How a dog changes your life

Getting a dog

Very recently, I decided I will get a dog. I’ve always wanted one and never had it and even if judging it rationally I don’t really have time for one, I’ve decided some time back to trust my intuition more and my intuition was telling me I should finally do it. Now, I am the happy owner of a Shih Tzu called Lluna (moon) for about 4 weeks and every day I feel more and more attached to her, and amazed at how smart and cute and happy she is.

After I have left my parent’s house for college, it never appeared to be a good moment to get a dog: I was always away at work during the week and travelling during weekends, it was hard to grow one in an apartment, I was very busy and so on. It felt it was never a good moment for such a responsibility. And even now, I still don’t think it was the perfect moment to get her, but I also learned there isn’t such thing as a perfect moment to get a dog. You create the perfect moments, you adapt and improvise, but above all, you learn to live in the present and be happy with the way the present turns out (which interestingly might just be the present you also wished for, that perfect one).

Since getting her, I am reminded all the time to live in the now – to enjoy her cuteness, to play with her, to watch her sleep. This is how I learn to also appreciate the good things around me now, to be happier with myself and therefore authentic and beautiful for the significant ones around me.

So here I am, getting a dog in a definitely not a perfect moment, but the constant joy she brings makes everything worth it. True, I’ve realized my time is us time now, privacy means having two eyes on you asking you to play all the time, and it will likely be so from now on. But she’s very keen in sleeping or watching me while I write, or read or cook and so on. She definitely hates the vacuum cleaner so she literally hides as far as she can while I clean.

Training her to pee and poop on the right spots and outside, giving her treats when she does what I try to teach her, seeing her manage her way out of little troubles she gets in – besides being funny, they also give me confidence I could be a really good and patient mother when the time will come. I have a lot of friends and colleagues telling me a dog is a training for a kid.

But definitely, Lluna has changed my life quite a lot and probably she will continue to do so as she grows up. And if you see the positives in all these changes, getting a dog can be one of the best decisions in your life. What before seemed to be responsibilities hard to deal with, now they seem normal things you do with love and care.

First change is about the schedule. She’s up before 6 am. I struggled waking up so early, even if I wanted to, but now she makes it all possible. As soon as she sees me open my eyes, she starts jumping with joy and making noises (as she can’t jump into the bed yet) – so I have to wake up and play with her. Suddenly, mornings have become bright, with a lot of happy moods and laughter. And together with this, my productivity in the mornings. After playing, she sleeps in my lap while I go on with my work.

Soon she’ll be allowed to go outside, so walking her twice or more per day will mean good exercise. I plan to go running together with her, so that we both stay fit and trained.

Taking care of her – cleaning after her, remembering to give her food and water, training her, taking her to the vet for the periodical vaccines and treatment – means developing my sense of responsibility. Living with an independent partner doesn’t compare with having someone depending completely on you – and learning this only boosts your confidence. That you can actually do it, and it feels great too!

When I come home from work I am usually tired and in a not such a good mood. When I come home now to Lluna and see her and play with her – I become energized and my mood changes into a really good one in a matter of minutes. I love her for that – as she sleeps and rests while I am at work so we can play when I am home.

After an hour or so her battery runs low again and she needs sleep and rest, so I am free to do whatever I want – but with my spirits high and mood lifted. It’s just amazing how she manages to do this.

But most importantly, she teaches me how to stop thinking about the future and enjoy the present. She’s happiest when I am there with her and either play, or sit, or hold her or allow her to sleep next to me. As long as she sees me, she’s happy – and she enjoys that moment to the fullest.

A dog also teaches you what unconditional love is – no matter what I do, or what she does wrongly, she still hopes for a loving gesture from me. She hangs around, she make me laugh, she is the happiest when she sees me around and isn’t afraid to show that by wiggling her tail in the cutest possible way.

Articles around the web also suggest some other benefits of having a dog, such as:

  • Less allergies
  • Feeling less stressful
  • Detecting cancer early on
  • Less chances to be depressed
  • Chances of general illness decrease
  • A more active social life

Enjoy some pictures of Lluna and if you love dogs and have always wanted to get one, do that now and don’t wait for the perfect moment. You cannot imagine the way moments will become just perfect when that creature becomes a constant joyful part of your life.

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