Are you the one?

Selection. Lately I’ve been losing sleep. And whenever that happens, often a song pops into my head. You know the feeling. No matter how you try to forget it, that song plays in the background. Most of the time, insomnia is just annoying but often it has been the impetus for some of my best thoughts, decisions and revelations.

What am I losing sleep over these days…relates to trying to find a suitable addition for Sam. When Sam joined the household over 7 years ago, there were already two Old English Sheepdogs in residence (because obviously I couldn’t mop drool, kibbles, pieces of grass and twigs up enough). Both were delightful joys and both very different personalities. Eliot was the curmudgeon worry-wort and Puck…she was named for the Shakespearean character from “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and completely lived up to the moniker. Sam was thoroughly captivated by her in his ‘paw-sinova’ mind. When both of the OES’s moved across the Rainbow Bridge, he took both their absences hard, but especially Puck’s.

Thankfully the song currently playing is one I actually like as opposed to one I despise: One Republic’s, Counting Stars (though very weird video), “Lately I’ve been, I’ve been losing sleep, dreaming about the things that we could be.” I have been earnestly looking to add to our home but keep getting hung up on the selection process and the question, “Are you the one?” Can you even call it a pack when there’s just two to start?

_MG_4770-(ZF-2552-28389-2-002)-2We recently had the opportunity to bring an adorably sweet and gorgeous little sister home with us. Her family situation had dramatically changed and she was perfect. Four years old, fabulous charcoal colored Standard, with soulful brown eyes and a boundless energy for chasing balls. Maybe that was it (Sam’s lack of ball playing interest is well known and he couldn’t even catch a cold if he tried, let alone a ball), but after the initial sniff and greet, he was mostly nonplussed (maybe because she left him in a cloud of dust when he tried to chase after her-seriously that girl had some wheels and it just might not have been the most confidence building trait in his mind–a male ego thing maybe?). At any rate, after carefully examining our personal circumstances, we I ultimately passed and it left me wondering, how do you know when it’s the right one?

When I first found out Sam was available, I wasn’t completely sure about the timing and certainly didn’t have a strong feeling about whether or not he was the perfect one as I do now. I cannot even fathom him not being my bud. Oh sure, I was excited at the prospect of bringing a Standard into the fold (my last Standard had crossed the Rainbow Bridge a number of years before). I always wanted to have another but wasn’t quite 100% sure if it was a spot on idea and there were already 2 big dogs in the house and he was very different from past poodles. Still I brought this somewhat aloof and decidedly goofball dog home. Trust me when I say he’s still a goofball but back then he was goofy in different ways. He had no experience with city life and it showed. Now he’s just wonderfully goofy but very city acclimated and I wouldn’t change a hair on his head because of it.

For about the last year or so, I’ve been scouring poodle rescue sites locally and nationally, applied for countless available dogs with various organizations and talked with numerous folks about adding another brother or sister. I already know that a puppy probably wouldn’t be right for us, a somewhat seasoned dog would be a much better fit so breeder shopping isn’t something I’ve considered. I’m looking for another companion to add and want to do the right thing by rescuing a dog whose life circumstances have changed and who needs a loving home in which to thrive. We’ve got love to spare and have been viewed as an ideal applicant, but…I haven’t been able to figure what makes one better or more desirable than another? Is it that soulful eye contact, the nudging under an arm to ‘pet me, pet me!’ or that relaxed sigh when they’re contently laying next to you hogging the sofa or bed? Or is it just old fashioned chemistry? Is it all of that or something more intrinsic? What defines being smitten?

How do you determine that special quality that makes you know “this is the one for us?” or do you just let it play out? And yes, I am aware that all of the pups that I’ve checked out thus far may not have been perfect for any number of reasons, yet I think there might be something else, something deeper and I’m definitely on a quest to figure that out. This is probably why Counting Stars is playing in my brain non-stop and keeping me awake at night. Something, somewhere is definitely trying to tell me something but I’m not sure what that is just yet. Got any answers?

How did you know the pup you chose was the right one for you?  Leave us a paw print with your thoughts and how you selected the perfect one and when you knew it was perfect because I definitely need a good night’s sleep. 🎶🎶🎶

Live, love, bark! <3

41 thoughts on “Are you the one?

