I didn’t grow up with dogs. I didn’t even know I really liked dogs until my mid-twenties and 1st marriage. My husband at the time came with a golden retriever. Then, we adopted a female chocolate lab puppy that I named Gucci (my one and only Gucci item). Unfortunately, I lost both dogs in the divorce. To this day, if I think of Gucci (whom I assume is probably in doggie heaven by now), I smile picturing my ex hunting with the boys and chocolate lab yelling, “Gucci!”. It’s the little laughs in life.
About a year without a dog, I decided it was time to adopt one. I knew I wanted to “rescue” a dog, but wasn’t up for the pound or a puppy. I was afraid if I went to the local shelter, I would end up with a dozen dogs. Too difficult to pick one dog out of many needy ones. I also knew I couldn’t handle a puppy by myself. (LAUGHING! — looking back, I thought a puppy was too difficult? That was obviously before I had a baby). I decided on a golden retriever rescue organization called Gold Ribbon Rescue. I filled out my application, conducted the home interview, and was approved…then waited. Months later, I finally got a call saying they had a perfect match for me. They had an approximately 1-year-old male, underweight, tested positive for heartworms, golden retriever that had been picked up around a dumpster in an area South of Austin. His foster family appropriately named him Jett — a fitting name for a dog that would jet out the door if left open.
The first few weeks with Jett I remember thinking this is hard. How am I supposed to take care of a dog (all by myself), especially with heartworms?? — Once again, laughing! After surviving the first year as a new mom, taking care of Jett was a breeze.
Fast forward 10 years — remarried with a baby and Jett. Not only did my life change, but Jett became a big brother at the ripe old age of 10 (or in human years – 70?!?). Other moms whose starter children were four-legged would often say to me just wait — your four-legged child gets neglected when baby arrives. Oh, Poor Jett — the first 6 months of Landrie’s life, I barely remember him being around. Don’t worry, he survived — but so true, they do take a back seat to the new little in the house.
Landrie loves her Jett. Her first words were “Dog” and “Jett”. (Yep, I’m still working on “MOMMY” –sigh.) When Landrie wakes up in the mornings, she eagerly yells “JETT!” and waits for him to arrive at her crib. Landrie seems to think you need to yell when you say his name. (Wonder where she gets that from?)
It’s amazing how gentle, sweet, and patient Jett is with her — she is the only “baby” he’s ever been around. Jett puts up with her laying, hugging, and sitting on him all day long. Granted, he’s loving the fact that he gets to clean up Landrie’s food messes that end up on the floor and take advantage of the numerous stroller walks. Not all bad for the old dog.
What an amazing playmate and big brother Jett has become to Landrie. Although, the start of this journey began with just Jett and me — I couldn’t have picked a better dog for my little girl.