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I inherited a dog

Article and photos by Michelle Post

I did not think I would ever say those words, “I inherited a dog,” but I do now. Tuffy Newman is his name, and he is a 12-year-old Pomeranian. He was the beloved companion of my Aunt Jean and Uncle Bob. It was not in my aunt’s final will for us to take him, but it was her last request of my husband and me before she lost her fight with cancer earlier this year.

Not having been a dog owner for more than 30 years, to say we are having an adjustment period is an understatement. The main reason for this is that we have cats; two female black tabbies named Cali (12) and Cori (6). Tuffy did not grow up with any companion cats or dogs and suffers from “it’s all about me” syndrome.

I have known Tuffy since he was a puppy and would spend a lot of time with him with each visit to my aunt and uncle in Wyoming. He is all energy and loves to play fetch. He is extremely smart too, and this comes into play often as he and the cats are “training” one another.

If I am giving one of the cats attention, Tuffy runs and grabs the most obnoxious squeaky toy he has and makes it squeak as loud as he can until I stop and give him attention. The cats get back at him by standing over his toy(s) and hiss at him when he comes near to them or the toy.

One of the cats’ favorite ways to torment Tuffy is when he is trying to come inside, and they block the door. He whines, whimpers, and turns circle as he looks to me for help. I have to shoo the cats away so he can come in. Occasionally, the cats will move out of the way to let him in, but they make sure to pop him on the butt when he passes by. Do not worry about Tuffy though, as he has plenty of ways of getting back at them. It is never a dull moment in the Post house.

I am grateful for the new addition to our family. Every time I look at Tuffy, it gives me a fond memory of my aunt and uncle. Embrace the unexpected and rejoice in the unexpected joy it brings.



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