Should we adopt Brenda the brindle? This question has been at the forefront of my mind for the last 48 hours. I go about my business, trying to picture life with a dog at my side. It's raining, I need to walk her anyway. I'm reading a book - wouldn't it be fun to have a cuddle partner? Where would she sleep? Where would she eat? Would the cats ever forgive me? Ooh, I bet she'd make a GREAT running partner!
I've asked numerous friends and the odd stranger on the street what they think I should do. The answers I receive are of little help. Everyone who owns a dog says, without reserve, that they are fountains of unending love and they can't imagine life without their best friends. "Yes, you should do it!" these people tell me. Yet many of these same people admit that once their current dog passes, they're unlikely to get another dog, at least anytime soon. "Too much work," and "Ties you down," are the phrases I hear repeated.
There's a reason I don't have kids. And my reasons for not having kids are very similar to my reasons for thinking I shouldn't get a dog. Selfishness tops the list. I can't emphasize enough how much I enjoy having my time be my own. If I need more reasons, there are:
- Making the cats lives miserable
- No idea how to train a dog
- No fenced yard (fixable)
- Logistics. This is a big one. I often go into Greensboro for 5-8 hour days. Who will let the dog out? What if I travel? Blair routinely works 10 hour days and has a 35-minute drive home. What happens to the dog? Or our carpets??
- Travel. Big and small trips suddenly become a big deal. We can leave for a weekend right now and have the cats fend for themselves. That's a luxury we lose with a dog.
And finally, making a 14-year commitment to be the guardian of an animal based on an emotional tug worries me. I may get a dog someday. I think, in fact, that I do want a dog someday. But I'd like to feel a little more in control and prepared.
So all logic and common sense point to no dog. Bad timing, and just because I want to step in and be a hero and rescue this dog does not mean this is the right answer.
I look around the house and picture a spoiled Brindle, sleeping on a cushion in the corner of my office. I imagine going for slow jogs around the neighborhood as I teach her to jog at my side. I hear the click-clack of doggy nails on hardwood, following me from room to room.
I'm 99% sure the answer is no. No dog right now.
But we'll see.