What raising puppies means to me...
I remember when my husband and I decided to get our Kaia. Our daughter was only 6 months old and I was so excited. I always loved dogs growing up, but never really knew I had a passion until a few years ago.
Kaia, our first dog, our first fur baby, our best friend. This dog gets away with more than any other dog we have and probably more than most peoples dogs. For instance, just yesterday she refused to go in the house when we were trying to leave. She ended up jumping in the truck and taking off with us for the day. She sat in the truck while we went to a few stores, went to lunch and even went to a movie with our kids. She loved it too.
After Kaia we got Josie (literally 2 months later). Josie was a lab/gsp mix so you can only imagine the energy level she had. Josie was MY BABY though. She was my everything. When we moved to a new house Josie was thrown out of her routine and started to attack Kaia for dominance. We had several professionals come out and tell us our girls would never be able to be around each other again.
It was devastating, with a 6 month old baby boy and our 3 year old daughter, we had to make the hardest choice and say goodbye. She went to school to learn how to be a police dog. I still think about her and want to cry.
After a while we got Mila. Oh my Mila moo. My girl. This girl has a personality like no other and I love her to death. She is so quirky and fun. The girl will do anything to get out and hunt with daddy (well so would Kaia).
Shortly after we got Jax who is a giant teddy bear love bug. He is just the sweetest and LOVES attention. THEN we got our Arya and Nova who are just pups still and we are still learning their personalities. I could go into more detail about all of our dogs but we would be here forever!
When Kaia had her first puppy, I cried. I was overwhelmed with joy, excitement and oh so much love. I literally felt like a grandog mommy. The first whelping experience with Kaia is what made me decide this is something I wanted to do for a long time.
From being awake all night with my fur babies in labor, to cleaning poop, to the overwhelming fear I have in me with every puppy, that something might be wrong with one of them, I LOVE IT. With every litter I learn something knew. I find better ways to do things and I fall in love with every puppy making it unbelievably hard (and a little relieving) to say goodbye.
Another breeder I talked to said "If you are not as equally sad as you are relieved to say goodbye to your puppies, you aren't doing it right". And that is so true. It is such hard work to raise a litter, but you still grow an attachment to each of them.
Until this past year I never really thought that I was going to be able to do this long-term. This past year was when I decided to make my dream a reality, to actually pursue my passion. We added two amazing girls into our breeding program (Arya and Nova) and decided to really go for it.
I am almost brought to tears thinking about how I get to live out my passion. I am so beyond excited and blessed to have a husband that allows me to own this many dogs. If I remember correct he used to tell me "no more than 2 dogs in the house at a time". We currently have 7 dogs in our house right now! HA! We wouldn't have it any other way.
I'm often presented with the question "You got another dog?" or "How do you have so many dogs?" Let me say this to any of you who have this question; BECAUSE I LOVE IT! I love my life. I will never EVER apologize for how many dogs I have. I will never apologize for my passion and love for breeding, whelping and raising puppies. I will never apologize for how much I LOVE my fur babies.
Not everyone can share in this passion or patience that you have to have to be able to contain this many crazy fur babes, but I do.
So what does raising puppies mean to me? It means everything. It means I get to do what I love. It means I get to see the joy on peoples faces when I hand them their puppies. It means that my kids get to watch life happen. It means I get to connect with families/ people every day. It means I get to hang out with my human babies and fur babies everyday. It means I get to live out my passion. It means EVERYTHING to me.