Dear Dobby,

It has been a wonderful year and a half since your “Gotcha Day.” You started as a cute , 3-month-old little furball who had endless energy and who would incessantly whine in your crate at 6:30am because you were ready to start your day. As late risers, we longed for the days when you would finally sleep as late as we did. That took months. And months. And months.

You aced your “Kindergarten” class at Petsmart and learned how to “sit,” “stay,” “wait,” “off” and “down” with the best of them. You also showed that, whoever it was, be it man, woman, child or dog of any size, you loved them all.

You taught yourself how to leave us alone when we’re eating. After Pippi (your canine predecessor) begged at the table for people food for 18 years, your nonchalance at our mealtime has been WONDERFUL.

You don’t chew pillows anymore.

The last 4 months or so have been the best so far. You sleep just as late as we do, even if it’s until 11am. Instead of being a hyperactive pain in the ass for hours on end, you’ve calmed down so that you leave visitors alone after a few minutes. Life with you as our dog is very blissful now. So what better thing to do than totally mess with this perfection and consider getting a new puppy.

What were we thinking???

We contacted the same breeder from where we got you and she had a little boy available. Brown fur. 4 months old. Perfect! Can we see him soon after Christmas? Yes? Terrific! And can we bring Dobby with us to see how she responds? We can? Great! Saturday, January 8th, 2pm…see you then!

We should have known something “wasn’t right” when you, usually an awesome traveler, cried and whined in the car for 5-10 minutes at 15-20 minute intervals on nearly the entire 3-hour trip to the breeder. Then when we brought you into the breeder’s house in Jacksonville, you showed us some more behaviors that you’ve never, ever shown before. You, the dog who loves to play with every dog you’ve ever met, from full-grown rottweilers to chihuahua puppies, refused to even look at the cute little guy. The only time you would give him any sort of attention was when he’d get too close to you (or Joe and I) and then you’d growl, show your teeth and pin him. And you did this, not once, not twice but three times in the first twenty minutes of our visit. The puppy’s response was absolutely normal – to screech, run away and avoid you entirely.

Well, shit.

Granted, we only had you two spend an hour together – if we have given you enough time, would you learn to like each other? Maybe. Would you learn to live with each other? Probably. But at what expense? The possibility of the puppy growing up with a complex and scared that you’re going to beat him up at any second? Or that we would have to keep the two of you separated at all times so you didn’t hurt him? We wanted a second dog so we could give and have double the love and so you could have another dog to play with all the time – not to have two dogs wherein one was at risk for getting seriously injured by the other.

We were prepared to deal with “the joys of puppyhood”…the early hours, the frequent walks, the teaching good manners, the teething, the pee in the house. We were not prepared for “Mutual of Ohama’s Wild Kingdom” to take place in our computer room at any given moment. What’s more, we didn’t want it – to have to have that level of vigilance was not in our plans.

As I said, this wasn’t your normal behavior when you meet another dog. Who knows…maybe you “knew” this was a potential “new brother” and you wanted no part of him and/or the situation of having another dog in our house. You certainly made it seem that way. So Joe and I both agreed that, under the circumstances, we wouldn’t be getting that new puppy, or any other new dog.

We’re so glad the breeder was so understanding of our predicament! And what’s more, she said that if she can’t find another good home, she’ll keep him – so he’s sure to grow up happy – probably happier than if he was here, thanks to you. We just couldn’t do that to him.

So welcome to the world of being an “only child,” Dobby. As only children ourselves, both Joe and I agree that it has its advantages sometimes. But don’t you EVER tell me that you’re bored because you don’t have anyone to play with! 😉

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