I will be the first to admit that I am a crazy dog lady. I spoil my three pups and constantly look at Instagram accounts about dogs or cute Facebook memes about the precious animals. For some people, my love for animals, especially dogs, is excessive and unreasonable, but my puppies really taught me how to be a loving person.
For my 18th birthday, I was able to adopt my sweet Turner.
He was only eight-weeks-old when we got him and all we knew is that he was some sort of chihuahua mix and that I fell in love with him instantly. From the moment I held him the first time, we had an odd connection like he understood everything I was saying completely —and let me tell you that made training him pretty easy.
We are now to the point that I can tell Turner to go to my room to get ready for bed and he immediately runs upstairs and curls himself up under the sheets waiting to sleep on top of my feet. We have this strange connection and it comes from a place of pure love.
Turner is the first dog that is completely mine — as opposed to a family dog — and because of that, he was already so special to me.
Even though he was incredibly special he was still difficult to train, as are most puppies. Having to wake up at 4:00 a.m. every day to him yelping because he was afraid of a crate taught me how to love patiently, even when I am tired and cranky.
Having to constantly clean up his messes because he learned how to destroy stuffed toys from a young age, taught me that even though times can be frustrating that does not mean the love you feel lessens in any way. He really showed me how to love patiently even at times I really did not want to.
Now my most recent adoption is an entirely different story.
My family adopted Romeo when he was two-and-a-half-months old believing he would grow to be a pretty small dog around 20 pounds. But now at the age of eight-months-old, he is almost double that.
Having a big dog teaches you so much. I also left the country for almost two months and three weeks after we rescued sweet Romeo, and having to watch him grow up from miles away was so difficult! However, this experience taught me that love is not something that comes just when you are with a soul every single day.
My puppy barely knew me when I left, but as soon as I walked through the door home he ran into my arms like I had been there every second and I knew he was still the loving puppy I had left at home.
These two dogs taught me so much about how to love in a way that is patient, adaptive and unceasing. Dogs are a huge part of a person's life and knowing I am going to have two fluffy, cuddle-filled best friends for a long time and I can bet that each and every day will bring a new lesson of love that every dog parent will come to learn.