I cannot remember ever being this excited about entering a new year as I am about 2018. Allot has happened leading up to the new year. We’ve moved house (I’ll tell you all about that in another post) and we’ve also decided it’s time to open our hearts a little wider and make the family a little bigger! I know right now you’re thinking I’m crazy since we already have three kids, but I can assure you my mental status is just fine. In fact, it’s a fabmom proven fact that the bigger the family grows, the bigger one’s heart becomes and the more love there is to share.
But, you can relax, because the new family member that will be occupying our hearts and home, while she is indeed my baby, is a fur baby.
You may be sighing with relief, but, Paris, our miniature schnauzer will in many ways be my fourth child. And I’m okay with that. We’ve prepared for her arrival for a long time. We’ve discussed and debated – between myself and Lesley, between us and the kids – and the right time has finally arrived. Jada cannot wait to have another girl in the house, and the boys I’m sure is just happy to have another partner in ‘crime.’
It’s also a very exciting time for Lesley and I. We’re becoming parents again! We’re fully aware of the amount of attention our ‘new baby’ will require, and also the chaos that is sure to follow, but more importantly, we’re excited about all the extra love and laughter that will fill our home. Even though we’ve been discussing getting a dog ever since Jada was born almost 8 years ago, we were just never ready – and it’s very important that you make a big decision like this only once you’re 100% certain you’re ready to make your pet as much a part of your family as your very own children.
Here’s how our family prepared for Paris’ arrival (who is only allowed to come home with us within another 3 weeks from now as she’s still drinking on her mama.)
1. I’m very mildly OCD when it comes to a clean house, so I naturally wanted a dog that sheds very little hair. This is what made the miniature schnauzer so appealing to us at first.
2. We’ve always included the kids in our conversations about what dogs will be a good fit for our family. We would Google images of the dogs, read about their temperament and habits and make sure the kids understood and were happy with the kind of dog we’re getting.
3. The reason we decided to wait until the kids were bigger is exactly for this reason – to involve them in everything from the decision-making to caring for the dog.
4. Our family is big on giving back and our first thought was to adopt, but the Animal Anti-Cruelty League, unfortunately, at the time of inquiry, did not have any puppies of the particular dog we were looking for, and we really wanted the dog to grow up along with our kids. I would, however, recommend adoption as a first option if you are ever ready to grow your hearts and home.
5. We realised that getting a dog is probably the best way to keep fit as they require lots of exercise. Even this fits right in with our goal to stay healthy and active together as a family.
6. We would stop people walking their schnauzers on the beach to talk about their experiences. This has been very helpful to us in making our final decision.
7. Once our minds were made up and we’ve met with the breeder, it was all downhill from there. Although our pup cannot yet join us at home, we’ve already grown to love her immensely, the kids have already agreed on a name and although we haven’t quite pup proofed our home or ran out to the pet store for food and supplies, we cannot wait for her arrival and look forward making beautiful memories as a complete family.
Say hello to Paris our fur baby 🙂
And her gorgeous mum & dad