I was on the fence about getting a new dog for a long time. Once winter set in and I was in the house a lot more, it became much more apparent something was missing. The other fuzzy roommates are fine for having life in the house, but seriously they don’t care about your day and you can’t take them to the beach or to the park. They have their limitations.
I started looking casually to see what was out there. My suspicions were confirmed, there were few dogs that i COULD bring home. I have the smallest house in Portland Maine, a number of cats and a partially sedentary lifestyle, this eliminates most dogs available in Maine and environs. Every few days I would check Craigslist, Uncle Henrys, and Petfinder. Being of the impecunious persuasion I would sort by cost and completely ignore breeders and expensive rescues.
Last Thursday a homely little face popped up on Petfinder but not for long, she was only up for about a day and the rescue already had enough applications to remove her listing. I had figured I would apply just to get my feet wet. Luckily I was first in line… that never happens. Then I figured I would just go look, can’t hurt to look right? Of course once I saw her, i wasn’t leaving without her.
Thea..Althea now.. is from Texas, she was rescued and had all her ailments treated and made ready for adoption. I felt the adoption fee, a dear price for me, was a drop in the bucket for the transport and medicals already invested. I can always make more money.
But with this adoption I am experiencing something I never did before, guilt. I have fostered and adopted hundreds of cats and dozens of dogs, I am usually the one finding homes for animals. Not keeping them on purpose. There were five other people after me who could have given this dog a perfectly good life. What business did I have adopting her? I am now responsible for giving her as good a life as she would have gotten with any of them.
So far Althea isn’t helping any with the guilt, she is turning out to be perfect. She fits the house perfectly, the cats aren’t threatened by her and she doesn’t see them as things to chase. She is reminding me to get off my ass and walk outside a couple of times a day. She is still a little put out that i have to go to work in the morning but then so am I. When the weather warms up, we will be going to the farmer’s market, and the dog beach, and other hikes, maybe even ride in the canoe.