to talk to the kids about trusting God's plans and timing, about my own moments of pain and struggle and the times I weathered the storm and looked back thanking God for those hard times and the fruit that they brought to my life. And their disappointment and anger began to soften and seep away.

And mine did too.

And at the end of the day a broken teenage boy kissed me good night and said, "I'm so glad you're my Mom. I feel so much better."

My guess is we'll still have a dog soon. The perfect dog for us. But the lessons we're going to learn along the way and the great story that we'll have to tell will make it an even deeper experience.


Jennifer said...

I have had so many times in my life when everything seems to be PERFECT...and then God throws a wrench in my "well-laid plans" that I made on my own. Thank you so much for this beautiful reminder to rest secure in God's timing (Ecc. 3:11). I just know he has the most perfect dog picked out for your family. And if this dog is the one, and he somehow works it out, the extra effort you had to go through to get her will make bringing her home that much sweeter.

TAMI said...

We know this journey - though the details are a tiny bit different. I remember how desperate our girls were and would ask ANYONE to pray for our family. What a beautiful testimony you've given!! And you must be very proud of your hard-working and committed son.

Liz said...

I know what your going through! About 10 years ago found a dog that I fell in love with instantly & took to the humane society. They turned it over to animal control because they didn't know it's history. After 1 week it was unclaimed & we were able to adopt Jimmy!

Leanne said...





It's called the Humane Society, it is anything BUT.

Okay, I won't rant....

But what a great object lesson for the kids!

You handled it well.

And that perfect dog will come along in God's time.


Angie said...

I agree. The right dog is out there for's just hard waiting. We got our kids 2 pugs right before Christmas and they are so sweet. So good with our kids and just down right funny! They are Lenny and Squiggy....both boys, actually Lenny is Squiggy's Uncle but they are like 10 days apart. Best of buddies those 2 are.

Good luck with finding your new best friend!!


Halfmoon Girl said...

Man, the stuff I had to sign to adopt a kitten once was incredible. I had to say that I would allow them to come into my home to check on the animal when they wanted to- sheesh. Hope it all works out- know it will all work out since you are trusting in the Lord.

Jason L. Cheung said...

This post saddens me to no end. I was SOOO excited when I read American Eskimo Dog, I have a friend up here who has a Show Dog that is that breed and was thinking about how I could put you in contact with her, and then I read the crushing response from the pound. That they would deny this dog a loving, caring home is unforgivable. I would encourage you to keep checking on the dog.


elicia tamburine said...

hi Gayle, i'm Jason's friend ~ your blog post made me sad.

funny thing is: i bet this same dog makes it into our system. so there's a chance you'll get this very same eskie!

please drop me a line and i'll help you wiht an Eskie. i know breeders and the purebred rescue coordinator in Seattle.

i HATE the hijacking of the Humane Movement [withholding rant].

elicia tamburine

Cynthia said...

That is really a seems like some people assume the worst all the time. I hope it works out for you to get the dog, or maybe find another one you'll love!

Jenny's Vegcafe said...

While I would never suspect you as a puppy mill breeder- I will say that given you had already looked at 40 animals then you know how many dogs need good homes. It makes sense for them not to adopt any that aren't spayed.
However, I think they should have held the dog for you until she was spayed. Hope the right one comes along soon.
I looked at the shelter too but didn't find a dog that fit right with my kids. Our right fit finally came from a free to good home on Craigslist. She was already fixed, house broken, and good with kids. We got lucky. Hope you do too.

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