Many people have asked about Jasper, our dog, and how we think he’ll do with the new baby.
First, a little background for those who have not been lucky enough to meet our “pup.” We adopted Jasper 2 years ago after meeting him on a chance hike he was taking with his foster mom. We had just camped the night at Jasper Lake, his name was already “Jasper,” and it felt like fate. His foster mom said he was the best dog she had ever fostered, and they were even looking for a home with no yard because he was a fence jumper (perfect for our yardless condo!). No one knew how old he was; he was graying around the muzzle and had been found wandering in Nebraska covered in ticks. The rescue had him listed as 8, but everyone we met on walks thought he was a puppy (partly because of his terrible leash manners and exuberant greetings!).
Since then, he has become pretty much the perfect dog for us. He’s calmed down a lot, mostly sleeps all day, but gets excited for his walks, and no longer jumps at people when we meet on walks or when they come in the door. Since we got him “aged,” there’s a lot we don’t know about him.
We do know he has always been wonderful with kids (except for wanting to take food out of their hands, which we will deal with when the time comes). He pretty much ignores them after his initial sniff, unless they have food, but it can be kind of scary for a small person to be sniffed by a black creature as big as they are. We’ve only had a few babies in the house, but he seemed to treat them with similar indifference. He most likely had kids in his life in the past, which is great for us. We’ve even “tested” him by putting our fingers in his mouth, pulling his ears, poking him, pulling his tail, etc, and he never seems to mind a thing, even if he does give us the side eye and maybe pull the tortured body part away.
We think that the biggest problems for him will be the decrease in attention he gets from us (although he’s not THAT needy), and the lack of sleep. He’s a funny, grumpy old man when he doesn’t get his 22 hours in. As for the attention, he has lots of admirers who have offered to come over and love on him. Needless to say, we aren’t TOO worried about him, although it will be a big adjustment from his routine now!
One thing I’ve been savoring lately is our morning routine, because I know that will be gone the instant we come home. Right now, I get up before Peter, so I go out and give Jasper his “good morning snuggles” on the couch, where he sleepily wags his tail and rolls onto his back to get his belly rubbed. After that he gets breakfast and then he goes in to snuggle with Peter on the bed on his special blanket (to prevent the black fur from completely covering our bed). Jasper is the most amazing snuggler and is the only dog I know who will actively spoon his human (see picture for example). I love watching Peter and Jasper snuggle in the morning before I go make breakfast for myself. They usually sleep in LATE (hooray for summer break!), and sometimes I go back to bed to join them 🙂
Obviously, this is a “routine” that will not last long, so I’m definitely enjoying it while I can!