We’ve Had Our Dog for a Year, These Are the Things She’s Taught Me

 In Life

A year ago, almost to the day, my partner and I went to pick up our little 12-week-old puppy, Abby. While she was a tiny ball of energy, I shared my experience with the piece; 5 things you should know before getting a dog. Now, at 15 months old, and a slightly larger ball of energy, I want to share 5 things my Abby has taught me over the last year.

The Top 5 Things My Dog Has Taught Me

abby dog1. Patience, patience & more patience

Whether it’s toilet training, obedience training or when your dog is acting possessed (YouTube search “zoomies”) patience is key. I’m one of those people who gets frustrated when they can’t get something right, even if it’s the first time I’ve tried it. After going through puppy training, I’ve learnt that things don’t happen right away. They take time, repetition and a lot of patience. Abby has taught me to stop, breathe, and keep on keeping on.

2. We can’t have nice things

Maybe it’s different with older dogs, or outside dogs – but having a young, inside dog means things your things are going to get eaten. Table legs chewed, carpet ripped up and couch cushions clawed. Until she’s a bit older, we’re not buying anything nice or new.

3. Responsibility

Having a living creature that relies solely on you to survive is a big deal (ask any parent). You’re not just in charge of feeding them and making sure there’s enough water; there’s exercise, socialising, playing and grooming. You don’t just want them to survive, you want them to thrive. Sometimes people forget that even though your dog is just one part of your life, to them, you’re their whole life.

dog friends4. Appreciating the little moments

When you’ve had a crappy day and you come home to an extreme level of excitement and love, you can’t help but feel happy. Walking Abby in nature without headphones. Learning a new trick. Playing. The excitement of getting into the car to go on an adventure. These are all such little slices of life but experiencing them through the wonder of a little dog is something else. Seeing her run around Victoria Park, chasing birds and playing with her friend Flynn just fills my heart.

5. Unconditional love

Even after I’ve just given her gross medicine she needs; she’ll still follow me around the house. Whenever I sneeze, she jumps on top of my head and licks my face, just to make sure I’m okay (weird, I know). I yell at her when her barking pushes me to breaking point, and all she does is jump up on my lap and give me a kiss. The love that a dog gives to its owner is something very special and should never be taken for granted.

Having a dog isn’t always easy. But the way they enrich your life makes it all worth it.

Are you a dog parent? What has having your dog taught you over the years? Let us know in the comments or share with The Jane Community over on the Ask My Friend Jane Facebook group.

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