I was practicing dirt bike lessons every hot day in the summer in full gear. We had just moved into our new house in the country. The summer days were so hot all the time. I would get super hot, so I would take a lot of water breaks. Riding my dirt bike allowed me to think about different things. I started thinking about a new dog and how fun it would be to have a new dog. I told my parents we should get a puppy, they thought it was a good idea. I loved the idea of a puppy. That night I couldn’t stop dreaming about a new dog. If my parents got it, I would be so happy. Getting a puppy was all I could think about and every time my parents asked me a question, I would answer with something about a new dog.
My dad said, “What do you want for lunch?”
I said, ‘’A dog.’’
My Mom would say, “Get ready for bed.”
I would respond with, “Get ready for a new dog.”
My sister told me to stop asking her to play hockey and I would say, “If I had a dog, I wouldn’t ask you to play with me.”
I couldn’t get it out of my head! I wanted to get a dog so bad! I just needed one and I wanted it to be a girl. She would be the smartest little dog ever! I promised to take care of her and teach her different tricks. I promised to feed her, give her water, let her out to go to the bathroom and give her baths when she got dirty.
We had a family meeting about getting a new dog. We talked about how much work it would be to get a new puppy. Everyone agreed that we would help out. But now we had to find the perfect dog for our family. We talked about our old dog Jaeger who was a great hunting dog but was super crazy and couldn’t always settle down. We knew we didn’t want a German wire hair for that reason. We also knew we needed to get a dog that would get along with our little dog Bella. Our cousins had a chocolate lab named Stella and we loved her because she is so mellow, sweet and a loving dog. So, we thought we would get a chocolate lab.
One night my mom was on Facebook and she saw a breeder named Momma Mia with a litter of 10 puppies. They were the cutest thing I have ever seen in my whole life. There were five boys and five girls. We paid most attention to the girl puppy photos because we wanted a girl. They were really small with big blue eyes, floppy ears, no teeth and had small noses. We found the cutest puppy out of all of them. The family thought we would get that one.
My mom texted the owner, Sandy, and asked if we could see the puppy the next day in the afternoon. The next day Sandy came, and she surprised us by bringing six puppies. We played with all the puppies and they were so funny and small. The puppies would follow me around and would chew on my fingers. We all agreed that we liked the puppy with the light pink collar. It was hard to see them go because they were so cute and cuddly. Mom told me that I had to wait six weeks for the new puppy to come home with us.
We tried to come up with what we thought would be the best name for our pup. When we looked outside our house there was a dog in the yard, and we tried to get its attention by saying different names. The dog answered to Jason which is my Dad’s best friend’s name. We thought it would be funny to call her something closed to Jason but since it is a girl, we all agreed with Jacy.
We went to a pet store named Pet Authority to buy some new things for our puppy. We bought dog bowls, chew toys, treats, bones, a dog bed and a leash. Our family was ready for the new family member.
Yay, Jacy the puppy was finally here! Sandy dropped her off on a Sunday morning. We spent the day playing and getting to know her. We brought Jacy in the house. She and our other dog were friends at first sight. She slept a lot and peed a lot and didn’t care where she did it.
The first night for Jacy was really rough. She was moaning and crying all night long. We would let her out in the middle of the night, but we knew we had to put her back in the kennel to train her that this was going to be her new life. Each night she got better and didn’t miss her original puppy family as much. My Dad and I worked with her on catching and retrieving balls. We threw the ball and she chased it but when we called her name, she didn’t bring the toy back. We wanted her to learn because we wanted her to be a hunting dog.
I didn’t realize how much work it was to have a new puppy. We had to keep close watch on her. She would pee all over! But she got better and better every day. This was an important skill to be inside the house, so we had to keep the doors closed and take the rugs out of the house. We had to put our shoes away and we had to put stuff where she couldn’t reach it. She destroyed my foam knee hockey balls, my sister’s shoes and would steal socks from the laundry basket when my Mom was doing laundry.
