An Otaku's Dog

2010-01-23T22:48:34.323-07:00

I have been meaning to write about this for awhile, and if you have read my past posts, specifically the Xmas eve and numerous Live blog posts, you will know that I got a dog rather recently. I thought I would share my thoughts on getting a dog and talk about the small adventure I had when getting one. 

Let me start by saying I have wanted a dog for a long time, this wasn't a spur of the minute decision, it was something I thought about a great deal. I think that when considering getting a pet of any kind one should think about it for at least a month or two. 
My journey to dog ownership began as a young boy. As most boys do, especially if you grew up watching old Lassie episodes on Nickelodeon, at a certain age I started to wish for a comrade in arms, a compatriot to take along on my various neighborhood adventures.  
Sure I had a little brother, but as all older brothers know, little brothers are annoying as all hell (apologies to my brother if he ever reads this, but seriously you were cramping my dinosaur style with your Mickey shirts). I did the usual kid thing, put up pictures of dogs I liked in my room, bothered my parents, circled puppy ads in the classifieds, and eventually my Dad brought home a dog. Now in all of my pestering I don't recall ever asking for a female dog, and I am pretty sure in the drawings I did of me and my future dog jet packing around the neighborhood with grenade launchers fighting ninja's that I made it pretty obvious that my dog was one bad as guy. 
Apparently, however, when my Dad discussed getting a dog with my Mom she decided to take my dream of rocket strapped awesome and stick a god damn dress on it. She had cooked up some strange idea that female dogs are better than male dogs which she would have seen was obviously wrong if she had only taken the time to reference my bad ass drawings. 

So my well intentioned father brings home a little Rat Terrier named "Trixie", a dog that had been abandoned via a car window on the hi-way after she had, had puppies. She was rescued fixed up, save a permanently offset jaw that gave her a snaggle tooth, and brought home by my Father. Now I am all for adoption and rescuing pets of all types, but I don't think an emotionally fragile and damaged dog is necessarily the best choice for a family with three children. Yada Yada Yada... "Trixie" was a good dog, but she was in the end, my parents dog as the only things she could really handle was eating, sleeping, and pooping, not so much a dog that you could pal around the neighborhood with. This experience jaded me a bit against dogs, as the experience was nothing like I had imagined a bias which remained for years.

My interest in dogs was eventually renewed after a visit, in my strange and wild college days, to a musician/bus driver/janitor/gardeners house to pick up some soil for a terrarium. It was at this eccentrics home that I met a most wonderful Australian Blue Heeler who got me interested again in dogs. Soon I was scouring the web looking at various breeds and their info, watching dog shows, and generally just renewing my interest in dogs. It didn't take long, however, before I became obsessed with one breed specifically, the Shiba Inu. 

As a fan of Japan it only made sense that I would have an interest in Japanese dogs and I looked into all of the breeds of Japan, but I kept coming back to the Shiba. I liked how the Shiba looked, its behavior, its demeanor, everything about the Shiba I enjoyed. Well this want of getting a Shiba stayed with me for a long time, and finally in this past November I thought I should go and maybe just meet some Shiba's. I discovered, quite to my surprise, that there was actually a breeder in the town where I spent most of my time growing up and had graduated High school from prior to my family moving my freshman year of College. 

It had been a while since I had made that drive and it just reminded me of how bleak most of the Nebraska landscape is...



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Pictured: Bleakness.



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Soon after arriving I met the breeder, who was absolutely great. If your going to a breeder to get a dog, make sure it is a small family breeder and not some puppy mill. I could really tell, as she gave me the whole history and everything I would ever need to know about Shiba's, that she was a breeder dedicated to improving and protecting the breed. AKC registration is important here folks. The first dog I met was Luta, the mother of my puppy. She was shy and this is the only picture she let me take of her.


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Next I met this fine gentleman named Tigger, the father of my puppy. This is where my "just visiting" plan started to fall apart. Tigger was about the sweetest dog I have ever met. Right away he came up to me and asked to be petted.


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I then met the aunts, the uncles, the grandpas and the grandmas, and one great grandpa who was one magnificent dog by any age.



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After meeting with the extended family I got to meet the puppies. This is where I was really in trouble. Not only were the puppies cute, but they were personable and well behaved, my only complaint was that they were difficult to photograph. Above: One of the girl puppies demonstrates how to be difficult to photograph and cute at the same time.



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Now I mentioned above that I didn't want a girl dog when I was a young boy, and the same held true as an adult. I don't really care for girl dogs. Not that I hate them or anything, I just prefer the roguish nature of boy dogs. Girl seem a bit bitchy to me.. get it? ha ha...(sigh). Anyway after meeting the three female puppies I felt pretty confident in my ability to stick with my "just visiting" intent, as surely the single boy in the group could in no way be so fantastic that I would feel the need to have him be my dog. Then.. this pudgy little barrel came bounding out, chased a leaf briefly, and then came running straight over, pushing his sisters out of the way and demanding belly rubs. My resolve melted.

That very day I filled out the papers to make him officially mine once he was old enough to go home with me.

There was only one problem, I had yet to procure an apartment that allowed dogs... and so began an emergency search that ultimately ended in me finding a great apartment and moving in the middle of a blizzard.


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Totally worth it. I brought home Toshiro the weekend after I moved in, at 10 weeks of age he was and is everything I could want in a dog.



Here he is on his second day home.


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A bit tired after Xmas at my parents.


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Since bringing Toshiro home, every day has been an adventure and I know we both look forward to the spring when we can get out more!


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