When Dude was three we bought him a fish, Dorothy. We took him to the pet store , let him choose a fish and then bought all the fixings, including a large treasure chest ornament for her to 'play' with. About six months later she lost her will to live. I suspect the handful of Cheerios I found floating at the surface of her bowl had something to do with that. Crafty was sharing.
Anyway, then we bought Mr. Bluefish. The circumstances surrounding his death are a little suspicious as he died while in the care of a known fish hater about three months after we got him. Then came Tuck, the tortoise. Although she will probably outlive me she is the easiest pet in the world to have. She makes no noise, no mess and is pretty entertaining to watch. When we got her I thought we were done with pets but now I'm not so sure.
Dude has been having a rough time, emotionally, on and off for several months. He tries to stay positive and calm but he does have bouts of stress, anxiety and depression. It's tough to watch him struggle like this. His doctor thinks he is experiencing the hormonal fluctuations that are a prelude to puberty. Great! As if having Aspergers doesn't make things socially awkward enough, let's add early puberty to the mix!
When I asked the doctor what we can do to help him she said we could get a dog. I laughed. I thought she was joking but she was dead serious. She directed me to a couple of websites that have articles on the benefits of dogs to kids with ASD. When I started asking around I discovered that many of my pals with kids on The Spectrum have cats or dogs. They swear by the calming affect that these animals have on their kids.
I must be crazy because I've done a lot more reading and I'm almost convinced ... almost. We've talked to the kids about it and of course they are all for getting a dog and Crafty even offered to be on poop patrol - we'll see how long that lasts!
We spent some time on Pet Finder last night and of course all of the kids had a different idea of the type of dog they want. Crafty fell in love with a Shih Tzu names Paris and Mischief loved a Basset Hound named Corndog or the English Bulldog named Porky. Mr. Awesome said no to anything tiny, fluffy, with a cutesy name (so that disqualifies Paris). I found a Boxer named Chaos that seemed fitting and Dude loved a Shnauzer named Fozzy. This is NOT going to be easy!
So I am inviting you, my faithful pals, to help us. Help us find that 'just right' dog. We don't want a puppy or a major shedder, Dude has had allergic reactions to some dogs so we have to be mindful of that. Some one who isn't a mad barker or a crazed chewer.We want a buddy for the kids who will hang out, cuddle and play in the park.
Help us find a pal.