Homegrown terrierism: it’s more dangerous than many people realize, unless they’ve undergone highly specialized training such as Defending Your Doughnut, Lingerie Lock-up, and Shortcuts To Shoe Security.
Life with a small, bad dog is not for the faint-of-heart (nor faint of heartbeat), nor the impatient, nor those who’d be much happier with a lolloping Lab. A Yorkie may look like an adorable little darling with a hairbow, but never forget that “Yorkie” is short for Yorkshire Terrier–a class of dog bred for generations to rid its environs of rodents.
As in most areas of my life, I entered into terrierism without much thought or research or planning. I lost my pretty Penny (a 13-year-old shepherd-chow mix) over July 4th weekend in 2009, and though I wanted another dog, I didn’t have the heart to look for one–I hoped the right one would simply find me when it was time.
Earlier in 2009 (May 16, to be exact), friends in Brevard had become the proud grandparents of four new grandpuppies, courtesy of Steffie and Stuart (pictured below).
All the puppies were spoken for, including a mostly-black male with a white paw and white shirtfront. In July, he went home with my sister-in-law’s mother (Mrs. B) who had recently lost her elderly Jack Russel. It was around the same that Michael Jackson passed away–and since the puppy had one distinctive “white-gloved” paw–she called him Michael.
A month or so later, little Michael had repeatedly escaped from her fenced yard AND chewed a hole in her leather sofa (among many other activities that don’t bear repeating). For her sanity and the health of her remaining furniture, Mrs. B returned Michael to his family of origin to be reassigned to someone else more able to cope with the early stages of terrierism. That turned out to be me.
One look and I was hooked! He reminded me of the Lorax (from the Dr. Seuss classic The Lorax), so I renamed him ‘Teddy’ in honor of Dr. Theodore Geisel and the rest–well, that will keep for another time.