  1. It took me about 7 years to get excited about having another little one in the house. After the loss of Thumper I couldn’t bring myself to even look at another. In the past year I have felt the urge however and when looking at “the pound” and several rescue homes over and over again, the same cute picture and story kept coming up online. When I finally got the courage to seek her out, I just knew she would be gone and that I had lost my chance. Low and behold, Miley was still at the rescue center and we made a date for the first meet. She was a sweet, adorable 1.5 year old mutt and I fell in love instantly! We had to “sleep on it” before opening up our home to this very special family member. She was the right choice for us and I think she feels the same way! 🙂 You know this feeling with Sam and we all know you two are a perfect fit!!

  2. Zeus and Zoe came to us in a special way. We were looking for two pups and I called a couple of breeders. The one I reached had a two pups (the only two of the litter, one boy one girl – just what we wanted) that had been born on that very day. We visited them every two weeks from the time they were two weeks old until we brought them home with us. I always felt like it was a blessing and a sign from God when we decided to give up on trying for kids and bring two fur kids into our life. A gift for our heartache. I believe each one comes to you differently. I remember when Sam came and you weren’t sure about this good but he’s made his way deeper into your heart (I think) that just about any of you fur companions. Sometimes you have to take a leap of faith and throw away the exit clause. Stop over analyzing – there will always be unknowns (easy for me to say the supreme over analyzer!). That’s my two cents Missy! xoxoxo

  3. I always knew immediately: Ottie chose me really, by positioning himself as if wishing to protect me. He still does that. He was the first dog I saw when I started looking for a boxer and I knew the moment I walked him. With Portia, she jumped in my lap while I was waiting for the handler to come get her, and made herself comfortable. I guess she also chose me.

  4. I think it goes both ways – love at first sight as well as growing to love each other. I don’t think there’s any one way about it. We’ve had it happen both ways more than once. And I’m with you on no puppies. Which means that, even more, it might not be love at first sight. Older dogs, even ones less a year old, take a while to determine whether or not your home is their final destination. Like first, second and third dates, the true personality takes awhile to come through. Just my two cents. Looking forward to seeing what worms its way into your heart and out of your ear. 🙂

  5. I am a firm believer in fate. With the exception of one insane miniature Schnauzer, all of our dogs have just “felt” right when we chose each other. You will know when the perfect friend comes along.

  6. Ha! I’m glad your readers have given all this good advice because as you know I’m the last person to ask. Two words: Lu and Lu. But you’re not a sucker like me, or insane like me for that matter – you’re sensible! I’m stoked this new adventure could be happening soon, so trust yourself (& Sam) and you’ll do just fine. 🙂 xo

    1. I have been buoyed by all the great comments and although there are times I know Lulu has been a a bit of a challenge, I know you wouldn’t change bringing her into your heart and home. And in her own special way, she adds to the mix. We’re leaving ourselves open to whatever the universe offers. <3

      1. Someone’s gotta give the rejects a chance, right? I try to stay positive – for example I haven’t been sued yet! 😉

  7. That is a hard thing. With me and mom our hearts just touched.

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  8. First I have to address the ear worm. My sister and I both get it. We’ve taken to using the recording options on the iPhone and singing our ear worms to each other. It’s kind of fun and something to look forward to because often times my ear worm changes based upon what she sings to me. LOL

    As for the perfect pup…I’m the wrong one for advice. I applied for many dogs to give Sampson a playmate and finally was so discouraged from the dogs already having been adopted or turned down because I wasn’t a stay at home mom, that I applied for three labs at the same time. This got an immediate response from the Lab rescue organization, which prompted a phone call and conversation and they deemed “Ginny” was the dog for me.

    I took her sight unseen, picked her up off the transport truck the following Saturday, cried all day because she was a nightmare, but as the say, the rest is history. 🙂

    Good luck in your pursuit of a sibling!

    1. LOL, oh Jodi, I cannot fathom you or Ms. D without one another [insert big cheesy grin here]. What did Jerry Maguire say, …’you complete me.’ I think that totally fits your situation. We continue to remain hopeful (for crying out loud…it’s been over a year since I started looking) and open to whatever the universe deems. P.S. Thank Gawd you ditched the ‘Ginny’ name. Totally wrong!

      1. I wouldn’t trade her for all the gold in….well wherever they keep the gold these days. She made me realize I like those challenging dogs. LOL

        I’m sure the right one will turn up when the time is right.

