December 27, 2020, was the day we brought Miss Tedy Pickles home. She was calm, docile, and truly the most relaxed pug I’d ever met. Two nights later she was getting a little more wild and crazy, and we woke early, around two, to find a fun surprise. Tedy had taken a huge, runny puppy poop in the bed. Oh, we were also in Florida visiting family for the holidays. So, the white sheets she covered in her disgusting puppy splatter were hotel sheets that we had to do our best to clean.
I share this as it should have been a sign of what the first year was going to be like. My previous dog, also a pug, passed away in 2010. His name was Chico and we had to put him to sleep as he’d become very ill due to a degenerative disease that was rapidly tearing him apart. He was only eight years old at the time. I recall him being a food motivated, lazy loaf who loved sofa cuddles. The puppy years are so far in the past I can’t really recall.
Well, Tedy gave my partner, Brian, and I a crash course in what it means to be dog parents. I don’t say, pet parents, as our cats are both, well were older. Elle passed away from cancer in November of 2021. She and Muffin are the typical older cats. They give zero shits about anything that isn’t a warm bed, a bowl of food, or the occasional treat.
Tedy on the other hand is a full-time child that needs constant attention. I say that as a reflection from day one through today. She is potty trained, which is great, but that doesn’t mean she can be left unsupervised. If you try to ignore her while working, she’ll begin to run about making noise, getting into everything she can until you either come and play or attempt to stop her. That’s a problem in its own right. She thinks grabbing her is a game… so she runs. Of course, the kitchen has an island. This means we often end up running laps around it trying to grab her. Sometimes I turn on my Apple Watch to get the extra points towards closing my rings.
None of this sounds insane for those who have had dogs consistently in their lives. For us, after a decade of no dog and only cats, it was like adopting a toddler who isn’t really growing up. She’s matured into true toddler who now will scratch at your leg when you are trying to work, but won’t let you pick her up. She will cry if you leave her downstairs while you run up to use the restroom. She’ll lose her shit when food is out and terrorize the cat if she gets near us when a treat is at stake.
Don’t get me wrong. We love Tedy PIckles, but I truly forgot how much work pug babies are and have no idea how people have actually children. I’m definitely looking forward to a few years from now when she’s far enough away from the puppy days that her focus is purely food and sleep. At that point, we’ll be on the same page.