A few weeks ago, I was sitting in bed, playing a game on my Kindle, trying to relax enough to fall asleep when Art walked into the room.
“You’re never going to believe this,” he said.
Great, there goes any chance of falling asleep at a decent time. I set down the Kindle and looked at Art. “What happened?” I asked as politely as possible.
“You have to come out and see,” he said. So I put on some sweats and followed him out into the dining room. Lying on the table was a blue blanket wrapped around some kind of bundle. I peeked inside and this is what I saw:
At first, I thought it might be some kind of rabbit, but then I realized it was a puppy. The puppy we had specifically told Bud he could NOT have for his birthday because we are losing our house and trying to find a place for one of our other dogs.
“How is it that we have a puppy?” I asked, as politely as possible (I swear I never even raised my voice).
“Don’t be mad, Mom,” Bud pleaded. “Aspen’s mom gave him to me for my birthday.”
Seriously? She gave him a dog without asking us? What do we do, send it back?
Well, I took one look at the sweet little face, almost raccoon-like, and my mama instinct kicked in. It turned out the puppy was a rescue. His mama and her litter had been found on someone’s front lawn and fostered for six weeks by a very nice lady in Stockton. Aspen and her mom had adopted the pup as a present for Bud.
“What kind of dog is he?” I asked.
“He’s part corgi, part beagle (corgle),” Bud replied.
“And part raccoon,” inserted Art.
“Or part Mogwai,” I laughed (we have no idea what breed his father was). Update 2/13 – we have since decided that Kiff’s father must have been a border collie. He loves to herd anything he can find, cats, Katie, cats, people (if we let him).
It turned out that Aspen and her mom were more than willing to co-parent the puppy. We took him overnight, since his other grandma (Aspen’s mom) works early mornings and Aspen goes to public school. Then Bud would take him over to their house once Aspen got out of school. Art and I wanted to name him Gizmo, after the movie Gremlins, but Bud named him Kiff (an alien in the TV show Futurama).
I went into this new venture assuming that I would be the main caregiver for Kiff, and I am the one who gets up with him in the morning and entertains him/snuggles him/feeds him/cleans up after him until everyone else wakes up. But we have held Bud to his promises. He takes Kiff with him when he goes out (as much as possible). He and Aspen have paid for all of Kiff’s vet bills and most of his food, pee pads and toys.
In addition, after having to give up one of our other dogs due to the imminent move and some behavioral issues, Kiff has been such a blessing to our family. Our older dog, Katie, is adjusting to the new puppy, and enjoying her new princess status (since Kiff is an indoor dog, Bud got Katie a nice bath and she is now indoors as much as possible – which she absolutely loves!) For the rest of us, focusing on this tiny one who NEEDS us so much, has definitely helped distract us from some of our other problems, and also to bring us closer together as a family as we negotiate responsibilities and decisions. Bud is Kiff’s “dad” and he makes most of the decisions regarding the puppy’s care. Art and I try to only step in where we are needed – I guess it is good practice for the (hopefully distant) future when we have grandchidren.