2014 is now in the past and so are the rest of my unfulfilled promises of greatness. Hope…hope is an evil and amazing thing, all at the same time. So like every other human being, I’ve made resolutions for the new year, and since it’s January 1st, I have every intention of keeping every single promise I make to myself in the next 24 hours.
So I know I’ve visited this subject many times and I want to do so again, for good measure and in hope that in these words perhaps I find my own answer. To work and to tend to a family is really hard work. Let me not confuse you further, I have no children. I live with my partner of 9 years and our two furry dogs and I call this my family. Like every other couple, we have goals. We want to, one day, be property owners. We would like to travel to different parts of the world. We would like to one day walk down the street and have our dogs not bark and snarl at strangers. You know, just like what any normal human being wishes for. The first two, like a lot of things in life, requires money. Lot’s of it. So we do what we can to save money to put towards our future endeavors. But when you try to save money, you must deduct from somewhere else. It’s a constant transaction of time and money. So to save money we cook at home a lot, try to eat out only once a week and to help us towards that effort we purchased a small chest freezer for our 720 sq. ft. apartment. Chris and I were lucky enough to have been raised by awesome stay-at-home moms who devoted themselves to cooking for us. So there is absolutely no pre-made food in our home. So while we have that going for us, we do try very hard to keep down our intake of restaurant food. We also have a dusty ass apartment that covers itself in layers of dust every 2 days. It’s impossible to keep up with! So no cleaning help here (boo hoo, right?). We wash the dogs weekly and groom them every 1.5 months. That saves us a lot of money and but its takes up a Saturday afternoon and we all know those are sacred.
Do you ever measure how much it’s worth to do something based off of how much you’d want to waste your precious Saturday afternoon doing it? Saturday afternoons are currency and I find that there is rarely anything I’d spend my precious currency on. Maybe there is something wrong with me, but that’s another blog post.
So where am I going with this? In our pursuit of monetary goals, we spend all of our precious free time preparing extra meals for weekdays, cleaning, grooming dogs, exercising them and exercising ourselves and it all just makes time melt away. Sure, I’ve created a million schedules where I try to squeeze in as many chores as I can during the week, before and after work but it.just.never.works.out. Which has made me wonder if I’m lazy. Another blog post perhaps.
The point of all this rambling is that I didn’t just push my personal goals and pursuits to the back burner, I pushed them so far off they’re not even on the stove! Although we take good care of our dogs, I fear Ellie’s behavioral needs have been pushed off. I fear Argos’s socialization has also been pushed off . First, before any smart-ass goes on about what a poor dog owner I am: My dogs are safe dogs, they are healthy, eat very well and get plenty of exercise and attention. The problem is, they don’t like other dogs and/or their people. So this my resolution list:
New Year’s Resolution 2015
- Understand Ellie’s fear
- Socialize Argos more
- Hike our local dog friendly trails to expose both dogs to nature and other people (I’m thinking once a month?)
- Post on this blog twice a week!
It sounds like an easy task list but #1 is going to be the toughest thing I do in 2015. Ellie barks and growls at strangers and their dogs, at people making loud noises and does not like people she doesn’t know approach her. She has never bitten or attempted to attack anyone. It’s all fear. She is apprehensive of everything and everyone and pulls away and retreats to ‘safe’ places. But I keep reading everywhere that fear can turn into aggression if it continues to go unaddressed. I have tried thundershirts, bark collars, and treats. What you will read in this blog is what I have found out through each of these methods.
Come with me, as I share with you my adventures, my struggles and my love of these two mutts.