I have had many pets in my life; Cats, Dogs, fish, turtles, and birds. But to be honest I’ve never felt more responsible for my dog than I have with Milo. Milo is my 9 month old Siberian husky. He’s a bit of a land shark. Ever since I brought him home he has nipped at me like no other dog, but despite his nipping( which has gotten better as I’ve trained him) I love the little guy.
Before milo, I had a dog name Oso (bear in Spanish) and he was a good dog but to be honest I feel like I let him down. He used to have a sister named Luna (moon in Spanish) and she was the kindest dog ever. Unfortunately she passed away from reasons I’m not really sure about. Oso missed her of course. He was sad and unfortunately never got that energetic pep in his step after. months leading up to his passing he had many hip issues and wouldn’t be able to get up like before. Honestly it’s hard to think about it because when I do I always think about how I never spent enough time with him.
My older sister wanted another dog after a while and decided to drive all the way to San Diego and bring home a pug. That pug named Bae, was spoiled. She was the little ruler of our house and made sure people knew it. My sister at the time had moved out shortly after getting her so bae lived with us for a while but When my sister got married last year she took bae with her. This is where Milo’s story comes in.
See it had been a few months without bae and there was definitely something missing without her. I really wanted a corgi. I thought they were the cutest things ever but my dad having recently seen Togo on Disney plus fell in love with huskies. So my dad and I had been looking online sharing photos of dogs, in secret mind you because my mom didn’t want another one, and then one day out of the blue my dad was like “there’s a husky want it.” and I was like sure! so we went halves on it and drove 3 or 4 hours away to go get him.
When we got there, I noticed the house was a little run down, the windows boarded up, and the guy was waiting there with the puppy in hand with some vials which he said were his shots that he had given. I found that really odd. Tip #1: don’t ever get a dog from a sketchy breeder. Milo was dirty, matted and rough. originally the guy said he was 6 weeks old but when asked again he said only four weeks. Tip #2: don’t get a dog who isn’t properly weaned off the mother; that’s at least 8 weeks. Immediately I could tell something was up and on further inspection we found him covered in lice. not just a little but a ton. He was weak, he hardly ate and he would not react to anything.
The craziest part of the story was that my little sister was scrolling through Tik Tok one day and found a girl who had rescued some puppies from the same area we had gotten milo. The girl called the cops, there was a whole feud between the guy and the girl and she posted some videos of the dog’s conditions. They looked like they were in the same conditions as milo and Turns out it was his sisters.
Anyways when I saw how bad milo was I went into full on rescue mode. I fed him with a syringe, I got a bunch of brushes to get the lice out, washed him a lot, took him to the vet, bought the puppy package and just got to work. Every day he got stronger and every day he would get bigger. He turned into a whole new dog; the only thing is he did not like being handled at all. So I trained him, I wanted him to stop being the land shark he was but after a while in truth I got Kinda lazy. One day I was hanging out with my friends at their house who also owned dogs and brought milo along so he can socialize with other dogs. while One of my friends was feeding them she reached down to pick up a bowl when milo bit her, fortunately it wasn’t serious but it did leave me feeling responsible and ashamed. I realized that I needed to take training serious so this comes down to the Five things I’ve learned from being a dog owner. I know finally right?
- Do your Research.
A dog is a huge responsibility. There’s a bible verse that reminds me of this concept. “For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?” – Luke 14:28. Dogs cost money. not only do you pay to get the thing, but you also have to pay for healthcare, vaccinations, food, toys, training, surgeries, and if they have any allergies or health issues you need to take care of that too.
It’s so important that you look into the breeder, make sure he/she is legit because the last thing you want is to get a dog with many health issues. I have had friends who got a puppy thinking it was healthy but little did they know that the puppy had some serious illness and die young. Not only is it hard on the dog but hard on you. If the breeder is legit they will probably interview like as if you’re trying to apply for a job. We got rejected from a breeder because they thought our backyard wasn’t big enough. Don’t be offended about these questions either because that means they care.
To touch on shelters, please don’t get me wrong, they are good and there are some good shelters out there that care for both the dogs and the people that get them, but not every shelter will tell you everything about the dog you’re about to get. Some have bad histories of biting people, and if you don’t have the time and patience to train them then you are doing a disservice to the dog.
Lastly if you get a dog, look into the breed. the breed will tell you what kind of temperament you can expect, how difficult it is to train that breed, and whether or not it will be the kind of dog you’re looking for. Milo is hyperactive, energetic and difficult to train because he is a husky. And before you even get the dog make sure to see the dog AND the mother. the mother can tell you a lot about how the dog will turn out and seeing the puppy will tell you all about its temperament.
2. It’s not the dog’s fault it’s my fault
A dog needs training. Dog’s are easily frightened, anxious, and stressed. If they don’t have structure they will easily move towards behaviors that you don’t like. Barking, biting, destroying your stuff; that’s all due to allowing them to do whatever they like. I kind of think of it as a nervous tick. If they have no structure they become anxious. When they become anxious they do things in order to try to alleviate that anxiety. They will not know what to do in certain situations if they aren’t taught what to do. Hence training. Dog’s aren’t going to know I have to use the restroom outside the house unless you teach them; this is where you need to go. they aren’t going to know not to jump on the counter if they aren’t taught to not jump on the counter. and the better trained your dog is the happier they become.
Secondly, you should always be trying to become a better trainer. Thats what has helped me so much with milo. Learning about dogs has taught me to recognize the signs of when my dog is anxious, or if he needs to take a nap, or if he’s going to lunge at a person walking by. it’s taught me to look out for my dog and take responsibility for him when he’s doing something he shouldn’t be doing because I have the power to change that behavior.
Crates are your best friend. You might think,” but how can you put your dog in a cage?” the truth is if you can get your dog crate trained you will have a less anxious more attentive dog. the crate teaches them to slow down and relax. puppies should sleep anywhere between 16-18 hours and if that doesn’t happen they get CRANKY. if I didn’t get enough sleep I would be cranky too. The second best thing about that is that you can do stuff around the house without worrying if your dog is going to be doing anything it shouldn’t.
4. Dog’s best friend.
It’s all about relationship. If you want a dog to listen to you, to come when called, to play, and to be your best friend, you have to be it best friend too. Like any great relationship, it takes time, patience, and effort in your part to be your dog’s best friend. if you spend that time with your dog and effort and training your dog will reward you for it. A dog doesn’t become man’s best friend if you don’t become it’s best friend first.
5. Patience and love
Milo has been one the greatest responsibilities I have ever had. He tests my patience as much as I test his. He makes me better just as much as I do him. I love him even though he can get down right annoying. Owning him has taught me to take ownership of myself. He’s not gonna get trained if I’m lazy or if I don’t push myself out of my comfort zone. So he pushes me. The best part is that it not only pushed me to do things for milo but for other things as well. I thought if I can do this much why can’t I do things spiritual, intellectually, physically.
I will say this though, dogs are not for everyone.Having a pet is a great thing and if you have the opportunity, the means, and the time to devote yourself to a dog I encourage you to get one but if you can’t devote that time it’d be better to wait.
I’m definitely not a dog expert but I hope that someone can take something out of what I had to say because honestly taking full responsibility for milo is one of the greatest blessings and it has been an awesome experience and I would like all those with pets to have the same kind of experience as I. With that ill end the blog there.