I’m a bawling, sniveling mess right now. My husband just called from the road, moments after he dropped our two beloved-if-horribly-neglected beagles off at the kennel before our vacation. He was a mess. His exact words were, “Oh my God, that was worse than dropping off the baby.”
Apparently Otis, the almost-7-year-old who has been with us since he was just 10 weeks old, started shaking and whining and eventually yelping as they led him away. And Lucy, who is five and has been a member of our clan for just more than two years, had to be literally pulled through the hallway. Hubby thought she believed she was being returned to the pound.
It’s hard when you have kids after having pets, I think. I don’t love Otis and Lucy any less than I did before, I just don’t have the time for trips to the dog park and chasing them around the yard like I used to – though the nicer weather means they are getting lots more play time with us in the backyard than they do in winter.
Otis has come with us on every other trip we’ve made to the mountains. It’s almost like he knows what he’s missing. But he doesn’t. He couldn’t. Could he?
As Angel Face gets older, she is starting to really enjoy playing with the dogs. She’ll walk around and Otis will casually follow her, sending her into fits of giggles every time he turns when she does or his tongue darts out to taste her ear. The belly laughs are infectious. I have videotape evidence. And Lucy is very tolerant of toddler pettings and explorations.
I started to cry when Hubby told me about the kennel experience. We try our hardest never to kennel them, taking with us on trips to the parents’ homes and friends’ homes. They haven’t been kenneled since our third wedding anniversary when I was six months pregnant. That’s almost two years ago.
I try to comfort myself with the belief that at least they will have each other. And extra playtime on Friday. So, I’m sorry, Beagles. For everything.