I Said Yes to the Puppy

Puppy Announcement

“Do you have to go potty?” “Good job going poopy!”

These are phrases I haven’t uttered in five years. I thought I was done raising little ones.

Then we got a puppy.

After years of our kids begging, pleading, compromising, even giving us their money to buy a dog, I finally caved. Last week, we surprised our boys with a puppy.

I say “I” because my husband has been on board all along. He grew up with dogs in the house. I, on the other hand, did not.

Perhaps it was because I grew up on a farm in my early years. We had farm dogs, which meant they lived outside. NOT inside.

Or maybe it’s because I have a fear of animals. Not sure how this manifested, but it’s reality. And dogs can sense this. I’m usually the first one they jump on when we meet.

Did I mention we have three sons? They are amazing little people, but are about all I can handle most days! I knew I would be the one who ultimately would care for this pup.

Bringing a dog into our home was never going to happen.  

Family, friends and neighbors have been telling me for years we had to get a dog. They’d say, “Kids need dogs” or “Animals help kids learn responsibility” or “Research shows pets help kids develop kindness and empathy.”

And on and on and on.

So when I FINALLY had a slight hesitation rather than my usual ‘No’ when the dog question arose yet again, my husband ran with it. We literally booked an appointment to look at puppies that week.

What had changed? I can’t pinpoint it exactly, but a lot of prayer happened along the way.

Choosing a Puppy

I had certain criteria for a dog: non-shedding, hypoallergenic, smart, playful, cuddly and A GIRL. This house needs more girl power!

We already knew the breed we wanted, a Coton de Tulear. We had met a particular Coton years ago and loved everything about the breed. Lucky for us we found a breeder nearby.

And so the journey began.

After all the ‘no’s’ I’d given our kids, I decided if we got a dog, it would be a surprise to our kids. So my husband and I snuck away one morning to look at puppies. I kept telling him, “Just because we are going to look at dogs, doesn’t mean we are going to get one.”

Famous last words.

The breeder brought out three Coton puppies and after observing and holding them, we knew right away the one we wanted. The breeder had named her Juliet.

We put down our deposit and headed home. For seven weeks, we didn’t tell a soul we would have a new member of our family soon.

Several thoughts kept racing through my mind. Mostly negative ones like, “What in the world are we thinking?”

I was in denial we were getting a dog. A deposit didn’t mean we had to go through with it…right?


During this time, the breeder sent pictures of ‘Juliet’ growing. Each time we saw her, our hearts melted a little more. It seemed more and more real that she was going to be part of our family.

4 week puppy

4 weeks

6 week puppy

6 weeks

8 week puppy

8 weeks

Bringing Home Puppy

The week we were to pick up our puppy, I hardly slept. We were adding a new family member to our clan…which is a big deal!

Then pick-up day finally arrived. Besides a kennel, we were completely unprepared to bring home this puppy. However, our breeder had a puppy ‘starter pack’ we could buy that would give us everything we needed.

When we reached the breeder, I was nervous to go in. What if the dog wasn’t what we expected? What if she was hyper? What if she didn’t like us?

This is what we saw when we arrived.


We were instantly smitten.

When the kids came home from school, we had a box waiting on the front porch with their ‘name on it.’ We rigged a video camera to the window to film the whole thing.

Their reaction upon opening the box is one I’ll remember forever. First, they were dumbfounded (why is there a dog in here?), then disbelief (is this a prank?) and finally pure joy (you got us a dog!).

The kids can’t wait to see Ivy (what we named her) first thing in the morning and right after school. I’m sure this will change as the newness wears off, but right now they are in a state of total bliss.

As for me, I’m still getting used to our new normal. There have been plenty of frustrations having a new puppy, but there has also been plenty of joy.

And that’s what matters.

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