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Family waits with open arms for newest member

So, the cat, er, dog, is out of the bag again.

Last week I let you in on our little family secret.

The Secret that has four legs and barks. He is currently serving prison time and is expected to be out in mid-March.

Not because he is a bad-news dog, but he is taking part in the eight week P.E.T.S. (Pets Educated to Survive) program through the Clark County Humane Society.

Through the P.E.T.S. program, our new family member will receive basic obedience training before coming home to the welcoming arms of our children, specifically our 7-year-old son.

A few weeks ago we almost came home with a beagle, but I just couldn’t do it. My son was heartbroken, but it just wasn’t the right time.

An animal rescue volunteer suggested we look into prison dogs. “Hmm. That sounds ominous,” I thought.

But to the animal shelter we went.

“Look how many animals there are that still need homes,” I said as we toured the Humane Society.

My son — still upset about the beagle — was quiet as a mouse.

We spoke with a shelter coordinator who also suggested a prison dog for our family.

With three kids in the house already, we were not in the market for a puppy (“Mom! Bingo ate my Legos and buried Sissy’s Barbie doll in the garden!”), so we looked at a picture and information about a dog currently in the P.E.T.S program.

After some further homework and a call to our vet, the little dog in the picture, about a year old, became the apple of my son’s eye. So we put in our pet adoption application.

P.E.T.S. graduation day in Mid-March can’t come fast enough.

Our son is saving his pennies to buy a collar and toys for his new BFF and every day he talks about what he will name the dog.

We have offered up a plethora of ideas for the small, pointy-eared dog with a brindle coat: Amigo, Baxter, Dexter, Diego, Tango, Bailey, Nacho, Luigi, Mario, Jaxon, Snickers, Reece, Spot, Sam, Rocky, Lucky, Dingo, even Pickles.

My son had narrowed it down to Kody, Toby or Felix, but then announced he wanted to name the dog Benson. We will see if it sticks. There is plenty of time yet.

Akin to waiting out the final month of a pregnancy (and I have some experience with that), I’m gearing myself up for this next adventure: another, albeit hairy, child, another mouth to feed and another round of potty training.

Per the P.E.T.S. program though, Benson/Kody/Felix should be fairly well mannered, maybe more so than my kids.

Hmm … I wonder if they are accepting new students?

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