Reality check is my weekly confessional. The good, bad, and ugly will go here so that I can just... be. Be real. Be authentic.
This dog. He is seriously one of the best possible things to happen in my life. I imagine this is what people feel like who have babies. He's the second love of my life, behind only G. It came to my attention the absolutely absurd level of my love for this sweet animal (come on, look at that FACE!) when I booked a photoshoot primarily just for him. How cliche!!! (photo above, courtesy of Carolyn Scott Photography - who we booked again for updated family portraits!) The FULL throwback to our first photoshoot with Levi is here, ICYMI.
My little Levi. I want to immortalize him forever.
We looked into cloning, funnily enough. It can be done! For a mere $100 Grand they can generate a dog via test tube that will look exactly the same and be genetically twin. But, the problem with it is they can't guarantee the personality or temperament will be the same. And honestly, as cute as he is, my love for him is for his heart. His cuteness just allows for him to get away with more shit than I would normally tolerate.
So, this post is Levi's reality check!! The good, the bad and the ugly about Mr. Levi.
Transgressions (which we always forgive extraordinarily quickly) :)
+ Likes to mark (that means pee) when we have visitors at the house. Especially in the room they are staying in, and particularly near or on their stuff. It's his way of saying "Mine!" and "Welcome to my house" at the same time. Keep the doors closed, people!
+Likes to ignore calls to come inside the house in the morning. Like, when we are already late to leave for the gym. I teach classes at 6am so I cannot be late. The gravity of this issue escapes the dog. He will sometimes look me right in the eye when I call him to come inside and prance away from me, sniffing towards the back fence.
+Likes to smack his lips (making weird mouthy sounds) at night while I'm trying to fall asleep. Especially after we've brushed his teeth because he doesn't like the feel of it in his mouth. I have to holler at him to quit!!! sometimes. It makes me crazy.
Winning Qualities (there are too many to name, but these are at the top)
+Temperament. Levi is seriously the sweetest dog ever to live. I know everyone says this about their own dog (I imagine, again, it's quite like how you believe your kid is the cutest/most adorable/smartest/etc), and I know that I could possibly be biased... but I honestly don't think that's the case. He truly is THE sweetest dog ever to grace the Earth.
+He puts up with our constant fussing. I fuss over his fluffiness and subject him to pretty harsh hair brushings at least a few times a week. He never squeals or gets mad, he just patiently waits for me to be done so he can shake it off. G fusses over his eye crust - dogs generate more than humans it seems and with the fur right there at their eye it just gathers and stays put. She grabs it right off his face and he doesn't ever complain.
+He sleeps through the night. Hallelujah. Even the best of babies can't pull this one off every single night for a decade. This pup likes his sleep, and he likes his little dog bed to get cozy in. Even if we sleep in until 8 or 9 in the morning and it's been nearly 12 hours since he went out, he will laze in bed, no problem.
What He Hates (not a lot actually, he tolerates quite a bit without complaint)
+The same meal twice. Every other dog I know goes crazy for their food bowl- the same dry crunchy food they get a scoop at a time every meal for their whole life. Not Levi. We have to buy him a variety of flavors of wet food to mix in with a variety of flavors of hard food, and mix up the combinations, sometimes adding in fish oil or bacon grease, to keep him semi-interested. He will go on strike and not eat sometimes for more than a day. Can I please have some of this self-control??
+Getting his teeth brushed. It's a two-person job. Two mommies tackling him at once. I hold his mouth open, as gently as possible, and G goes in with the toothbrush and makes sure all the teeth get hit up at least for 2-3 passes.
+Both of us being on the couch together but not him. It's the pack mentality. If we're snuggled up on the couch, it's really rude for him to not be invited too. He will whine and cry and beg until he gets to partake in our shared experience. He's been known to gallop around the house, vaulting himself off the step into our living room to get attention.
What He Loves (basically, everything else)
+Chasing after squirrels in the back yard. He's never caught one, but he's real cute when he tries.
+Playing with his squeaky toys, especially his pig.
+Pizza crust. This is, without a doubt, Levi's favorite thing IN LIFE.
+Couch time. What dog doesn't? He'll push his bottom right up into your lap or on your arm and make you overheat.
+Walks. The longer the better, especially between the temperatures of 50 and 75 degrees F. He even has a favorite "route" around the neighborhood which allows for a pass by the kids park where he is a local celebrity.
I never thought I would love a dog like this. After the bad experience I had as a kid, I had said I am not a dog person. It's an "I am" boudnary that I happily retire. Some of my favorites: