Do You Consider Your Pet A Member of Your Family?

Today’s post will somewhat be a continuation of yesterday’s post. I will give you more of ME!!! But today I am going to talk about my pets. If you think posts about a family member, your pet, is boring then you can take a pair of sharp hospital shears and stick them in your punk ass anus, #PAUSE! and that’s real PLAYA!

Growing up, we were not allowed to have a pet; it didn’t care how small the pet was, my mother’s answer was always NO, sometimes that NO would be accompanied with a slap to the mouth. My mother always said that if we had a pet, that we would not be responsible enough to take care of it. Well, how do know if you never try. I learned a lesson from a very good friend that if you give your children a pet and they don’t take care of it, then you can say they shouldn’t be allowed to have a pet, but how can you say that and you haven’t given them a chance prove it? It’sCody 1 crazy, because most of my friends had dogs and they are VERY disciplined. For some reason my mother also thought that every dog/cat/guinea pig or whatever was mean and had rabies. Some people believe that dog/cats automatically know that they shouldn’t pee or poop in the house. How in the world is that supposed to happen if you don’t teach them? I will admit, that with our first dog, Ace, I did the putting his nose in his pee or poop.

On one occasion, Ace peed in the house and I took his nose and put it in the pee. My wife immediately asked me what the hell was I doing? I said I’m trying to teach him a lesson. She asked me, how many times have you taken him outside so he associates the grass with pee and poop. I said that I took him out this morning. She asked me this question in the evening time. She told me that of course he’s going to pee in the house, he couldn’t hold it any longer. That changed my outlook on how to train a dog. When she told me that, I felt like a jackass, because the dog is going to be scared of me, because I wasn’t showing any affection toward him, all I did was yell at him. I did finally get him house broken and it felt good. I hate it took me doing the wrong thing to start doing things the correct way. Now I’m in the process of teaching my son, Cody and he is doing very well. He does have an occasional accident in the house, but when he does I immediately take him outside. My oldest son, Bentley was taught by my wife and since we’ve been in our house, he’s only had 1 accident. He’s an awesome pet. Very smart, but hyper as hell. Before Coco passed, she was also a great pet. The only time we would have accident in the house was when she was really excited.

Before I purchased a Chihuahua, I was told that they are a very stubborn breed and they are hard to teach. Cody is a Chihuahua and he’s doing an awesome job. I don’t see where the hard part. It takes time and caring for the pet to associate outside for playing, peeing and pooping. What breaks my heart is seeing dogs tied up with a chain and no shelter to hide from the cold or hot temperature, also seeing a dog running lose, because the owner doesn’t give a shit about the pet. In addition to not having the ability to run around or having an owner show that pet any type of affection, I never see a food or water bowl. Those individuals should be treated how they treat that dog. Some individuals don’t understand that a pet should be treated as a member of the family. Whether you believe it or not a pet has feelings. That may sound crazy to some, but it’s true. If you don’t or have ever owned a pet, you don’t understand what I am talking about. Living in the South, the heat with the added humidity, no one wants to be outside. Wouldn’t you think that pet that is left outside feels the same way?

Here’s a little history on the pets that I have had in my life. While my family and I were stationed at Fort Polk, Louisiana, I went to the Dog Pound located on post and just so happen, that morning they had picked up a Chocolate Lab. This little guy they estimated to be at least 3 months old. He had a white spot on his front left paw and front left paw. We named him Ace. He was an awesome dog. Amya was about 8 months when we got him, but Ace would sit where ever she was, if she was on the couch, he was laying on the floor right below her. I was chosen to go to a detail in Alexandria, Louisiana, and I would be gone for approximately 2 months. After Cody Updated Picbeing gone for about a month, my wife came up to see me, we talked and she told me that Ace was acting weird. I said how, she said that he would only eat maybe 1/4 of the food he was given. The weather at this time outside was very humid and hot, so we thought that maybe his time spent outside was too much for him, so we decided that the only time he would be outside would be for him to handle his business. We had purchased a nice dog house for him, but we didn’t think he liked it, because he was always sitting or laying outside his house.

Coco (Blog Picture)After my wife and I talked about it, she brought him in the house, but she said that it got to the point where he wasn’t even eating his food. All he would do was drink water. After she told me that I told her to take him to see a Veterinarian. The Vet office on post didn’t open until 7 and the one in Leesville, Louisiana didn’t open until 9. When she explained the situation to her Squad Leader and Platoon Sergeant, they released her early from P.T. so she could take him to the Vet. After she was released from P.T. she arrived home to find that Ace had passed. He threw up and defecated a lot of blood. She called me crying and I already knew what happened, she took him to the Vet any way so he could be cremated. After talking to the Vet, the Veterinarian had come to the conclusion that he died from Parvo. If caught early, it can be treated. The Veterinarian told her that even if he was alive when she arrived, we caught it too late and he was going to die anyway. I think about it all the time, what we could have done and what we didn’t do. As I said, Ace was cremated and to this day, we still have his ashes. We don’t have any intentions of spreading his ashes anywhere. He goes where ever we go. It came time for me to re-enlist, but I had come down on orders to go to Germany, but at that time I didn’t want to go, so my Command Sergeant Major got my orders changed for me to go to Fort Benning, Georgia.

