My co-worker Scott brought in these photos of the four puppies that needed homes (see the “About Sparky” page for the full story of Sparky’s origins).
Half Pekingese, half chihuahua. Two were brown, two were black. Two were long-haired, two were short-haired. I fell in love with the long-haired brown puppy, but knew I couldn’t handle any more animals myself. Besides, I’m a big-dog type of person. Then, like a message from baby Jesus, I was struck with an idea:
Maybe it was time for my parents to get a pet!
Our beloved German Shepherd Harley had to be put to sleep two years ago this December. She had lived to be 13, and was truly the best dog ever. But her bad hips finally did her in.
Harley, summer 2005, age 13. We miss you girl!
Since then, my parents (especially my mother, who doesn’t like animals much) said they traveled too much to have a dog again. However, I suspected that my father missed having a dog around. Not only did both of my parents love Harley, but my dad especially loved our mildly retarded pekingese/?? mix Buckwheat (aka Pepper). Buckwheat had passed away several years before.
Dad and Buckwheat, circa ~ 1991
So I called my mother and jokingly acted like I already bought a puppy, just to see her reaction. I said, “Guess what I got Dad for Christmas? A PUPPY!” Instead of being mad, she actually warmed to the idea very quickly and said it would be nice to have a dog around the house again. I about “fell out,” as they say on Jerry Springer. Next I called my dad, and surprisingly he didn’t like the puppy idea. He didn’t even believe me when I said that mom liked the idea.
By the next day they had warmed to the idea. I think they were sold when the above puppy pictures of Sparky hit their inbox! I was told that if I met the puppy and liked him, that I could get it for my dad for Christmas. (I live in Colorado and they live 8 hours away in Kansas, so they couldn’t meet him themselves.)
Scott would not have snuck him into work for me to meet him, because that would be against the rules. So it didn’t happen. These pictures of him being held by a co-worker are obviously photoshopped. 😉
I think my parents were even more in love with him when they got these photos. Arrangements were made; in a week, I’d pick up Sparky and keep him overnight, and would deliver him the next day to my parents at a rendezvous point in Kansas.
But what to call the new puppy?