What it's like to have a dog living with us.

I still can't believe that I'm typing out a post titled that ⬆️

I mean, had we planned to get a dog, obviously, the planning and anticipation would have gotten me used to the idea of having a dog around. This happened so suddenly, that it feels surreal. I really, really, really don't want Kasha to go back. And since I can't have that, I'm going to cherish every minute I spend with her. Here's how it's been going so far.

  • She really loves her parents. As do all dogs. They'd warned us that she tends to starve herself for the first day of their absence but then starts eating on her own soon enough. So we were pleasantly surprised to see her eat and drink without any fuss and I even went ahead and made the assumption that maybe she loved me too much to notice they were gone.

    But by bedtime on her first night here, she started pacing the corridor and when we checked, we found her sitting right by the main door, staring pointedly at it, almost willing it to open and reveal that her parents had just been hiding behind it all along.

    It was heartbreaking to see her wait for them like that. And she pretty much did it all night long because we heard her pacing and whining at night.

  • She's scared of our bedroom. AKA the magical, mysterious place the humans disappear to from time to time.

    Like I said, on her first night here, she kept pacing and whining because she a) missed her parents and b) couldn't figure out where we were. And on her first morning with us, when she heard our neighbors get out for work, she started barking non-stop. So Shane let her into our bedroom and for a minute, she looked at us like, "Oh so this is where you guys disappeared to. Don't do that, guys! I was worried sick."

    And as soon as I greeted her and gave her permission to settle in, she jumped on our bed and got comfy on Shane's side. That was the only time she did it though. Overall, she was too tensed to settle down on any other side of the room. In fact, she's always relieved when we let her out.

    We think this might have to do with the fact that the bedroom door never stays open and gets shut automatically. She probably fears being stuck in there without any way to escape.

    We've also noticed that when it's just one of us that retires to the bedroom, she goes looking for the missing person and sniffs at the door. And the minute the other one opens the door, she goes in, makes sure her human is okay and gets right out. Like, "I just want to make sure you're safe in there, human. Okay gtg BAI".

  • She loves the spare couch in our living room. She hardly ever sleeps on her bed anymore as she prefers being so close to the pushover female human in the house that all she has to do is rest her head on the armrest and look at me with innocent puppy eyes, and I drop everything I'm doing to give her all the scratchies in the world. Also, I feel that the couch might be more cushiony than her bed if that makes sense.

    Anyway, she's been trained to ask for permission before getting on any furniture and she does this by resting her chin on said piece of furniture and looking at us with her big beautiful eyes. If we say 'Okay', she gets on it.

    While she mostly chills on it by herself, she's always more than happy to make space for us if we want to hang out with her.

    There's been too much cuteness in our home lately.

  • There's dog hair everywhere! And I'm okay with it. I did wonder how I'd handle the shedding but turns out, there's nothing much you can do except clean more often and accept that your dog is going to shed no matter how much you brush her.

    We do try to brush her almost every evening but especially since it's Spring/Summer, we were told that she's been shedding a lot more.

    See all that white fluff on the grass? That's how much she shed when Shane brushed her the other day. She looks so embarrassed LOL!

  • I have a constant companion. On most other days when I work from home, there's usually total silence around me. Not that it's any different having Kasha around because she's super quiet and well behaved, but I suddenly have a shadow. Every time I get up from my seat, she does too. She sits right next to me while I write and always panics a little bit when I disappear into another room.

    In fact, when I closed the glass door to the living room before getting into the shower one day (because I didn't want her to start barking if the neighbours left again), she looked at me with so much hurt and apprehension that I went over to her, kneeled down and made a pinky promise to be right back. And once I got back, she did a little circle around me and rested her chin on my lap.

    My heart!

  • When I said constant companion...

    ...I meant constant companion.

    When I load the dishwasher, she comes up to me like, "Hey, I could just lick those plates clean if you like".