After arriving to Fort Benning and being there for a year or so, a friend of mine had a litter of Chow puppies and asked me if I wanted to at no charge. I said hell yeah. After bringing him home, we named him Chase, in memory of our first family pet Ace. (Chase and Ace Rhyme) Anyway, Chase needed a lot of attention and a lot of space to run around. Everyday after work, I would go out and play with him and on the weekends I would play with him and take him for lengthy walks, but he needed more attention than what we were giving him. Our backyard at Fort Benning wasn’t that big, well big enough for him and the attention we were giving him wasn’t enough, because he was bored, so he started digging holes. Angie said the best thing we could do for him, was to give him to someone who was able to give him the attention and space he needed. I remember that my brother was looking for a dog so I called him and asked if he wanted him free of charge with food and bowls for food and water. My brother took great care of Chase, until someone stole him. I think my brother told me that someone eventually shot him because he was snapping at and biting people. It hurt that someone had stolen him from my brother and to hear that he was shot, because he was allegedly snapping at and biting people. I don’t believe that. It’s because whoever stole him didn’t have the balls to take care of him. It was time for me to deploy to Iraq and my wife didn’t have to worry about a pet while I was gone, was the ONLY good that came out of this situation. After spending 12 months in Iraq I finally re-deployed.

One day we happened to be talking about pets and she remembered that while she was growing up, her family had a tan Dachshund and his name was Franky. She told me that Franky was a very loyal dog, but was stolen by her next door neighbors as they were moving. Her father let him out to handle his business and he never came back. She knew that her neighbors had taken Franky, because one of her close friends told her about a dog who looked just like Franky. Her friend called his name and Franky came running to the fence. Angie’s parents didn’t want to go through the hassle of getting him back so they told her that they would get her another dog. I took all this information and put it in my memory bank. After our conversation I started looking to see if there were any Dachshunds in our area, there were some near us, but the prices ranged $500 – $2,000. I looked all over the internet for about a month, but became disappointed and almost gave up on the search.

019Bentley Updated PicOne day while looking through some ads in the back of the local newspaper, I noticed an ad in the back that stated, Dachshunds for sale. Call for pricing. I called thinking that I was going to get a ridiculous price and she says that she has 2 males and 1 female. She said that she didn’t want to get rid of the female, but I was welcomed to come over to look at the black and tan males. I asked how much they were and she told me $200.00. I asked her to repeat the price again and she stated $200.00. I said I would come over to see the dogs immediately. I told my wife that I needed to go to the store to pick up something. She said okay and I left. I had arrived at the lady’s house, but thought I was in the wrong place, so I called her on my cell phone and told her I think I’m lost.

She asked what color my car I was driving, at the time we owned a yellow Dodge Neon, after I told her that she said, you’re sitting in my drive way. I said awesome and introduced myself, then she invited me in. She brought out all three puppies and placed them on the couch. I attempted to pick up one of the males and placed him in my lap, but he didn’t want to sit in lap, he wanted to be with his brother. As I am talking to the lady, Coco walks up to me, crawls up on my lap, curled up, got comfortable and was just chilling. I told the lady that I found the one I want. She said that she really didn’t want to get rid of her, I then raised the price to $250.00 and she said okay. She gave me all the paperwork to go along with her. I asked if she had already given her a name, she said no. After receiving all the necessary paperwork I left. On the ride home I wrapped Coco up in a towel. I pulled up in the driveway and my wife asked me , why I had been gone so long and she wanted to come out and help me. I told her no, I don’t need any help. She walked in the house. I made sure Coco was well hidden in the towel. When I walked in the house, I called everybody to the living room. I told my wife that she might be mad, because I told her that I bought something. She said what did you buy? I slowly unwrapped the towel and she immediately started to smile. She then asked how much was she? I told her the price I paid and she couldn’t believe it.

Bentley PuppyAt this time my girls were only 1 & 2 and they were so excited. I asked her and the girls what they wanted to name her, but they couldn’t come up with a name, so I decided to name her Coco, because at a quick glance she looks brown, but she was a Red Mini Dachshund. Coco has been to Germany, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York & Connecticut. Before I deployed to Afghanistan in May 2007, My Wife and Girls went back to CT. She came back the following June, because I  was set to arrive in July. At this point we still had 2 years left on my overseas tour, so I was in the rotation to go back to Afghanistan. We deployed right after Thanksgiving of 2009, then I was injured on April 25, 2010. After recovering enough to PCS, I was on orders for Fort Stewart, Georgia. I told Angie that I wanted to get a Miniature Male Dachshund before we left so Coco would possibly have a mate. We looked and found someone that had some for sale. We drove about 4 hours to pick the little guy up only to realize that he was a full size Dachshund. We still bought him. At this point, Coco was in the states with Angie’s parents. After leaving Germany in January 2011, we went to pick up Coco. When we arrived she immediately knew who we were, she was so excited. I’ve never experienced a feeling from a pet such as this. It was like finding an old friend that you haven’t seen in a long time. I didn’t think that you could get that same feeling from a pet. The feeling was amazing. The only thing that was wrong, Coco was extremely overweight for her size, which caused a lot of medical problems. It was due to Angie’s Dad letting Coco eat whatever she wanted. They had a cat so instead of Coco eating her own food, she would eat all the cats food, in addition to my Father-in Law feeding her table food. Coco was FAT! I’ve never seen a dog with rolls in their coat, but Coco had them. We weren’t mad because they had welcomed Coco in and treated her as if she was their own pet. After spending 2 weeks in CT, we made our way back to good ol’ Fort Stewart. The housing list was ridiculous, so we decided to buy our own house.

We moved in and about 1 year and a half of being living in our new house, our girl Coco had passed. We knew something was wrong with her. We took her to a local Veterinarian and we were told, some vertebrates in her back which had damaged her spinal cord, but was damaged beyond repair. Approximately 3-4 months after the Vet appointment she stopped eating and she could barely move her back legs. We decided that we needed to take her back to the Vet so maybe they could give her some pain medication and set her back end up on some wheels. The next morning Angie left for work and I got up to get ready to take her to the Vet, but Coco had already passed. We all were upset, but my girls suggested that we should place a garden where she was buried and that’s what we did.IMG_3477

I know that this post is lengthy, but if you have a pet, you treat that dog/cat or whatever you have as a pet, like a pet, but as a family member. I know that we do. Growing up I never thought that I would love a dog as one of my own children. I love my boys, but we do miss Coco. She was definitely a part of this family and is missed every single day. As americans, some of us seem to treat pets as if they are irrelevant and treat them any kind of way. They have feelings and the way you treat them, they will treat you the same way.



One thought on “Do You Consider Your Pet A Member of Your Family?

  1. Family member to me are those who are willing to sacrifice their own time, worth, tears, blood, etc. and never ask for a return of the sacrifice made. So my blood related family sometimes isn’t as big as my family. However with animals especially dogs there is a specific way you must conduct the family order. Breed above all is the most important thing to consider before you purchase a dog. You need to know who you are truly before you just go out and buy a small or big dog. Knowing their normal habits and demeanor, to how their pedigree looks from generations back. Don’t take offense, but I will never rescue an animal nor purchase one with out first knowing their history. Yea every shelter has a bio on the dog but it’s not a true reflection of their parents, grandparents and so on. Dogs do pass their demeanor in their genes. Anyone who thinks different, I can drop an A-bomb of knowledge on you about it. I’m a breeder of one of the most fear and sought after breeds in the US, possibly the world. The first thing I learned before getting my first APBT was, is this a direct reflection of me? That’s really what matters most. It’s like marriage, if you are looking for that 10 and find her and only mary for looks, well you let me know how your life feels after a couple years in that relationship! Anyways, although I consider my APBT’s family their is a defined pecking order. They are at the bottom. I am pack alpha leader never to be tested! My wife is my beta, and my kids are next in line. With that order established my dogs know biting is a no go. Along with rough play. The first thing I tought my some when we got Onyx was never lower yourself below her eye level or allow her to bring you down to her level. Simply bc it’s a dominance thing. Losing a game of tug as well is something I will never do with any dog. Once that’s solidified everything else is easy as for in home. Now socialization with other animals is key as well. Unless you want to be that guy with the dog who is always snapping at other dogs you have to meet and greet a lot. Otherwise recipe for danger is building. Positive reinforcement is essential in training a dog anything. Once most of this is accomplished for me, I now have a dog that has the ability to pass the good canine citizen test. Going back to my family explaination in the beginning, once my dogs reach this level of understanding I know they will literally kill you or anyone or anything else that attempts to harm my PACK! If I can’t play rough with my own kids it’s sure sign that there is zero tolerance for anything else to bring harm to my family. For my PACK I will sacrifice all and so will they. That’s family!

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