  9. It just happens when it’s supposed to happen. That’s the way it’s always been for me. With Kissy – my large toy poodle – it was a matter of finding the right breeder first. Even back then most of the breeders whose pups I could afford just turned me off one way or another. But Kissy’s breeder kept her home immaculate and the puppies were all healthy, happy, and well-loved. And Kissy gave me a nose-ful of sweet puppy kisses and stole my heart. She was my first “baby” and my heart dog for her entire life. With Callie, she was the pick of her litter and she wriggled her way into our hearts before she even opened her eyes. Shadow was the last puppy left when we got to the breeder’s house. And she was into everything in their kitchen. I knew she was going to be a little stinker, but I also knew Callie would be the perfect teacher for her younger sister. Then there was Ducky. Those Ears!! But I wasn’t ready for a 3rd dog. I still wasn’t ready when she showed up on the shelter’s urgent list; but I was unwilling to let them euthanize her. I went back and adopted her that very day. It was tough in the beginning, but I wouldn’t give her up for all the money in the world. She belongs with us. And she’s here to stay.

    1. What a wonderful synopsis of your pack history. Life does some clever things to get us where we need to be and help those that need it the most. I’m positive there’s some special pet out there just waiting for the magic and pray we’ll be there to provide it. Sam will be a terrific older brother. Ducky seems like she was tailor made for you and your pack. 🙂

  10. A lot of it is making it work. In January 2014, Kali came from rescue. 12 years earlier, Kyla was in an impossible situation and we got her out of it. She was a great dog. Kaci was in a foster home and she’s great. Enter Kali, she was wild and full of energy, probably because she was cooped up in a cage at PetSmart on the adoption lineup. The first morning here, Kali challenged Kyla over Kyla’s favorite-frozen green beans. Kyla let Kali know who was boss. Everything went smoothly after that and after Kyla crossed in December, Kali has been just wonderful. You have to work at it, however, but it’s worth it. Don’t confine yourself to poodles. Branch out to poodle mixes. A lot of money went on vet bills for pure breds. Kyla was a rescue pure bred Scottie by all indications. She had Addison’s disease, pancreatitis, and finally succumbed to melanoma. Kaci is a Westie mix and Kali is a Scottie mix. They have most of the temperament of the breeds but so far both are healthy. There’s something to be said for retaining your mental health when they get sick or worse. I think I’ll fly off my soap box now.

    1. You can fly around our ranch anytime! Thank you for the thoughts; we have looked at poodle mixes as well, all have been minature sized, but we’ll keep looking; I’ll know once I look into the right one’s eyes. 🙂

  11. you are right to be careful. You have a nice pack now, and whoever moves in needs to fit energy wise. It’s my opinion that you can spend sleepless nights overthinking it but it’s all about the unconscious moment of knowing. You will know who’s right. You can try and try to make a dog right or several dogs might do, but with only two in a pack it’s an important decision.

    Ask the universe for your new partner. Sounds woowoo but there is something about just putting it out there. Then it happens. It does. Just like that. Even set a time frame if you must, say, send a pack mate within 3 months or whatever.

    I visited two poodle breeders and countless shelters looking for Cole. They felt not right. When I saw him I got a spark. He looked like other babies but when I looked into his eyes, I stopped dithering. LeeAnna
    Cole: Ask Sam… he’ll find someone…

  12. The next time you are in our Blog, use search field (upper right) and enter Big Brown Eyes. The resulting Post will describe exactly how I knew Ray would be moving in with us! 🙂

  13. It is very hard. Especially when you really want to do right by Sam.

    I have no advice. But I do feel that when we make a decision it becomes the right decision. Because we figure out how to move forward in that new way.

    It’s also hard because conventional wisdom doesn’t always apply. Many people recommend you adopt an opposite sex dog from your first one. But our experience as foster parents found that Honey formed stronger bonds with female dogs than with males. Most of the time…

    I’ll be watching carefully to see what happens next. I’m sure it will be exciting.

  14. You will know…that heart gets tugged and the brain goes on a holiday…as much as Forrest has had his challenges..and as much as the one pup in his case was shy and hiding and surely was going to have issues…my heart one..12 years old still with challenges…but i adore him with all my heart 🙂

  15. Maybe our heart will tell us when we meet THE ONE? We were sure that it has to be Easy as we saw his ad. And although the breeder suggested two other pups from the same litter (she was afraid it wouldn’t be the perfect match, because he was “special”), we only wanted Easy. And even when I sometimes cry or when I’m super angry my heart always says: keep calm he is THE ONE :o)

Feel free to bark your thoughts...but no growling please.

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