Acquired: Other (stray, given dog by friend etc.)
Posted April 20, 2015
We didn't really plan to have a dog; our house was already as messy as it was. But one morning, when my mom went out to go to the bakery down the block, a stray puppy followed her home, even made his own merry way into our house. He was a total dirtball plagued with fleas but my mom washed him, and that was basically how we got the dog named Champ.
We guessed that he was 2 months old when we acquired him. He used to be a really bad puppy, chewing off slippers, and peeing and pooping inside the house, exactly where we told him not to. He also was too hyperactive and went around biting everyone's toes and scratching everyone's legs (I had my fair share of scratches). We knew these bites were playful though sometimes the bites were too forceful. My dad even resorted to cutting off his two front teeth to avoid serious incidents because we were kids that time. We did our best to control him, but he recognized only my dad as an authority figure. When my dad was not around, he went back to his hyperactive, uncontrollable puppy self again.
And then he grew up, and he changed. I'd like to think that he kind of "matured." I don't even think we did anything drastic or significant. It just kind of happened. As he grew up, the hyperactive playful bites turned into cuddles and licks on the face. He stopped constantly running around the house and eventually resorted to staying in one place at a time: wherever his mat was laid. We let him play with our neighbors' dogs but he mostly preferred taking walks to the park with us. After a good while of training and scolding, he finally understood where he could relieve himself (at our backyard) and even tries to bury the poop (we had to wash off his nose a couple of times). Generally, he became a sweet, reserved dog who barks at visitors and strangers but is easily stopped when told to stop.
Now he's 8 years old and is perfectly accustomed to living a life with humans. Sometimes his behavior makes me think that he's not an animal. I prefer thinking he isn't.