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April 15, 2010

Toby's Third Birthday

(Photo Credit: Ryan) 

My "little buddy" yorkshire terrior Toby turns 3 years old today.  This dog is the world's sweetest most outgoing pup in the entire world so he deserved his own birthday post. After all, you can't show favoritism amongst your kids, right?

(Photo Credit: Ryan)

I got Toby the summer before my second year of law school.  My thought process was this: I had always been a huge dog lover and had spent my entire life waiting for the age in which I could handle a dog.  My dreams of moving to New York and becoming a big time lawyer were over- I didn't like New York and I didn't want a big time corporate legal job.  What I wanted was for my life to calm down, I wanted to be closer to my family and I wanted to work on creating an "adult life." I don't know what "creating an adult life" means for everybody else, but for me it meant finally getting a dog of my very own.

(Photo Credit: Ryan)

I rationalized getting a puppy during that summer because (1) I was living at home for the summer, so my Mom could watch a new puppy during the day while I was at work (2) The firm I was working for was literally one mile from my house, so I could sneak home often for lots of attention and walks.  (3) I was in law school, which meant for the next two years I would be home often during the day to take him outside and get out all that puppy energy. 

(Photo Credit: Ryan)

I made a lot of mistakes in my first puppy adoption.  I knew I wanted a small dog because I needed a pup I could keep in an apartment.  My family always got rescue dogs growing up, but seeing as I was in Idaho you can't get a small puppy at a shelter.  Nobody has small dogs thus all the dogs in shelters are big farm dogs.  So I went through a breeder who was kind of far away, who seemed really nice, but I never visited her place (mistake).  She agreed to meet me halfway to get Toby, and the second I laid eyes on him I was in love.  He was the fluffiest SMALLEST sweetest dog in the entire world.  There was just one problem. 

(Photo Credit: Ryan)

He didn't move. Like, at all. He didn't run around. He didn't chase things. He didn't bark.  He just slept ALL THE TIME. The breeder warned me it might take awhile for him to warm up to his new environment, so when he went a couple days without eating much I was nervous but told myself it had to be normal? I tried everything to get him to eat. He wouldn't eat hard food, so I bought 5 different kinds of soft food and tried to get him to lick it off my fingers.  Nothing.  I was in a constant battle with myself.  He was only two pounds, how much do two pound dogs eat? It can't be that much, but surely more then this.  Finally I took him to the vet for his first week check-up a couple days early.  I told the vet the problem and the second she laid her hands on him her eyes got very concerned.  She explained to me that he was literally starving himself to death and she didn't know if he was going to survive

I am pretty sure my heart stopped beating.  Right there. 

Even to this day it brings tears to my eyes.  I felt terrible.  I was kicking myself for not bringing him into the doctor earlier.  All I could think about was how I would never, ever forgive myself if this precious little puppy died in my care. Ever. 

The vet brought in some soft food that she said had a really high fat content that they fed to dogs that were really sick and losing weight.  She claimed that even really sick dogs would eat it because it tasted so good, but that if Toby didn't eat any they were going to have to put him on an IV. She popped open the can of food next to where Toby was laying and what did that little stinker do?  HE JUMPED UP AND ATE THE WHOLE CAN. I tried five different dog food brands and could never get him to eat anything, but that food? He gobbled it down with no hesitation.  I have never been more happy in my life to see that ball of fur stuffing his face.

From that day forward he has been a little ball of energy. He is now a whopping five pounds, loves to go on long walks, play in the snow, and be on your lap at all times.  I was in love with my new constant companion.

One of the prerequisites for me to date anybody was their love for Toby, so when I started dating Dan shortly after starting school that year I was pleasantly surprised at how attached Toby was to Dan (and vice versa).  It actually made me a little jealous to see Toby suddenly disregard me and follow Dan around like, well, a puppy.  Yet Toby is a big reason why I knew I liked Dan, as one of our first conversations revolved around our mutual love for dogs and how we both planned on having lots of dogs when we got older (que Kadira).

Its weird to think that Toby is now three, just because three years ago I was in such a different place in my life.  But oh what I joy this little dog brings to me on a daily basis.



Rachel said...

Amazing how one little dog can make such a big impact on your life, isn't it? Makes me happy :)

Happy Birthday little Toby!!

mmclaughlin said...

I could never have been with someone who didn't love dogs either. They are the best company, and it's so nice to have the unconditional, uncomplicated love of a dog. Happy birthday to Toby!!

Brittney said...

Toby is so cute! Happy Birthday to him!

Natalie said...

Happy birthday Toby! SO cute!!!

missris said...

He's such a cute dog. You're so lucky!

Michelle said...

I feel the same way about what constructing an "adult life" means, but I know that moving to LA and putting "must be dog-friendly" as a restriction on apartment hunting is probably going to cause me a huge headache. Another problem is that I just LOVE big, big dogs. The bigger the better. Sigh.

agalandherdog said...

My Yorkie just turned 6 and I can't imagine my life before her. They really are the best dogs (even if they are a little bossy). Toby is too cute! Happy Birthday to your little buddy!

Miss Madison's Mommy said...

What a good post! Happy Birthday! He's soooo stinkin' adorable I could eat him with a baby spoon!

Life of a Doctor's Wife said...

He is such a cutie! I love the photo of him in the snow - adorable!

What a sweet post in honor of his birthday. ;-)

Kristin said...

Happy happy bday to your adorable little fur baby!

Sara said...

Oh my gosh, I am in love with your dog! He is the absolute cutest! Happy birthday Toby!


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