We've been exploring different dog rescue organizations. Some time this fall we promised the girls we'd adopt a new dog. The different rescue groups have websites so we're able to research their adoption requirements, applications and fees. We're also able to see the types of dogs they have available at any given time.
It has been good for the girls to realize that the dogs they liked last week have been adopted. I like that they see these dogs finding "fur-ever" homes as the rescue groups like to say. I like that they realize now that just because they like a dog doesn't mean they will get it. I explain to them over and over that lots of people are looking for dogs, which is a good thing. We want the dogs to get adopted.
We've been discussing the types of dogs and ages for a while now. The brunette twin wants a puppy. She has Uncle Steve on her side. She emailed him recently to let him know she appreciates his efforts to get her a puppy. The blond twin wants two dogs. She clearly remembers Daddy telling her that we might get two dogs.
Every time we look at a rescue organization's website both of these become major negotiating points. I don't want a puppy. Dogs that young need to go out every three or four hours -- 24 hours a day. I don't want to get up in the middle of the night to let the puppy go outside. I don't want to deal with the puppy chewing stage. I also know that it's harder to place older dogs, even dogs that are a couple of years old. My preference is to adopt a dog that is a couple of years old.
We looked at one site with about a dozen dogs around six months old. If we're going to get a puppy, I'd consider one about six months old. Those puppies don't need to go out in the middle of the night. They are ready for training. The brunette twin isn't convinced. She wants a tiny, squirmy puppy.
The blond twin has started negotiating for an older dog for her and a puppy for her sister. What she wants is to end up with two dogs. She knows if she lobbies for the dog I want and the dog her sister wants she has a better chance of succeeding.
I have to admit it's a good strategy. She really thought through how to get what she wants. She doesn't ask for a specific dog, but rather thinks about the big picture.
In the end I don't think either of them will be happy at first. I don't see us getting two dogs, but if I had to choose, we'd get two dogs rather than a puppy. Of course, when we finally decide on our next dog they will be thrilled. It's one thing to want something in abstract. It's another thing to have a live, playful dog begging for your attention. In the end, the live, playful dog will make them forget all the negotiations -- at least that's our plan.