November 12: Your First Pet
I wish I had a picture to share with you of Buster, my first pet. Buster was a beagle puppy we adopted from a breeder while we were living in Beacon, New York. I don’t really remember anything about getting him, or how long exactly we had him, because I was only about 3 at the time. I do have memories of him, but sometimes I’m not sure if those memories are actually mine or are simply honed from years of hearing my parents tell stories of Buster.
From what I now understand as an adult, we probably didn’t have Buster for very long at all. Eventually his super destructive behavior became too much for my mom to take, and we ended up bringing him to the ASPCA. Thankfully, he was adopted the following day by a family with older boys and a lot of land. We were living in a townhouse at the time, with a deck and a small yard that backed into a wooded area. Buster was smart enough to dig up his tether, but not smart enough not to eat twigs. These, along with grass, would get stuck in his throat and we had more than one emergency trip to the vet with a dog who was struggling to breathe through all the sticks jammed in his throat.
I think my favorite Buster story is the night we came home from dinner, and he met us at the front door super happy we were home. Sadly, when we had left, he had been penned into the kitchen, which had been covered in newspapers. He had somehow managed to jump onto the kitchen counter, up onto the refrigerator, knocking over all of the cookbooks (which were then covered in his “gifts” for us on the floor) and jumping over the dog gate in the kitchen. Another time, he got out of the kitchen and managed to lock himself in a bathroom.
He was a sweet puppy, but was a puppy and ultimately too much for my mom to handle along with a three year old. Thankfully, he did find a loving home, and as far as I know lived out the rest of his days playing and running around.