As you might have grasped by now, this post is about my puppy, Roya. First of all, I have to say that I grew up around all kinds of animals. We always had dogs and cats. To be honest, it was only a matter of time for me to adopt my own dog. In this post I will give you an overview of my experience so far, make your heart jump because of the cute pictures and talk about the process of bonding with a pet.
For starters, I will give you a run-down of how it all happened. A couple of incidents lead to the seed of getting a puppy, being planted in my head. One of them was this girl, that I started to chat with while hiking during summer. She had her dog with her and told me about her experience as a dog mom. In that moment I started imagining myself going on hikes with a puppy by my side. Then, shortly before leaving for Thailand, I told my family that I’ll start looking for a dog once I’m home again. Even though I don’t think they took it seriously, I did, with the only difference of looking while I was still in Thailand. I didn’t plan for it to work out that way, but a friend on my Facebook shared a post of a dog rescue organization “Dogship Bayern”. I didn’t like the dog she had shared, but for some reason (well, the reason was me being obsessed with animals and loving to look at puppy pictures) I clicked on the organization’s page and voilà, there she was. This cute little, beige colored baby. Her chocolate nose and story-telling eyes caught my attention right away. Before I could really think about it, I had already sent a message to the lady that runs the page, asking for an appointment to talk to her over the phone. One thing led to another and I agreed on picking the dog up six days after I would come back to Austria.
About Roya: She was found on the streets of Romania when she was three to four months old. By now she officially is seven months old, but we think she might be a couple months older. I was told that she was “a true Romanian street mix” when it comes to her breed. She had 10,9kg and her shoulder height was 34cm. After two months of living with us, she weighs 16,6kg and grew 14cm, adding up to her being 48cm shoulder height now. The videos I got of her showed that she was a rascal, but also very cuddly. Due to her living in a cage, without much daylight and no grass, whatsoever, she was super shy and scared of everything at first. Male voices and loud shoes were the biggest issues. Since I want her to be my sidekick and come everywhere with me, I immediately started to take classes with a dog trainer. We are half way through our program and the progress she has made already, is great. Roya loves our other dogs and wants to play all day, every day. Same goes for our cats, except the cats are afraid of this huge, barking creature running towards them, so they escape. Going anywhere with her is not a problem at all, since she behaves very well, but at home she is a naughty puppy (stealing food, socks etc).
Before I went to see Roya for the first time, everyone told me that I would just “know” if she was my dog, as soon as I’d meet her, but also, that I would have to be 100% sure, because I’d have to love her for the next 15 years. That put a lot of pressure on me. While it was obvious, that I would take her home with me, I was constantly questioning whether what I was feeling was “knowing” or not. Looking back now, I wouldn’t recommend getting a dog so soon after coming home from such a life changing trip as doing a yoga teacher training, simply because you need time to adapt back into day to day life yourself first. That being said, I’m more than happy having done just that. She slowly made her way into my heart and now I can’t even believe how obsessed I am with her. Over the last weekend, I left her at home over night (two nights, actually) for the very first time and I think I suffered more than she did. Adopting her was the best decision ever and now I can’t even imagine having all the space in my bed for myself anymore (yes, she sleeps in my bed).
Before leaving you with the cutest picture of the sight I wake up to every morning, I want to address, that getting a dog is a shitload of work.
You need to walk your dog. No matter if it rains or snows or the sun is shining. And when you don’t walk them, you will feel the biggest guilt and won’t even enjoy watching Netflix. You are responsible for another life. Before getting Roya I always kind of smiled at people calling their pets “babies” or them “being their mom”, but now I totally get it and absolutely feel the same way. They can’t open their food by themselves, they can’t just go to the restroom when they need to pee, they need you. Don’t underestimate the effort that goes into keeping another living being alive.
Also, they will make you smile uncountable times a day and melt your heart with those adorable puppy eyes.