Getting Out of the Doghouse

| March 19, 2011 | Comments (9)

I am not a pet person. I don’t have anything against animals. I have no problem patting a friend’s dogs a few times on the head and remark that the canine is cute. But the thought of owning anything with turds bigger than a piece of rice is not appealing to me.

Lo and behold, my daughter has started a campaign to own an English Bulldog. Every day for the past week, I have found notes on my bed, computer or at the table. Each plea includes interesting facts about Bulldogs and clever cartoons:

“I think if we had a Bulldog, our family would be closer and more healthy. We could play with the Bulldog. Fetch would be soooooo much fun! Plus, you are always telling me to exercise, right? English Bulldogs are the most loving breed, they love children and are awesome watchdogs.”

Let’s face it, as much as everyone says that they are going to help with the dog, pick up its crap, feed it and vacuum up all the hairballs, I am the one who will be doing all the work.  Our yard is not completely fenced in either, so that pooch will need walking and scooping. No thanks. Now that my kids are 8 and 10, I am finally back to just wiping my own ass. It’s liberating!

Pet lovers: I am not heartless. I really do feel badly when I see my neighbors walking their dogs at 6:30 a.m. in the frigid weather, stooping over a steaming poop. They patiently stand in the rain, waiting for a whiz.

They are selfless. I am not.

I don’t think I could even take my kids outside every time they needed to relieve themselves. Never mind carrying around a Jewel bag of warm, mushy dung. Or not being able to travel. Or the fact that I can barely operate an obedience school for my kids — or husband for that matter.

Maybe all of these thoughts stem from being a traumatized 11-year-old when my dog passed away while my parents were on vacation. Poor Kelly the mutt died begging at the dinner table while my uncle was watching us for a few days. One yelp, thud and giant puddle of pee, and Kelly was gone.

As the oldest, my uncle said that it was my decision to bury Kelly, throw him in the garbage (?!) or bring him to a vet to be cremated. So I decided on the vet route and we brought Kelly to his final resting place. My uncle let me fill out all the papers with our information. A few weeks later, I got a letter from a bill collector: my uncle’s check had bounced! Where the hell was the money for my dead dog? My parents settled the bill and life went on.

“I will try to work my hardest to earn money for the Bulldog and will be more responsible with my actions and items at home and at school. But I think I deserve a dog.”

I also believed that my husband would always side with me and never approve of getting a dog. Not only was he bit in the face as a child, but also he is the son of a mailman! It’s in his blood.

“My brother and Dad are on board, but you aren’t.”


So, once again, I am the mean mommy who doesn’t let them do anything.  I really thought we dodged the dog pound since we own a couple of dwarf hamsters. Apparently not.

“Moooooooooooom, what is the answer?” she begged in person. “Are we never getting a dog?”

“Honey, as Justin Beiber likes to say,” I insert a dramatic pause, “Never say never.”

Judging by her eye roll, I think my daughter just called Bulldog Shih Tzu on me.

For more madness, visit mom-mom-mom.

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Category: New Posts, Parenting

About Karen: I run a certified freak show out of my house and am now offering front row seats at My blog's name was inspired by my son's form of waterboarding: repeating "mom" over and over in the same tone until my ears bleed. View author profile.

Comments (9)

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  1. Maureen McDermott says:

    Okay, Karen. I’ll help you out on this one. First let me say, the early walks aren’t bad. the unconditional love you get back is great. As for the poops, you get used to it. Somehow I’ve become the designated walker and poop picker upper. But Bailey isn’t a big dog so the turd issue isn’t that bad.

    Onto your defense: bulldogs wonderful dogs…for someone else to own. Ron has a couple of bullies. While cute (their ugly mugs do grow on you), they require more care than the average pooch. I dreaded having to watch them when Ron was out of town. Ask Eileen how she feels about cleaning out their ears, wiping not only between the folds of their faces, but their butts. Nightly. They’re prone to infection both front and rear. It’s not a lovely job. Then there’s the drooling. I always wanted an attractive male to drool over me. Until I met Farcus. Oh, the puddles they create. Blach! Then there’s the heat issue. You have to be careful in the summer so they don’t get heatstroke. My brother’s place is wonderful in the summer b/c it’s always cool… for the dogs. Finally, their lifespan isn’t long. Granted we all know we’re not going to have our dogs for 20 years, but theirs is a short one. I hate knowing that time is limited. Kind breaks my dog loving heart.

    So with that ammo to go with, good luck with your case. I suppose one gets use to the maintenance it takes, but I too am sure you’ll get stuck with the butt wiping. And didn’t you say you just started getting used to yours being the only one you wipe?

  2. sfnomore says:

    that is so funny. hold your stand. those dogs are so so cute but are slimmy-drooling cuties. plus I am with you on the free to clean only your own bm.

  3. Shari says:

    I respect your well thought out decision. I’m always amazed at how many moms say, “The kids said they’d help with the dog, but they don’t.” When we adopted our shelter dog, we did it on my terms. I knew he’d be my responsibility. I was okay with that, so we proceeded. If I had any real doubts, we wouldn’t have a dog.

    • Karen says:

      Thanks, Shari. We will see how well my decision sticks. I just took a peek at and there are so many cute dogs available for adoption! Ugh~

  4. LISA says:

    Oh my gosh love the Just Bieber reference!!! LOL
    As for the dog…I love ours but she’s hubby’s responsibility and if that weren’t the case, we wouldn’t have her!

  5. Lisa says:

    I convinced my husband that we should adopt our dog four and half years ago. I just knew that it would make HIM happier — And it has. We were 50/50 when we first got our dog, but things changed once my son entered the picture.

    Now the dog has totally become my husband’s responsibility. I can’t even remember the last time I walked him. I could go days without paying much attention to him now. Makes me sad, cuz I really do love my dog.

  6. Karen says:

    Lisa and Lisa, You are so lucky that your hubbies take care of your pooches. I work from home so I know that I would be on turd and vacuum duties. Which is pretty much how I roll around here anyway!

  7. Dwana says:

    We welcomed our rescued pit when my son was 5 years old. It has been 5 years now and she is my little baby girl. ha ha, and my son’s constant playmate. Great post, Karen!

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