As posted on New Year’s Eve, we lost our first dog, Pucci, to old age and disease. Paul and I were both surprised by just how difficult that loss was. And for a while we swore we’d never have another dog, to avoid having to face that pain again. Then I saw the sign while on an recent evening walk: chihuahua puppies for sale; need a good home. I walked on. After passing it a few more times, I realized the sign was for pups inside the house by the tree it was posted on. My curiosity piqued, I knocked and asked if they were still available. They were — the owner brought them out and I loved them. So small, so cute and although sibs, so different. Kind of like bats, but without wings! I thanked the owner, went home and told Paul about them, and tried to forget how I felt when I saw them. Didn’t work. We kept talking about them and I suggested Paul ask to see them, too. He was busy and never found the time to go over. In the meantime we talked about how much we were enjoying not picking up after a dog. Well, how much Paul was enjoying not picking up after a dog, per our Pucci-era arrangement … anyway, at the end of last week, when I was finally feeling better, I offered to go over with Paul to see the puppies. And that was that: we saw, we held, and ultimately bought, our first puppies. Meet Frito and his sister, Inky.
Frito — golden, with a pinky underlay — is very different from his sister. Both were born February 2nd, but like a tiny worried pitbull, Frito’s face features wide-set eyes rimmed in pink and topped by a scowl, with a pink nose to match. Tinier overall, Inky’s face is more delicate, with a nose so tiny it’s hard to believe it’s functional. Personality-wise, the sibs are at opposite ends too: Frito is needier emotionally and relentless in his pursuit of attention. His sister is mellow by comparison, and more sensitive, retreating to their shared pen/bed at the slightest expression of disapproval.
They both love to play together, although that play can get pretty rough at times. They run after us in tandem and according to Paul, have shared stalking, then eating a centipede. Inky has shown an over-the-top affection for succulents by nibbling my recently-acquired mangave (somehow avoiding being punctured by its sharp spines). They’re also engaging in some alarmingly bawdy behavior with each other, but I’m trying not to impose my human morality (while at the same time hoping we get them spayed and neutered in time!). They love to cuddle with and lick us and go nuts whenever we appear after being away. We’ve only had them a week, but already their high-pitched squeals, as we confine them to the other end of the house for bed, are subsiding. They’re settling in and we are too. Yes, Paul’s picking up after two dogs now, and I’m sharing those duties, although not as much (he is”retired” after all, and around more often!). We still remember Pucci, and sometimes will even call these new poochies by his name … but we didn’t choose him, he chose us, appearing one day in our yard. Frito and Inky are with us now and we decided they should be. It’s a decision that feels as right as seeing them asleep draped over each other — it’s just natural.