Sunday, July 29, 2012

Pepper, part 2

Pepper about a year old
So we got the puppy home and the first problem was her name. Apparently "Phoebe" wasn't as well liked as I had hoped. Names were thrown around and it was finally decided that the puppy would chose her own name. Each of us wrote our #1 pick on a piece of notebook paper, crumpled it into a ball and threw it on the floor. Whichever paper ball the puppy chewed first would be her name. She chose Pepper and Hubby tried not to gloat.

We were a busy family. The boys were in Scouts, one boy had football practice 3-4 days a week and we often spent the weekends on Grandad's farm. It was easier to just pack up the puppy and take her with us than to worry about rushing home to let her out of the crate. She didn't seem to mind. She went camping and hiking and sledding with us. She played with the kids at Scout meetings and kept me and the other moms company at football games. We were having fun. Years later I discovered that we were inadvertently "socializing" her. Cesar Milan would be proud.

Pepper was extremely food motivated. On the plus side, it made training easy -- she'd do anything for a treat. Unfortunately it also caused a lot of headaches. She was constantly in the trash, no matter how we tried to booby-trap the can. She chewed out the pockets of several jackets because a boy left a piece of candy inside. One time she ate half a dozen chicken enchiladas without removing the pan from the stove. Hubby and I each thought the other one had finished them off. Now that's talent!!

I could tell a hundred stories about Pepper. (Don't worry, I won't.) She made us laugh. She was smart too. And she had a deep, scary bark which kept most solicitors away. Even the Jehovah's Witnesses wouldn't come to our house. I guess my soul wasn't worth getting past that dog. We had her nine years before evil cancer took her away.

Its late and I need to go to bed. Before I go, here are a couple more pictures of the late, great Pepper. -- K