That’s all we have been hearing for the past 18 months…
When we moved to Australia back in 2010 we promised the kids that we would get them a dog to help them settle in. So shortly after we moved here we got them a Maltese Terrier puppy which we called Bailey as he was the colour of Baileys – the Irish drink.
Bailey was nuts and made our life a living hell…getting the kids ready for school became a nightmare as Bailey hid under the bed with the kid’s school shirts or ran away with their undies in his mouth.
Bailey dug holes in the garden that BHP mining would be proud of…
To prevent this we ended up putting baby gates all over the house with the result it was like living in a gated community and we ended up prisoners in our own home.
Taking Bailey for walks was proving a really difficult task as he would drag you along with the result that the kids couldn’t walk him – which defeated the whole purpose of having a puppy. If we let him off the leash as we risked occasionally doing he became impossible to catch.
He was also great at raiding peoples picnics – a couple of times in Centennial Park he burst through romantic couples picnics and brought us back a range of miscellaneous goods including a block of cheese, a packet of crackers and someone’s jumper. While we would laugh the romantic couple who had just had their bottle of wine knocked over and their cheese, crackers or jumper stolen didn’t find it so funny.
The dog wash guy in Centennial Park told us never to bring him back again…
Another time he got into the local oval while footie training was going on and ran away with a couple of baseball caps…meanwhile, I had these big footie players chasing after me and my “effing dog”.
Yes you might be saying he just needed some obedience training, we tried that with a private puppy trainer – she gave up after two sessions and wished us the best of luck!
“That was the last we saw of her as she ran out the front door with her tail between her legs.”
Unfortunately, Bailey’s life came to a sudden end as he broke off the leash and got hit by a car and was killed instantly, however, I don’t think Bailey was ever going to see a long happy life as he was a bit crazy. I guess though this is the risk of buying a puppy from a pet shop window, so if you are thinking of buying a puppy I would strongly advise against buying one from the pet store window.
So you may ask why did you decide to go through the whole puppy experience again – well D2 has been plaguing us with for the past year with “Please can we get a puppy”, non-stop questions about why not, Powerpoint presentations (when she should be doing homework) and letters about the 10 things why having a dog is good for you and “When can we get a dog” etc.
This has been made all the more difficult since our neighbours dog who we used to mind have recently moved back to Germany taking their dog with them, so we lost our regular dog fix.
Having discussed with Wifey we decided we were not up for having a puppy as the kids would be leaving home in a few years and we’d end up stuck with a dog tying us down in our retirement years!
Coincidentally while watching breakfast TV one Saturday morning before Christmas Guide Dogs NSW came on as their volunteers were offering a gift wrapping service in Westfield Chatswood in return for donations, however, the presenter had this cute little guide dog puppy and mentioned they were also looking for puppy raiser families to foster a guide dog for a year.
This is how it all started…
Got Christmas all wrapped up? Head to @WestfieldAU #Chatswood where our volunteers are offering a gift wrapping service til 21 December. Your donation will help our work providing services to people with sight loss. #guidedogs #christmas #giftwrap #charity #donation @Monika_Rad pic.twitter.com/Y49lqKk6Dw
— Guide Dogs NSW/ACT (@GuideDogsNSWACT) December 9, 2018
Voila – puppy problem solved while also doing some good in the world.
We ran it by the kids who were more than happy to participate in the guide dog puppy raising programme and we completed the forms online. There’s us thinking ok that will bide us some time and will keep the kids quiet for a while. Nect thing as they say we got a phone call from Guide Dogs NSW to book an inspection and were told we should have our guide dog puppy early in the New Year – talk about things moving fast!
The inspection and presentation went well, basically they come out to inspect the garden to ensure the puppy is not in danger of injury or can’t escape, as these puppies are worth about $35k by the time they are finished the programme and to run through a presentation to outline what you are up for and the commitment you have to make.
I did have some homework to do and block some possible escape routes that a small puppy could escape through and to fix the garden fence – something which I had been meaning to do for the past 3 years anyway so this gave me a deadline to get it done as I had to send photos of the completed work.
Beforehand – move flower pots that were blocking the dodgey gaps in the fence
Work in progress
The final puppy proof garden bed
Meantime there is great excitement in our house at the moment as the thought of getting a new puppy becomes a reality.
If you are interested in either making a donation or joining the guide dog puppy raising programme please contact Guide Dogs NSW or your local guide dog association in your state, territory or country to help this worthwhile cause that will make a big difference to someone else’s life.
Don’t forget to check out my blog post to meet our new guide dog puppy…