There are certain questions you should ask when you are interested in a getting a dog.  I thought I covered them all but the one I didn’t ask was her weight.  The shelter said she was a husky mix: a little research via wikipedia stated a female husky is between 35-55 pounds.  Waiting in the vet lobby to meet blu, I was completely overwhelmed when they brought her out.  She was a bit rambunctious – as any dog who has been holed up in a crate all week would be.  She gave out a big “WOO WOO” howl and as I approached she jumped up on me.

This was no 35 pound dog.  This wasn’t a 55 pound dog.  This was a beast weighing in at 73 pounds!  As I walked to my car to get her leash, I thought about making a mad dash for it.

Collared and leashed, I asked the vet where I could find a park because Cesar Milan says you should walk a dog as soon as you adopt them.  Hardest walk of my life.  Calm assertive energy …barely.  There was a lot of chanting “I am the pack leader.”  Which probably sounded more like this in my head “I AM the pack leader.”  There was a lot of pulling – on her end.  There was a lot of correcting on my end.  After about 30 minutes, we walked back to the car where I had a little chat with blu.  Something along the lines of total frustration.  I was positive I was in over my head.  Calm assertive.  Sure.

We drove the 2.5 hours home where she eventually slept in the back of the car.  Before we went inside, there was another walk (a la Cesar Milan advice).  This walk was a bit easier.  There was less pulling.  And because the fear of the dog whisperer was in my brain, we had another walk before going to sleep.  And this walk was even better.

My life was in a major upheavel: figuring out how to care for the dog plus work and volleyball practice.  A routine set in with early morning walks (5 a.m. early!), work, volleyball practice and another late night walk before bed.  On non-practice nights, we would walk four miles plus our morning walks.  We were like the postman: snow, rain, sleet, hail… we were outside walking.  My only reprieve on Wednesday when she spent the day at doggie daycare.

Our first month together, I lost 14 pounds; blu lost nine.  I was determined to have a good, happy dog.  Happy (not rambunctious) dog = happy owner.

chillaxin' at petsmart...

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