Yesterday marked 6 years since we picked up Murray, so today marks the date when I was pretty sure I had ruined our very nice life by getting a puppy. So many of you know this already, but those puppy days were so very hard on me. I was still deeply grieving the loss of the kitty love of my life, Petey, and Murray was such a hard baby dog. At first I thought it was me. I mean, Cesar Milan said it was me. Several dog training books and websites insisted that the humans needed to firmly, yet gently, let Murray know we were the boss. I cannot tell you how gratifying it was to have an experienced, well respected dog trainer struggle with my dog. Murray’s puppy days are a tear-stained, blurry mess to me. I recognized he was cute, but I was not in love with him.
When Murray was around 8 months old, I had a tearful conversation in a parking lot with our dog trainer about how I wasn’t sure I could keep Murray. I wasn’t sure I wanted to be challenged every single day by my pet. The dog trainer was extremely understanding and even encouraging of me finding a new home for Murray. He assured me that there were people out there that would happily take Murray and I could find myself a dog that better suited me. I had horribly mixed emotions about the whole thing. I made a decision in that moment, a decision to recommit to the process of training Murray and to do my absolute best with him before I let go. I knew that if I did my best and it still didn’t work, I would feel okay about finding Murray another home. As I said yesterday, I worked so hard with this dog. There were two obedience classes a week, private lessons, practicing on our own every day.
All that training was totally worth the effort because not only did I love the process, but it got me a very well behaved dog who is aces at obedience, I have an amazing bond with this furry dude. I am madly in love with Murray. I love how ridiculous he is. I love what a charmer he is out in public and I especially love that he makes everyone who comes into our house like he loves them SO MUCH.
Most of you follow me on Instagram and Facebook, so you’ve already seen Murray today, but have you seen Baby Murray? Here he is:
See that red leash in the last photo? Murray spent the first year of his life tethered to the coffee table if we were not in the room because you could not trust him. At a year, we still couldn’t trust him a lot, but he was strong enough to move the table, so, you know, there wasn’t much point.
Happy Home Coming Day, Murray Don Carlo Anchev. You are so loved.