Before we were even engaged, Seth and I talked about getting a dog. I would look online and in newspapers to find the perfect cocker spaniel. I finally found a local (40 minutes away) family who was selling pure bred cocker spaniels. I called and they told me they had one left. The seller told me she would send a picture; Seth was over my shoulder when I checked my email. I opened the attachment and there was the little puppy that no one wanted…the only one left in the litter. He barely had hair, his ears were so droopy, and his eyes looked so sad. I looked up at Seth and he said, “Go get him.”
Harley Marley was so stinking cute. He would just sleep and cuddle at first. At the time I lived two hours away (when I was in college), so he would ride back and forth with me when I traveled home. I brought him everywhere.
Then he started getting into the active puppy stage. He jumped on everyone, peed when he got excited, and chewed everything. Literally anything left on the ground, he would chew…even our apartment carpet. Flip flops, paper, chair legs…he would even eat the toilet paper off of the roll, so I had to pick that up as well.
He went from bad to worse…he was terrible. People would tell me to give him away. He was not even one year old, so I convinced myself that he would calm down with age.
Years later we welcomed our first daughter Kennedy. I was beyond nervous that Harley would act out on the baby…and then we would REALLY have to give him away. To our surprise, he was completely opposite.
One of my favorite pictures is when Harley met Kennedy for the first time.
The dog who once was my daily facebook posts and pictures, was now slowly sliding down the totem pole. He wasn’t our main concern anymore. He didn’t care though…he adjusted to Kennedy so well (except when he would constantly eat pacifiers).
He would let her ride him and pull his hair. He did everything she wanted him to do. I loved when he would be the guest at her tea parties.
Then we brought home Jules, and Harley fell lower on that totem pole. He would rarely get a ride in the car anymore…two kids was enough to load up. But still he did not care. Every time we would walk in, he would greet us like it was the first time seeing us in years. It was like he just “knew.”
I fell in love with the fact that we had a dog to grow up with our kids. It is the sweetest thing to watch. They have the cutest moments, and he cares for them like they are his puppies. They became best friends.
Since Jules was little, Harley developed a love to nap with her. It’s the most adorable gesture ever. He finds where she is sleeping and then goes lay with her…I’m not sure why. Maybe it’s because they have the exact same hair, or maybe he likes Jules’ big belly.
Harley is now 6 years old and he is still bad. He has chewed up blinds in our new house, scratched doors, and scratched crown molding. He eats our garbage and the neighbors garbage. He gets to food before you do, knocks down his gate, etc. etc. etc.
People STILL tell me to give him away. It is not an option…never was. He is who he is and he is perfect for our family. There is a reason he was the only dog left in the litter… not because noone wanted him, but because God was saving him for us :) He wouldn’t last very long in other people’s family, but he is PERFECT for ours.