    When I sort out the laundry, she comes in, sniffs around and looks at me disapprovingly like, "Hmm...they smell too clean for my taste. I'll just leave you to it".

    When I go to the bathroom, I actually have to close the door now because she'd sit right there, looking at me like, "Do you need some help, human? You look like you could use some help".

    But you know what? I quite like having a shadow.

  • We're total noobs.

    You know how first-time parents spend all their time just staring at their baby, trying to figure out if everything is alright? I don't know if first-time dog parents do it too but Shane and I have not left her alone for even a minute except during night-night. One of us is constantly with her and more times than we like to admit, we've stopped everything we were doing to ask questions like,

    "Why is she making that sound?"

    "Why is she sitting right there?"

    "Why hasn't she moved at all in the past 12 minutes?"

    "Why is her leg doing that in her sleep? Is she in pain?"

    In fact, yesterday while we were making dinner, we both took turns tiptoeing to her, just to watch her sleep with her eyes open. It was the cutest thing in the world.

  • She freaks out easily. This could probably be because she's such a well-mannered dog, but almost everything makes her jump. Once when I was brushing my teeth while listening to a podcast, she came and stood outside the bathroom for some time. Then when she finally mustered up the courage to enter the bathroom, a woman's voice boomed out of my phone and she jumped. Like, "I'm so sorry, I didn't mean to interrupt your conversation".

    And every time there's someone at the door, she starts barking. This is weird considering how quiet she is most of the time so we usually ask her to go to her bed when we open the door. We thought that not seeing a stranger would make her stop barking. It did seem to work for some time until today morning when I got a parcel. She started barking again, except this time, she dashed to her bed the minute the bell rang and sat right there on her bed, barking all along. Kind of defeats the purpose of asking her to go to her bed, I'd say.

  • She's very intelligent. And again, very well trained. So we've even been walking her without a leash because she's amazing at following orders. She comes to us the minute we call her name, waits for us at the curb before crossing, trots ahead only after we give her permission, and even walks in between us if we ask her to.

    But because we were new to taking care of her, in the beginning, whenever we saw other people approaching us, we'd ask her to come to us and walk in between us. The other day, however, we forgot to say anything to her but the minute she saw other people approaching, she came right back to us and started walking in between us.

    This dog is every dog parent's dream.

  • She's afraid of bigger dogs. We've noticed that she likes to approach and even play with dogs that are smaller than her at the park but the minute she sees a bigger dog, she slows down and starts whining. On many occasions, she's conveniently pretended to be occupied with something else in order to let us overtake her so that she can hide behind us. Like, "Scared? Me? Pish-posh! It was just really important for me to smell this blade of grass for some time".

    But no matter what the size, she absolutely hates it if any other dog tries to sniff her bum. She's immediately like, "Hey, back off! There's nothing to smell there. I'm a lady and I don't poop", before freaking out and bolting.

  • Shane found a solution to his sock problem. Ever since I scared him about the 'choke and d-i-e' thing, he's shown me that he cares enough about Kasha to remember to not throw his socks on the floor.

    Now, he just leaves them on table tops.

    And I've officially given up on the dream of winning this sock-battle.

  • Love fills this home. I haven't said 'I love you' to Shane as many times in the past six years as I have said it to Kasha in the past six days. In fact, last night when I said it, he had to stop and ask if I was saying it to him or to her before responding.

    I told him that he can tell them both apart by the way I say it. When I say it to him, human beings can understand the words that escaped my mouth. Whereas when I talk to her, people around me feel embarrassed for me. My baby talk is a little too...annoying.

She leaves in three days and I'm trying not to think about it. Caring for 11-year-old Kasha has pretty much been like caring for a well-mannered, self-sufficient 11-year-old human minus the occasional annoying tantrums a human child could throw.

She's certainly set very high standards for us and we were just saying the other day that now we know what we need to aim for while training our own puppy some day. The hope is that if we ever have to leave our pup in someone else's care, they have as easy and wonderful a time as we did with adorable Kasha.