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The Savage Beast

This morning the puppy pooped in the middle of the living room, and even though Dan got out of bed at 5am to take him out, and i took him out at 7 in the pouring rain, when he pooped on the floor i felt like the most horrible failure of a parent in the whole failed world of failure. My whole life of failure flashed before my eyes: we will never teach the puppy to go outside; he will pee in other people's houses and we will lose all our friends; he will bite big holes through our covers and arms even though we keep telling him no; the store will close after a horrible christmas and i will never find a better job; our children will become under-fed anti-social maniacs who spit at other humans and pee on the living room carpet.

Training a puppy is hard. I love him so much, but he keeps chewing on me and going to the bathroom in inappropriate places. Then i feel myself getting all frustrated, and i can't take it out on the dog, because it's not his fault that i'm a horrible dog-trainer who can't convey a simple message of THIS-IS-NOT-A-TOILET! Yesterday i sat petting the puppy for two hours, because i wanted to let him know that he's loved, and also because i felt horrible for letting a neighborhood kid hit him in the face with a plastic sword. I SHOULD HAVE BEEN PROTECTING YOU!!! I am the world's worst mother.

The hard thing is that, when we try to tell him No or teach him something, he looks at us like "What is this horrible indignity you're putting me through?" And it hurts my little heart to see that look on his face. Why shouldn't he be allowed to gnaw on the sheets? or eat from the trash-can? He is a dog, after all.

Dear puppy, please forgive me. I try hard to be a good mommy. I don't mean to be a horrible failure at training you. What i lack in any actual skills, i promise to make up in pets and kisses. Just please stop biting my nose.

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