A Future Dog?

Yup, my mind has already gone to finding a future dog for our family. I desperately miss our dog, and I know I will for years to come.  But I also know that we are dog people and I want a dog in our family.  In fact, both Mr. MPB and I have always wanted our child(ren) to grow up with dogs.  Some of our favourite childhood memories were with our childhood dogs and we both want the same for Little MPB. I’ll Also admit that if I cannot give Little MPB a human sibling, the least I can do is give him a puu-py best friend.  And, we know our son’s birth mom chose us in part because of our dog – she shares our love of big dogs and also wanted Little MPB to grow up with a dog.  Also, Little MPB continues to search for his Puu-py, so I assume he also wants a dog in his life too. 

So, here’s where we are at.  Mr. MPB is not ready for another dog just yet.  I am, our house is too empty and feels still.  Little MPB is too young to have a vote.

The only problem is that regardless if we get one in a few months or in a few weeks, we don’t know what to get! We didn’t expect to be looking at getting another dog for 5+ years, so we hadn’t even begun to consider different breeds.  This said, we have decided that we want a puppy, even though the idea of adding a puppy to our already busy lives does seem slightly daunting.  Also, we are not going to get a dog that resembles our dog, which means a big black dog is out of the question.  We are not trying to replace her, so this one must be different.  Also, we have decided that we are not going to get another rescue dog.  We loved, loved, loved our rescue dog but she had a lot of fear issues, and with a toddler running around we’d like the piece of mind of knowing the dog’s history and it’s tendencies.  This means, for now we are not looking at rescue agencies.

So, we have decided to start researching large breed and medium-large breed dogs.  If we can agree on a breed then we’ll start investigating breeders.  If we cannot agree on a breed, then we will keep researching and talking.

Here’s our list of dog breeds that we might consider:

  • Bernese Mountain Dog – We have always both loved this breed and love how good with kids they are.  But, they are known to be sick and not live long.  Also they are giant and will also make our old 90lbs dog look small.
  • Nova Scotia Duck Toller – This dog is beautiful – it looks similar to a small Golden Retriever.  But, these dogs are crazy expensive – as in $3500 – $4000.  They are also apparently slightly harder to train.  This is one of Mr. MPB’s favourites.  I like them but I cannot stomach the price tag.
  • Old English Sheep Dog – These dogs are big, furry and good with kids.  And, can you say adorable?!!  This is one of my favourites we have discussed so far.  Mr. MPB’s not a fan of just how large they are.
  • Golden Retriever – A good classic dog – good size, decent price, good with kids, etc.  But, we both grew up with Golden’s and would like to something a little bit different.
  • Sheepadoodle, Bernedoodle, Goldendoodle or a Labradoodle.  All the doodles seem to shed less, are good with kids, are smart and are supposedly easy to train.  Right now my favourite is the sheepadoodle probably because I love sheepdog so much. Mr. MPB is still stuck on the idea of having a dog that is any sort of doodle because their names are so funny to say.

Does anyone have experience to share with us about any of the breeds we’ve identified so far?

Or, does anyone have any other dog breed suggestions we may want to consider?

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It’s been a rather rough week.  And I am so ready for something positive to happen.

You see, I haven’t had time to write about it just yet, but in addition to the deep and overwhelming grief I am trying to cope with, we also spent a day in the emergency room with Little MPB.  Now, before everyone worries, rest assured that Little MPB is okay and will be just fine.  He has a gastrointestinal virus, aka a stomach bug.  This bug just has to work through his system and he’s home from daycare until he’s fever breaks and the diarrhea stops.  It should clear out of his system sometime within the next 2 weeks. This is Little MPB’s first encounter with a stomach bug, and both Mr. MPB and I managed to find ourselves covered in puke and changing more diapers then we prefer to at all hours of the day and night (and as an added bonus it’s likely highly contagious – neither Mr. MPB or I are looking forward to our turn). This is definitely one of those first that we knew was coming one day, but one we hoped we could avoid for ever.

Needless to say, combining a toddler with a stomach bug and grief over our dog, and no-one in this house has slept in days.

But the trip to the emergency room and ongoing stomach bug is actually not the point today.

Instead, I want to tell a story about a parenting realization I had at the hospital.

You see, when we went to the hospital I knew Little MPB wasn’t dying.  He had a high fever, but we were able to manage it with Advil and Tylenol and he wasn’t over lethargic or inconsolably irritable.  And I knew that kids can have diarrhea and vomiting and they probably aren’t going to die.  In fact, we only went to the hospital because we decided we needed to be safe rather then sorry since we had never experienced this type of illness.  And while I was almost embarrassed for overreacting, the nurses and doctor continued to reassure us that we made the right call to bring him in.

While at the hospital, I caught myself as I said to the ER Doctor, I’m sure this will be just like when he had Roseola, we’ll freak out because it’s his first time with it.  But now we are like, it’s just Roseola, no big deal. 

I distinctly remember how annoyed I was when other more seasoned mom’s said it’s just Roseola, no big deal to me, after we rushed our son to the Children’s hospital with a 104 degree temperature when he was just a few months old.  I remember being so filled with annoyance, maybe even rage, that they couldn’t understand how scary this was! I felt judged for taking our son to the emergency for his high fever, I didn’t understand their comment.

But, now I get it.  It wasn’t that they couldn’t understand, rather it’s just that they had more experience to know that it’s not a scary illness.  But they only have that experience because they too had probably rushed their own child to the hospital and/or were consumed with worry over something that scared them at one point too.

I realized that with more time as parents, we do start to learn what’s scary and what’s not so scary.  We also start to learn when to be cautious and when not to be.

And, I have to say, I’m pretty darn glad that I am able to learn these parenting things, even if it means I get puked on from time to time.

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