Aiden and I went to the vet several weekends ago for his annual check-up and shot renewal. The vet is stressful for all parties. Stressful for Aiden because anything other than getting some lovin’ at home, going for a walk, getting a treat, or going to the dog park is stressful for him.
He’s stressed in the car on the way over. He’s stressed in the waiting room (and sheds everywhere!) and if I don’t keep him on a short lease he disrupts the other dogs. His tail is in between his legs the whole time we’re meeting with the vet because he’s forced to get close to this strange human.
The experience is stressful for me because I feel like a terrible dog mother. Gosh, why didn’t I remember to furminate my dog before coming here so we didn’t create these tumble weeds in the waiting room? Aiden, please just listen to me this one time and get on this scale. I promise you belly rubs for the rest of the day. Do I really have to pick you up and place you on this thing? They ask about his diet. Oh, you mean I’ve been feeding my dog the worst dog food on the planet for years (Beneful)? Then they ask about his activity. Uh. We have a dog door that leads to a tiny back yard….does that count? (No, that doesn’t count which is why I don’t actually give that answer.) But this means I also don’t really know the answer to other important questions about how he’s doing because I’m not walking him.
I’m not even a dog person. I plotted to kill my family dog when I was in high school, so I never imagined I’d sign myself up for another dog in my lifetime. (That’s a true story, by the way. I fed that dog chocolate and even, very briefly, convinced a fellow drama club member that he should help me take that dog out. It was serious at the time but it seems terrible and awful to admit now.) Then I met Sean. We had the. best. first. date. ever. Until he introduced me to his dog. It wasn’t really going to be a deal breaker but it kind of almost was. After three plus years of being together I’ve really grown to love Aiden. He’s a very sweet dog. He’s also very whiny but very sweet. So I wasn’t expecting to experience such guilt over something I didn’t even want. It seems so obvious now, but it’s taken a long time for it to click that I’m partially responsible for Aiden. That Aiden is a living thing that requires someone to care for him more than just feeding and petting. That I need to pay more attention to how he’s actually doing. So with this new revelation I’ve made a resolution. I’m going to try very hard to take Aiden on more walks and to remember to furminate him more regularly and be more patient with him when he jumps all over me when I come home everyday. This is my end of Q3 2013 resolution. You can have those, right?