Sunday, February 12, 2012

A New Addition

The plan was to drop Mallorie off at the airport, run an errand and be home by dinner. Her Continental flight was delayed a couple of hours, so Cade and I thought we'd park in the rental car drop off lot to wait for her flight to depart. Unfortuntely there were no empty spots, so I decided to go ahead a run my errand. We were in and out of the store within 5 minutes and still Mallorie's flight was delayed. I didn't want to leave Greensboro, in case her flight was cancelled. As we drove by Bridford Parkway, I had an idea.

"Cade, would you like to go to the animal shelter and visit the dogs?"

As soon as the words were out of my mouth, and as he yelled an emphatic "YES!" I realized what a tricky undertaking this would be. Cade has been wanting a dog for a couple of months. I politely and firmly told him we were only visiting, simply killing time until Mallorie's flight departed.

We laughed at some of the cats - those that sat on top of each other and the kittens that played around their sleeping bedmate. We then moved to the dogs. We stopped at each cage, read the name of the dog(s) and the breed. We got through the first house and Cade was doing very well. We did the same in the second house and just as we started down the last row, Cade became enamored. The dog's name was Ned. He was 2, a mix of Siberian Husky/Terrier/Pitbull, and had been at the shelter since July. Cade asked if we could walk Ned. I was initially hesitant; a mixture of pitbull is still a pitbull, but Ned was sitting just as calm as you please. I also noticed he was a sponsored dog, and sponsored dogs don't have much time. He hadn't been walked yet, so I agreed. A volunteer helped us leash Ned and outside the 3 of us went.

I noticed immediately that as we walked down the aisle, even though dogs were jumping and barking, Ned never stopped, never barked. He let Cade lead him out.

As we stepped into an empty lot, two other volunteers noticed us. "Are you considering adopting him?" they queried. Before I could shake my head no, they went on to tell us what a great dog Ned was. "Very gentle, very loving." "He'll lay his head in your lap and soak up affection." I watched as Cade threw a ball. Ned retrieved it and let Cade chase him a bit. He never jumped up on Cade and did come up so Cade could pat him. And even though other dogs were rough-housing near by, Ned didn't care. After 20 minutes of outside play, Ned allowed Cade to leash him and we returned to his cage.

To Cade's credit, he never said a word. He didn't have to. He looked up at me and I saw it in his big brown eyes. A boy had definitely found his dog. Fortunately, I was as impressed with Ned.

Thirty minutes and $70 later Cade, Ned and I headed home. On the drive Cade admitted he didn't exactly love the name Ned, so Cade and I started discussing alternate names. Snowy, Whitey, Salem, Cherokee. Cade suggested Commander. I liked it. And Ned became Commander.

Oh, and Mallorie's flight did eventually depart.

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