Today marks an official year of having little Louis in my life. (Don't ask where Dewey came from - it rhymed with Louis and seemed to get his attention!) Anyway, I included three milestone marker photos to show his growth over the year - a wee puppy photo, his graduation from puppy school photo, and, of course, his 1-year birthday photo! (yes, we had a 1-year birthday party for louis - don't all puppy parents??) What a year it has been since we picked him up from his family in Springwater, NY. We had a choice between him or the "pick of the litter." I had read that you should avoid picking a puppy that seemed to have a runny nose or any signs of breathing issues.
As soon as I picked him up, he sneezed all over me, and I knew I had to have him over the so-called "pick of the litter." To me, Louis is the pick of the country! This dog has brought more joy to our lives that I could ever imagine. He's hard to control when he gets excited, loves to lick and sneeze, eats everything in sight, and wakes me up every morning between 1-4am for his breakfast! However, I can't remember life before him as he's become so ingrained in our lives. A few lessons that Louis has taught, and continues to teach, me:
1. Every day is exciting! He never wakes up in a bad mood as everyday is a new adventure for our canine companion. Imagine bolting out of bed every morning excited about what the day will hold.
2. A little love goes a long way. Louis is never short on affection. He wants to be involved in everything we do, appears content just to be in our presence, and asks for very little in return (except constant attention!) Douse those you care about with attention and care.
3. Ask for what you want. Sure 3am breakfast may seem insane, but you'll never know if you don't ask. Be bold and request what you need.
4. Take naps. When the going gets tough, Louis gets sleepy. A little self-care goes a long way for all of us!
5. Mark your territory. Ok, so we all know what I'm referring to here. However, we can take it a step beyond the male dog definition and work to carve out a niche for our lives. How can we leave our mark on the world?
May we have many more years of lessons learned from this wheezing, sniffly, non-pick of the litter!