Acquired: Other (stray, given dog by friend etc.)
Posted August 24, 2015
I first met Poochy when I came home from school and found her in my front yard, barking like I was the intruder. She had a collar, but no name tag, so I took her around the neighborhood, trying to find her owner. Spoiler alert: I didn't.
Like all of the stray/shelter animals I've had in my life, Poochy came with some emotional baggage. She was terrified of tall men, and she was even more terrified of being left alone. I'd leave to take out the garbage and come back and she'd greet me like I'd been gone for hours.
For all that, she was a happy dog. She adored almost everyone she met; she was an ecstatic bundle of energy. We'd let her out into the backyard and she would run like the world was made of pure, distilled joy. She wagged her tail so hard it could leave bruises.
But she wasn't a good fit for my family. We didn't have the energy to play like she needed to play; we preferred to just sit around and read books or watch tv. And once I got into high school and started doing theater, she was increasingly left alone in the house for hours on end. She got lonely; she started having accidents in the house, to the point where the wood floors were getting stains. Eventually, we had to give her up for adoption at a no-kill shelter.
I loved that dog. I still love that dog, but loving her doesn't mean we were able to give her what she needed. One of my biggest regrets is the fact that she suffered so much loneliness because we did not consider her temperament and how it would mesh with the family when we adopted her.