Jacy and Bella would play and then it would become a fight over a bone whenever the other dog got it. As she grew, we had to make sure that our food was in a safe spot where our dog wouldn’t get it. There were times when someone would walk away and she would jump on the table and started eating the food. It made everyone mad because they didn’t like it when she jumped on the table and ate their food.
Fall started to end, and snow started to fall. Our dogs loved to play in the snow, and it was Jacy’s first winter, so she loved it the most. She dug her nose into the snow and would throw the snow up in the air when she lifted her head up. She liked to run in the deep snow, and it looked like a deer running in a field. I would throw snowballs at her and she would jump on me and make me fall into the snow.
The snow started to melt, and I thought that she was not feeling the same because she liked to play in the snow. I think that without the snow it’s easier to play fetch because she could find the ball easier on the grass than in the snow. She got better and fetched the ball so my dad bought a ball thrower that would throw the ball farther so she could run farther to get the ball.
My dad looked into different training places and he found the one that he thought would be best. My dad and sister went to drop her off and I wasn’t able to go because I was at school and I was kind of bummed about that. She was at the training for two long weeks.
My dad, sister and I went to pick her up. We were so excited to see her again. We went there and the trainer said, “We are going to show you guys something she learned.” The trainer brought her out in a kennel on a trailer that was pulled by a four-wheeler and I could hear her barking. The trainer put her on a leash and then they threw a real bird, and the trainer shot a gun and she retrieved it to the guy’s hand. It was fun seeing the things that she had learned.
The trainer said we had a good hunting dog and my family and I were happy about that. Jacy was not scared of the boom from the gun either. Jacy came home and was so excited to be home and we took her out and played fetch. The trainer told us to fetch only about three or four times, or she will get sick of it. So, we fetched about four times and had her take a bath because she was in the kennel for a while and smelled like dead ducks.
In June she will be leaving again for 10 weeks to the same training place. She will learn how to be off a leash without running away. She will also learn how to be a good house dog and not jump on people when they come into our house. My family has to learn the sayings like sit and stay and others that they use. We are going to be able to watch them pheasant hunt on land and a duck hunt on water.
There are going to be so many different things to do with her when she is fully trained. We will be able to hunt with her. We will be able to play with each other and we will be able to run around the yard together. I hope my mom and dad will let her sleep in my bed with me.
There are so many different things that I’ve learned in the time of owning a puppy. It’s not easy at the beginning but it gets better and better. Jacy is growing to be a big part of our family and we are so lucky to have her as our own.
When I’m in school I miss her, and wonder what she is doing and thinking about. Is she waiting for me to come home and play with her or is she thinking about wrestling my other dog? Maybe she is happy when I come home so she can go potty. If I could speak dog, I wonder what would we would talk about? I would have so many questions for her. I think our first conversation would be like this:
“Jacy, why do I walk on two legs and you walk on four?”
“So I can run faster than you.”
“What is your favorite toy? Mine is a RC car,” I’d say.
“My favorite toy is my Kong when it has peanut butter in it, otherwise it is my ball,” Jacy would answer.
“Do you get sick of eating the same thing over and over every day?”
“Yes, would you mind throwing me some extra table food during supper?”
“Do you like to get dirty?”
“Yes, but I hate baths!”
“Do you love Bella?
”Um, yes except when that little dog hurts me.”
I guess I’ll just have to dream about our conversations because I don’t think she will be able to talk to me.
Someday my dream hunt with her will be to go to South Dakota with my dad to go duck hunting. We will camp in our camper on shore. We will get up early and get our waders on and Jacy will have a life jacket on. We will get in the boat and go to a spot and set up. Then we will wait for the time that we can start shooting. Then the ducks would start swarming into the decoys. My dad and I would start dropping ducks left and right. I would get the left; my dad would get the right. Jacy would be trained to jump off the boat into the water and start retrieving ducks. For each one she brought me I would give her a treat. Hopefully she will keep going for more.
I know dogs don’t live a long time. So, I am grateful that we got her now and can enjoy her for as long as we can. I think we got lucky to have Jacy in our family that she’s lucky to have a family that loves her and cares about her like we do. We get to experience a lot of good times and make many memories with her. I have learned so much in the short time she’s been with us.