July 18, 2008 I bought my own townhouse.
September 18, 2008 I adopted my first dog, a mutt at a rescue that I named Tessa.
Until we met Mike (current husband!) in June 2010, it was me and Tessa. She went just about everywhere with me, she was quite literally my shadow, like dogs usually are. Once we did meet Mike, it was the three of us out and about, checking out parks, going on walks, watching Netflix. She wasn’t necessarily the world’s best dog, she had separation anxiety and could be quite the diva on a regular basis, but she was my ‘furry BFF’. Due to her high maintenance tendencies I was always a nervous that if she couldn’t live with me, she would have a hard time. As if no one else could love her the same way. Please know, we did multiple traininga with very highly respected trainers, but she still had this way about her that could make her hard to love. I made a promise to her that I would always do what was best for her so she wouldn’t be scared or confused or in harms way.
Fast forward a few years, and we have Jake, to whom I promised I would always keep safe. For the first few months Tessa seemed jealous, but generally okay with the new guy in the house. She even started guarding his door when he was asleep, (if she wasn’t barking at the leaves or rabbits and waking him up!) In mid-October when Jake was 14 months old our worst fears came true though, Tessa was asleep on the couch and Jake ran by. He didn’t see her until it was too late, she cut his lip and upper cheek. We rushed to the ER for stitches, and while I sat sobbing on the hospital floor, I knew two promises I had made would be broken.
As soon as Jake went down for a nap that day, we started reaching out to who we trusted in the dog world about what to do next. It was decided no amount of training would prevent a dog from being a dog. We 100% knew we had to keep Jake safe, yet life with a muzzle on was not fair for Tessa. So we made the impossible decision to put her down. She would wear her muzzle until our appointment at the vet to keep Jake safe and began to plan her final weekend of meals. For days I couldn’t look at her without crying, it was the worst week ever. Then, out of nowhere my in-laws called, and wanted to take her! My Tessa girl would be safe in a new home with no other pets or kids. We couldn’t believe it, and were beyond thankful. She gets the attention she needs and deserves, and they love her like we do. They took her to their home over two months ago, and everyday I feel like someone is missing around the house. I still find myself in tears over it on a regular basis. The first Thanksgiving without sneaking her Turkey, and the first Christmas without her stocking full were awful. Just as bad though are the regular days where she’s not sitting on my feet and I don’t hear her little paws continually walking in my shadow. I’m glad she is safe and we can visit when we travel back to NY, but I wish with all my being there was a way to have all my babies living under the same roof in harmony.