Husbands and Dogs

First, I want to thank everyone for your kind, supportive words. It’s been a rough patch and your compassion and sensitivity have been much appreciated. You guys are the best!

One of my favorite dog-loving friends and I were talking about how our dogs have changed our husbands as well. I think it’s safe to say that Kiera is the first dog Andrew ever completely bonded with. And so he’s been just as deeply affected by her loss as I have.

My friend, Judy, lost a dog that changed her life not that long ago too, so we do the only thing people can do when they can’t possibly feel an ounce sadder than they already do–they start telling funny stories. And Judy is one of the funniest people I know.  I thought you might enjoy a little levity about her partner and her beloved (albeit very difficult) rescue dachshund.

I should preface Judy’s story by explaining that when she got her dog from rescue, he had major aggression problems. I don’t know many people who would have put as much into Reuben as she did–he would have been undeemable for pretty much anyone else. But Judy fell in love, and Reuben was saved from an otherwise terrible fate. By the end of his life, Judy had worked miracles on turning him around. Anyway, that’s all another story for another day. Here’s Judy’s tale about her partner and Reuben. And if you have a funny partner/dog tale, please share too.

“Haa, Reuben tolerated Brian but certainly didn’t bond.  Brian was very good to him but Reuben was Reuben.

However he absolutely adores Olive (Judy’s corgi). A lot of times I will see him carrying her around and kissing her; you can’t help it she’s just 10lbs of sweetness. And he is great with Archie (her other dachshund) too and often the two will go to the park without me.

There was one time in the early days of Reub and Brian.  I was having my kitchen remodeled and the only place cleared off to eat was the table on the deck.  I brought out the sandwich stuff and placed it on the table and left Reuben and Brian alone out there (always a mistake when food was in the picture).

I heard the growling and ran out and asked what happened and Brian said “I picked up a piece of bologna and he went berserk.  Haa, Reub used to always try to bully Brian if I was out of the room.  So now when I say “awww don’t you miss Reuben? he’ll say ‘I don’t miss him trying to steal my bologna.”

The very first night they met, I had Reub in his crate in another room and told Brian how to react “don’t look at him don’t talk to him, do not react no matter what he does, let me handle him”.  So I let Reub out and Brian said “Isn’t this how things went terribly wrong for Ziegfeld and Roy?

So Reub comes out and is about a 4 on a scale of 10 as far as agitation.  I’m telling him to “leave it” every time he looks or goes near Brian and all is going well.  After a few minutes I leave the room and from the kitchen I hear fabric being tugged/pulled/wrestled.  I run back in and Reub has Brian’s jeans in his mouth by the ankle and is tearing in to him to get to skin.

I could not believe that Brian remained calm during that.  ha…he really did not want to risk me throwing him out I guess.  And of course, Reub made a mark with his teeth on his skin.  It got much better over time and they could hang out with each other comfortably, but Reuben always had the “Don’t push me Brian, you know what I’m capable of” look.”


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