The Pug Life

We have a pug.  Or rather, she has us.  She's a little 19-pound ball of hyperactivity and I'm fairly certain she thinks she weighs several times what she does and is Queen Bee in our family.  Before I met my husband, I didn't really know anything about Pugs.  I'm not really sure I even realized they exist.  But his dream was to have a Pug someday.  My kids and I brought a lovely blonde and white Lab and Beagle mix named Lillie to our marriage and soon after, we all agreed we had room for a bouncing little Pug.  

We learned of Pug babies that were just born and went to see them.   They all looked virtually the same, like tiny black moles, eyes tightly shut, tongues searching for their mother.  They were cute though and several weeks later we returned to take our little girl Pug home.  In the weeks we had waited for her to be ready to come live with us, we'd gone over several name options.  Everyone had their favorites, but none of us could agree on one.  However, by the time we brought her home, we had had a meeting of the minds and agreed to name her Gracie Jane.  

Gracie was adorable and tiny but within a day or two of welcoming her home, it became clear that perhaps she left her mother too early.  A visit to the vet left us with instructions on how to hopefully nurture this tiny, helpless creature to health.  Since I worked at home, it became my second "job" to care for Gracie much of the time.  She liked to snuggle and needed to be warm, but she wouldn't eat on her own.  This meant that I literally spoon fed her or fed her through a syringe.  She was so tiny and so dependent, but we were all instantly in love with her.  

She nestled next to my husband and I each night.  Her favorite place then was tucked under his chin or mine.  Looking at her now with her chubby belly, it's almost hard to imagine her once being small enough to fit neatly between my chin and chest.  After a few days of close monitoring , feedings, and lots of snuggling, she began to thrive.  She hasn't stopped since. 

It's a unique experience watching a puppy grow from infancy.  Similar to watching a child making new discoveries, it's interesting to watch them awe at things like snow, water, and other dogs.  

Other dogs...Lillie didn't know what to make of Gracie at first but it was clear she didn't want much to do with this little thing that pounced on her, begging her to play.  Lillie is a few years older and a bit more sophisticated.  She turned her nose up to Gracie's attempts.  But not for long.  Eventually, Lillie figured out this tiny dog was here to stay and she began to engage Gracie.  Although miles apart in size, Gracie didn't know it.  In her mind, I'm pretty sure she's Great Dane size and she acts like it.  She barks at Lillie, tugs at her, gets right in her face probably without realizing Lillie's strength and that she (fortunately for Gracie) restrains herself against this small yapping nuisance.  

They've become good friends in the year since Gracie's been around.  Lillie has her own space and Gracie has hers (the whole house...she is Queen Bee, after all).  They've found their groove and love each other though I'm sure neither would admit it even if they could.  When spring comes, I'm quite sure Gracie will be out chasing Lillie again, never the other way around.  

Pugs are different for me.  I've never had a dog who thought she was all that and a pig's ear.  She's in love with my husband and makes no bones about it.  It's very clear he's her favorite.  She has a wicked underbite and looks like a reverse vampire with her two large teeth sticking up from her bottom jaw.  Her bulging eyes can't possibly be cute, but they are.  Only on a Pug could such a look be adorable.  And that's why we love our Pug.  We didn't choose the pug life;  the pug life chose us. http://www.blogher.com?from=bhfbadge " target="_blank">http://www.blogher.com/files/edbadge_Featured.jpg " alt="Featured on BlogHer.com" width="120" height="100" border="0">

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