They say “he’ll bite”

IMG_6475Two summers ago, I was cuddled up with my Momma on the couch (she was breaking the rule – no dogs on the couch… don’t tell dad). I noticed that she had become a little big fluffy and she was walking with a waddle and wearing clothes that hid her new fluffy belly.  I did not know it then, but my life was about to change.  On that summer day, I met my puppy brother.  In fact, I remember the exact moment it happened. My Mom was petting my head and telling me how handsome I was. I had started to fall asleep and then it happened… he kicked me right in the head.  You could say we had an instant connection. A short time after, my mom was put on bed rest.  At the time, I was not allowed upstairs (where the bedrooms are). Clearly, their “rules” have changed because now my big bed is right next to theirs. When my Dad would leave for work, I would sneak up and lay on the floor at the end of her bed.  I don’t think she knew I was there for the longest time, but I had to make sure she and my puppy brother were going to be okay.

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A few weeks later, they brought him home and my heart exploded.  Just like the day my parents rescued me, I felt pure joy and happiness.  He was my puppy, my heart, my soul, my world.  I knew that from that day forward, I had to protect him, teach him and watch him grow. Never did I dream my family could change so much by someone so little.  I watched my parents love him the way I loved him. They gave him everything he needed.  My heart was full because my family was happy…my brother had arrived.

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It took some getting used to at first.  He pooped, spit up and cried… a lot.  I tried giving him a few of my toys, but that didn’t seem to work. My parents let me sniff and lick him when I wanted.  They were doing their best to give me the love and attention that I needed with this new little one in the house.  Just like the days that my mom spent on bed rest, it was my mission to guard him with my life and sneak a kiss or two in.  The people coming in and out of my house to see my new puppy brother made me nervous.  I may have growled at a couple if they made Carter cry. Nevertheless, I was trained to be gentle and never bite, especially with Carter.

image_1I understand why people would be nervous of a handsome rescue dog being around a baby.  Unfortunately, there are cases of dogs getting new puppy brothers or sisters and not being able to adapt.  It is not only big dogs or rescue dogs, but I am sure this has happened with many different kinds of dogs.  In my case, I had been trained and socialized. My cousins were the first children I had been around consistently since I was a pup and they taught me that children give you their leftover food are loving and fun.  I enjoy watching them grow and love them immensely.

image_25So when I hear “he’ll bite” I know they must be talking about my puppy brother, Carter, biting because his teeth are sharp I would die before I would bite.  I know that I was put in this home to be a best friend.  I did not know that I would find my best friend here.  I am so thankful to be able to call Carter my puppy brother.  My love for him is unconditional…he can pull my tail, drink water from my bowl, scream in my ear and I will always love him.  Carter makes my time enjoyable and my heart melt.  I know that he, like most puppies, will grow out of being rough, but what people may not see are his incredible kind and loving ways.  I know that little boy is going to grow up and do great things.  I can only hope that I am right there beside him exploring this big, big world to watch him learn and grow. I want to see the pure innocence and joy that is in a child’s eyes viewing the world for the first time. I want to be there to lick the tears away when he falls and to be the one to pick him up.

image_14 2So please remember, it’s not a breed or a rescue/shelter dog that bites. It is truly case by case.  Don’t automatically judge that I bite just because you see me playing with my baby.  Everyone plays differently and my parents would ship me off never allow me to hurt my brother.  With that being said, please be smart when a child and dog are around each other.  As for parents looking to adopt/rescue, DO NOT be discouraged because the dog is a “rescue” you may be passing up on your child’s greatest friend.

Woof,

Toby

For more photos/videos of Carter and Toby please visit: instagram.com/carterandtoby

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3 Thoughts

  1. Thank you for this. We’re expecting our baby in several months and am working towards our rescue boy Parker feeling comfortable and OK with the new addition. We’ve had him for over a year and he’s just the sweetest dog and loves children (especially when he figured out that toddler guests love to share their food!), but we’re still a bit nervous about how it’s all going to work out. If you have any tips for a future blog post, that would be great!

    1. Liz-
      Thank you so much for your comment! Best wishes with your little one on the way! After this post, a follow of Carter and Toby’s Instagram suggested this article for warning signs and when to step in between your baby and dog. I found this extremely helpful. Ultimately, you will know when your pup is needing a little extra love or feeling uneasy. It’s a transition for everyone. We moved Toby’s bed into our room so he could be close to the baby (since he showed signs of anxiety when they were apart) also, this showed him that we still loved him and he wasn’t being “replaced”. Try to make some extra alone time with your pup (when you can) after the little one arrives. Best of luck! Can’t wait to hear how it goes 🙂

      1. Thanks so much for pointing out the link! We’re planning on showering him with lots of additional love, plus my mum is coming over and meeting him for the first time, and there is no question that he will absolutely LOVE her (even if he doesn’t pay much attention on Skype :)). Really enjoying the addition of your blog!!

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