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New family member Waffles his way in

Every kid needs a dog, right?

Somehow my 7-year-old son convinced me of this. And then he managed to get his brother and sister on board with the idea.

“We promise we will take care of it! Plllleeeaassseee?” Picture wide, pleading eyes.

We’ve had a lot of “stuff” happen in our family recently. Not life-altering stuff, but just stuff: the never-ending pile on.

Like we needed one more thing to worry about, but after a particularly eventful day I caved, “Yes. We can get (another) dog.”

I grew up with dogs. I’ve always had one, sometimes two.

My husband? Well, he had cats. Enough said.

We had the Dog Discussion via text messages. I kept the texts (as proof he was in agreement), one in particular: “Get the boy a dog.”

I admit to having butterflies in my stomach and worrying that I (we) had made a bad decision, but I had six weeks to mentally prepare for our new arrival.

Waffles (yep, really his name) came home last week with a folder full of paperwork and a journal from his trainer/handler.

His trainer was an inmate at the Allen Correctional Institution in Lima. Waffles is a graduate of the P.E.T.S. (Pets Educated To Survive) program through the Humane Society Serving Clark County.

We jokingly considered renaming the dog Pickpocket. But, quite frankly, he’s very well-mannered, and we just can’t stop calling him Waffles.

He is potty-trained, crate-trained and does basic commands.

Perhaps I’m wearing rose-colored glasses, but, despite the snarky glares from our other dog, Waffles has made himself right at home.

He allows the Princess to walk him around the house all day long, loves to cuddle, respects his elder canine companion and makes himself cozy at my feet while waiting for the boys to arrive home from school.

And when those boys walk in the door Waffles is 15 pounds of instant fun. Afterschool snacks and TV are forgotten. Computer time replaced with tug-of-war. And at bedtime kids and dogs are zonked out together.

I know after some passage of time this blissfulness may not be so blissful, but for now I’d say: Not only does every kid need a dog, but also every dog needs a kid (or three).

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