Friday, March 4, 2005
I was asked the other day by a friend why my nickname was spydersmom, so if you'll indulge me, I figured I would go ahead and share the story for those of you who may not have heard it before. It was February 10, 2000, just a couple of weeks after our huge snowstorm here. Although Steve and I already had a dog, a beautiful lab mix, Zoe, that we had adopted as a pup about five years earlier, for some reason on that day I had an uncontrollable desire - no a NEED - to go to the local animal shelter and look for another dog. Zoe was really more Steve's dog, and I wanted to adopt another as both a companion for her as well as for myself. So with a little urging, I convinced Steve to go with me to the Garner SPCA. We spent hours there, looking at and playing with the multitude of dogs they had available for adoption, but none seemed to be just the "right" one. Determined that "my" dog simply had to be there, I decided to make one last tour of the kennels. That was when I saw him. In the very last kennel on the right, D30, was the most humble and discouraged looking puppy I had ever seen. He was mostly black, with a white stripe that started on his face and went down under his chin, along his belly, all the way to his back legs, along with four white feet. He was sitting at the back of the kennel and appeared to have given up hope that anyone was ever going to adopt him. I noted on his ID card that he had been at the shelter for over a month already! I went inside the kennel and knelt down beside him. There was something in his eyes that just grabbed my heart and wouldn't let go, and I told Steve this was the one. I simply had to adopt him. The shelter personnel were kind enough to stay late so that we could take him home that night. The first thing he did was throw up in the back of the truck on the way home. Poor little guy - probably his first ride in a vehicle since being dropped off at the shelter as a stray. Once in our house though, Zoe welcomed him like her long lost best friend, and he immediately jumped up on the couch and went to sleep. Shortly after we got him home, we noticed that he would get very sore after minimal exercise and when we took him in for his veterinary physical, it was determined that he had been born without hip sockets. This resulted in two separate surgeries to remove the bilateral femoral heads, which required significant recovery time, but within a year he was one of the fastest running, most playful dogs I've seen in a long time, with a completely remarkable total recovery! For the past five years, this little whirlwind has been my best little buddy, following me everywhere, and showering me with puppy kisses constantly. He is absolutely wonderful with people, especially children, although a bit timid at times around other dogs. He is afraid of loud noises, but adores cats. He sleeps on the bed with us under the covers, loves vegetables, does my yoga poses with me, dances with me, runs along with me on mountain bike rides, rests on the bath mat while I shower, and shows off prancing around with a sock in his mouth anytime we have guests. He is my best little buddy, my confidant with whom I can share anything and know he won't tell, and my ray of sunshine every morning when I awaken to see his little nose pressed up near mine. After five years, I can't imagine life without him. So to explain where my nickname came from - as an avid mountain biker, I wanted to name him something bicycle related, deciding to call him Spyder, which would make me SpydersMOM.