Love Story

It’s Valentine’s Day, time to get mushy!  I am not the most sentimental person, in fact, I like to steer away from hugging and gushing and proclaiming my feelings. However, some things need to be expressed.

When I first met my husband, I was a single gal living in an apartment by myself in Rochester, NY.  My apartment complex didn’t allow for pets, but I convinced them to let me bring my rabbit, Stormy.  I loved dogs, but I knew that apartment living was not right for a dog, so I made myself a promise: I would work hard and save for a house with a yard.

Well, my husband came along and he fell in love with Stormy and me.  He loved dogs too, and since we were living in two different cities while we were dating and engaged, we decided to wait for a dog. We both grew up with dogs and were excited to have dog complete our little family.

As some love stories go, next came a wedding.  I looked high and low for the perfect words to be said on the day, but I didn’t want to choose something typical or too mushy.  Then, I found it:

How Falling In Love is like Owning a Dog

First of all, it’s a big responsibility,
especially in a city like New York.
So think long and hard before deciding on love.
On the other hand, love gives you a sense of security:
when you’re walking down the street late at night
and you have a leash on love
ain’t no one going to mess with you.
Because crooks and muggers think love is unpredictable.
Who knows what love could do in its own defense?
On cold winter nights, love is warm.
It lies between you and lives and breathes
and makes funny noises.
Love wakes you up all hours of the night with its needs.
It needs to be fed so it will grow and stay healthy.
Love doesn’t like being left alone for long.
But come home and love is always happy to see you.
It may break a few things accidentally in its passion for life,
but you can never be mad at love for long.
Is love good all the time? No! No!
Love can be bad. Bad, love, bad! Very bad love.
Love makes messes.
Love leaves you little surprises here and there.
Love needs lots of cleaning up after.
Sometimes you just want to get love fixed.
Sometimes you want to roll up a piece of newspaper
and swat love on the nose,
not so much to cause pain,
just to let love know Don’t you ever do that again!
Sometimes love just wants to go out for a nice long walk.
Because love loves exercise. It will run you around the block
and leave you panting, breathless. Pull you in different directions
at once, or wind itself around and around you
until you’re all wound up and you cannot move.
But love makes you meet people wherever you go.
People who have nothing in common but love
stop and talk to each other on the street.
Throw things away and love will bring them back,
again, and again, and again.
But most of all, love needs love, lots of it.
And in return, love loves you and never stops.
-Taylor Mali
Mali. Taylor. “How Falling in Love is like Owning a Dog.” What Learning Leaves. Write Bloody Books.

Check out Taylor Mali’s Website

From the outside, it might have seemed like an odd choice for a couple who didn’t even have a dog yet.  But we knew, it wouldn’t be a long.

Puppy Love

Fast forward 6 months and Geronimo came into our lives.  It was surprising to see Grant so eager about bringing this specific puppy home.  I wasn’t surprised though, that when Mo started to exhibit some challenging behaviors, Grant never wavered in his love for that brown and white pup.

Geronimo having a moment with his dog dad

So, I want to thank the man I married.  I know my life needed to be filled with dogs and Grant accepted that fully.  He opened his heart to Mo and later Lawrence.  He cheers me up when I’m bummed about a bad reactive episode with Mo, he supports me when I tell him I want to work toward my dog training certification, he laughs when Larry steals a banana or Mo finds his way on top of the kitchen table, he spoils them with fish skins, and he tells me it’s all going to be ok.

Love Letter

Dear Grant and all the Dog Dads and Dog Moms,

Thank you for supporting us and our dogs.  You have our backs when life gets messy and it will get messy; I’m talking about sick dogs, potty training dogs, and flinging poop.  You also lift us up when life gets us down because there will be a day when we have to say goodbye to our dogs.  And you are there by our sides, laughing, during the awesome moments of swimming at the lake, howling at the top of our lungs, and dog kisses.

You are willing to share the attention, for you know it is difficult for us to resist those puppy dog eyes and a furry cuddle.  And lucky for our pups, you hardly blink an eye at the money we spend at the pet store.  More than that, you know that we are happy and would do anything for us.

We love our family, dog and human alike because it is warm and beautiful.  We love you and we are grateful for your love.


Joelle and all the Crazy Dog Partners and Spouses

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