“You got a dog?”

If you know me, you know I have waffled about getting a dog/pet in general for a while. In college I went through an anti-dog phase. I was pro-cat. I had fond memories of my childhood cat, Alvin, and had forgotten the havoc he wreaked on our household. Thankfully, I had my mom to remind me of Alvin’s passive aggressive habits whenever I said, “I want a cat”.

Derek and I talked back and forth about getting a dog for a while, and finally decided we would table the conversation until our one year wedding anniversary. After we returned from our vacation this past July we decided to start looking at dogs.

I was super nervous. Neither of us grew up with dogs (or pets, really. Alvin passed in 1999, may he rest in peace). I have had some bad dog experiences before. But Alaskan winters are dark and cold, and my husband spends a lot of time gone, and I really wanted a companion for such times.

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We would hesitantly look up pets available for adoption on our local petfinder while trying not to get our hopes up (I believe evangelicals call this “guarding your heart”). One Saturday we decided to visit our local animal shelter. While there we saw quite a few dogs, including a cute little black Alaskan Husky mix named Craig. (CRAIG. I KNOW. I am sorry if you have a dog named Craig, but I just thought it a rather odd dog name). He was adorable, but I really didn’t want a Husky. I just thought they might be too energetic.

We returned back the following Monday evening, and even visited another dog, but it wasn’t a good fit. Little Craig was still there, bopping around in his cell and being cute, but again, no Huskies.

Wednesday I get a text from Derek, “want to go to the shelter and just see if Craig is still there?” Le sigh. I agreed, and headed to the shelter that evening and met Derek when he got off work.

Little Craig was still there, which to me is pretty amazing because dogs get adopted very fast in Fairbanks. I’m not totally sure of all the reasons, but I think some of it has to do with the popular skijor/sled dog culture. Anyways, we decided to visit with Craig.

Readers, it was not fair. The little fellow walked into the visiting room and put his chin on my knee and stared at me with his brown eyes. He then plodded over and did the same thing to my husband. Either he is incredibly emotionally manipulative, or just an incurably sweet little dog. I vote the latter. I looked at Derek, who looked at me, and we both felt totally sunk. It was Craig.


We adopted him right then and there, and changed his name to Mac. I initially wanted to name him Macbeth, because I am that English teacher. But he was so sweet and cute and I couldn’t give him the name of a villain. So he became Mac.

I will not sugar coat this and say it was easy. Tears were shed. Favorite teaching tote bags were chewed. We have been learning a lot. But overall it has been so wonderful inviting little Mac into our lives. I am the last person I thought would transform into a dog person, but it is happening to me. Mac is sweet, feisty, a little obstinate, and an incredible little companion to come home to every day. Here’s to more adventures in dog ownership.

3 thoughts on ““You got a dog?”

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