Monday, April 4, 2016

A Girl and Her Uncle's Dog

Because my mom didn’t have enough to do last week, she invited me to bring the girls to her house on Sunday evening and let them stay until Wednesday afternoon. I know! She’s insane.

I stopped by each day after work and spent a couple of hours with everyone but then went home to a blessedly quiet house and enjoyed several kid-free evenings with my husband.

Not only did she have my girls at her house, my mom also had my eight year old nephew. Both his dad and his step-mom work outside the home and so it was just easier for him to stay the nights at her house during his spring break. And when he’s there, my mom swears it actually easier to care for him if Lyss and Liv are there too.

I don’t argue because they love their time with Gram and with Jax so hey, we all win.

About a week before the kids’ spring break, my youngest brother called my mom. He’d been selected at work to go to Detroit for a week of training. It was a great opportunity for him. But he lives alone with his one year old dog, Axe. Did my mom think she could dog-sit for him?

My mom wasn’t sure how this would work with Livie in the house. Olivia is not a fan of animals. She just doesn’t understand them or trust them. They scare her with their unpredictability and their furriness.

We talked about it a little and decided that Olivia would just have to deal. I mean, she’s going to encounter pets over the course of her life. We could do whatever possible to keep her and Axe out of each other’s way but he couldn’t stay home alone and Mitch didn’t have anyone else to ask to care for him. I mean, it’s not like Tom and I were going to offer our home to a dog when we’d just gotten rid of our kids for half a week!

So they made do. And it was fine. It really was. Sure, Olivia insisted on eating her meals while sitting ON the kitchen table since Axe enjoyed being under the table in hopes of scrapped falling to the floor and she couldn’t stand the idea of him rubbing up against her, or, even worse, him licking her.

Alyssa, on the other hand, because Axe’s favorite person in the entire world. My mom was actually a little worried that Axe might reject Mitch if Alyssa were at her house when Mitch came to pick him up at the end of the week.

This dog followed Lyssie around from room to room. He wouldn’t go outside to pee unless she went out with him. He preferred to be touching her at all times, whether it was lying next to her and leaning on her knee or having his head in her lap. He sat outside the bathroom door each time she went in and closed him out.

It was cute and actually very good for her because Alyssa thinks she’d someday like to have a dog of her own.

Well, she thought so before she spend three days and nights with Axe in her care. I’ve told her for years that dogs are a lot of work; A LOT of work. She didn’t really believe me. I mean, whatever, MOM, we’ve had fish and cats.

After time spend with Axe, she understands what I mean. That dog wouldn’t let her get more than two feet from him before getting up and following her to wherever she’d moved, even if she was still in the same room with him. He needed to be next to her, preferably with her petting him.

I’d say it was a learning experience for everyone. Olivia realized that she can co-exist with an animal in a house (that dog really wanted her to like him too, but after enough screeches from her, he finally just stopped even trying to get near her.) My mom remembered why she doesn’t want a full-time dog of her own and Alyssa is rethinking the whole having a dog of her own thing too.

Once again, we have a win-win-win situation. I love it when things work out like that.

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