We love our lab. So much. Kyle and I decided about a year ago that we wanted a puppy. Luckily, we found an amazing family not too far away that breeds pure bread hunting labs. If you ever need a recommendation, definitely ask me for more info. You could tell when we picked our puppy up how much they love their labs and how well they care for them. We had to pick between two beautiful, rambunctious male pups, and we knew right away that Ace was the one.
Ace became the center of our lives (our new baby). Most of you already know this, because he makes a regular appearance on my Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook. We like to show him off, just a little bit.
I never wanted a big dog. I was a little dog person or so I thought, but when your dog is your own, it doesn’t matter what size he/she is, you love them like a member of the family. If you don’t, then you shouldn’t have a dog, just sayin’.
Now that Ace is 9 months old, he is almost full grown. He’s a smaller lab, but currently 65 lbs. Kyle works with Ace every single day. I take him for a walk and work on training at least 2-4 times a week, so some days he’s working with us twice.
This weekend I was completely defeated. As he was dragging me around the baseball field while I was trying to watch Kyle play, I thought to myself, “none of this training is working. He looks like he’s the worst dog in the world. This is horrible.” If I’m being honest, I was almost in tears at one point.
I could feel the judging eyes staring at me and the laughter and granted, it was hilarious at times, but it looked like we had never worked with this dog a day in his life. He lost most of his training and I know I am being way to hard on him. He’s still a puppy and people who have labs/dogs, know this. People who have never experienced lab/dog ownership truly don’t understand.
My point in writing this piece is that just like mothers with screaming children at the store, DO NOT judge an owner and their dog. Ace is a completely different dog at home. He doesn’t chew up shoes, he doesn’t dig in the garbage can. He doesn’t constantly bark. He doesn’t knock you down when you walk into our home. He is loving, cuddly, and patient. Best lab I’ve ever been around and of course I’m biased, but it kills me to see that other people don’t see that side of him.
I now have so much more compassion for other dogs who get excited around people or who uncontrollably lick and smell you. They might be trained every day, like Ace, but they’re still learning and every dog is different. Not all people are dog people and I get that, but it never hurts to have a little more patience.
Anyways, I found myself really distraught and angry, especially at Ace after the baseball game this weekend and after reflecting on that feeling a little bit, I came to the realization that it all comes down to feeling judged by others. Feeling like an inadequate dog owner. Truthfully, why do I care? Kyle and I are doing the best we can and most days, we even go above and beyond for our doggie, so who cares what others think or say. It’s not their life and it’s not their dog.
Moving forward I will be patient with Ace and his growing process and I hope those around him can be too!
Much love from a happy dog owner,