Keeping a Promise to Get a Dog {How to Make Your Kids Uber Happy}

by GfG on July 21, 2014 · 2 comments

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When our lives took a sudden unexpected and unwanted turn, we had to find a home for our three kitties.  The camp dog that we loved on and cared for had died out of the blue just a month or so before that, so we didn’t have to find a home for her.  On top of all the pain was the loss of our pets.

While the kiddos wanted to get more, we knew that living in a rental with six kids was already a challenge for most landlords, so adding pets was a bad idea.

We also knew that our lives were going to be in transition for awhile.  As in, for a few years.  We didn’t want to get pets only to have to give them away again, since we didn’t know where we would end up after transition (and one of us was praying for the leading to go overseas).  We promised the kids (and Paul made me promise him) that we would get a dog when we bought a house.

That brings us to last December.  No longer in transition, but still in a rental.  That ended on the 12th, when we bought a house.

The entire ten months of house shopping involved so very much, including evaluating the house for a dog.

This house was set up nicely for a dog, including a doggie door to the garage and one from the garage into the laundry room, for inclement weather.  A six foot fence with barbed wire on top.  Lots of shade.  Almost an acre.

We talked as a family and decided to wait until after winter to get our dog we we could get to know her well before the snow hits.  Taking camp into consideration, we aimed for July.

That brings us to today.

Today, we have a dog.  Her name is Emma and she is an answer to prayer for all of us.

The kids really wanted a puppy.  Either gender. A friendly dog.  Sweet.  Smart.   Good family breed.  Can do tricks.  Likes snuggles.

I really wanted a three year old. Female.  A friendly dog.  Sweet. Smart. Good family breed.  Well trained.

Well, all the requests except the puppy part were answered!

When I saw this on Facebook, posted by a homeschooling mama of eight, I thought we had found our match:

This is very hard to post! We regret that we have to find a home for our beloved Emma. We will be moving to ABQ in the fall and can’t take her. Emma is a fantastic family pet! She is a 3-year-old Australian Shepherd (no papers). She is spayed, house-broken, and knows some tricks. She loves kids, loves to go for walks, likes to play, and gets along very well with other dogs. We are looking for a specific kind of home for Emma. $50. Please message me if you have any questions, would like to meet her, and we can discuss the possibility of her becoming your family pet.


I pmed immediately and then called.  I described our home and our family. The owner was so kind and asked more questions.

We were leaving the next day for camp, so I told her we could talk in a week. If she found a better match, I would understand.

I didn’t mention sweet Emma to the kids.

The day after our adoption class (we went straight from camp to two days of adoption classes… yes, Paul loved that as much as you can guess), I called.  The family had decided that we were the right place for Emma!

So… I took the kiddos to meet her, for confirmation.

It was precious.  Our kids were all grins.  Emma was shy and a bit nervous.  She did a trick.  I saw how well trained she was.  The kids saw how sweet she was.

Phoebe and Emma

We knew it was going to be a good match.  So, we went home and set a date to get her two weeks later, giving her first family a chance to say goodbye and giving her second family some time to get her new home ready.

She arrived yesterday.  We did our best to make Emma feel comfortable and at home.  We had at least one person be with her all the way to bedtime.  We gave her treats and hugs.

Am I super excited to have a dog?  No. And yes.  I am nervous about the amount of work, cost, and gross-ness (I really don’t like dog hair or dog body fluids of any kind), but I am thrilled to watch my kids get their dog.  And I know it will be good for us all, despite the extra work and cost.

Are the kids super excited to have a dog?  You betcha.  Three of them considered sleeping in the garage with Emma. Three of them were up before 7:00 to be with her.  So, I think things are off to a good start.

Chloe and Emma WEB

Do you have a family dog?  What kind? 


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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

PrincessR July 21, 2014 at 6:00 pm

That is SO amazing!!! What I love even more is that I know the family who had the dog originally and they were really hoping for a good family for Emma….which they got. 😀 Love seeing how things worked out. Love it!!!


Teresa in Texas July 21, 2014 at 6:10 pm

Congratulations on your new dog! I hope that she is a sweet blessing to your family! it sounds like you got a great one!

For a couple of years, my husband and then 7 year old son desperately wanted to get a dog, but I didn’t. FINALLY, I said, “ok, I’ll think about getting a dog, but it has to be small and I want one that doesn’t shed too much”. The boys started scouting and found a german shepherd mix that they fell in love with. Against my better judgement, we adopted the dog, and as it turns out, I guess my judgement was flawed…he’s been the best dog I ever could have imagined. We’ve now had him for 7 years. Yeah, he’s big and sheds (like crazy in this Texas heat!), but he’s oh so good and a sweet companion. Two phrases that I remember my son used to his advantage in convincing me to get the dog were “if you’re not going to get me a brother or sister, the least you could do is to get me a dog!” (he’s an only child) and “Mom, I really think that the Holy Spirit wants this dog to be a part of our family” :-)


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