Reflecting on Osi

14 Nov

Osi in the morning

The first time I saw my dog, I was 16 years old, standing in my pyjamas at the entrance of my house while snow pelted my driveway. My mom was holding him in a plastic crate with a blanket over it. I couldn’t see much of him, but the one thing I could see were his big brown eyes. I could tell he was scared and nervous (he was so scared he ended up peeing on the carpet as soon as he got out of his crate) by the way he whined and moved around in his crate and wanted to get out.

Two days before getting Osi, I thought I was getting a jack Russell, which is one of my favourite breeds of dogs. I could already imagine my jack Russell and I running around at a park and playing hide-and-seek. So when my mom called me two days early, she ended up telling me I was going to get a shih tzu instead. I have to admit I was a bit disappointed, but nonetheless happy I was still getting a dog.

I was moping around the house before Osi came, but once I saw him, I was in love. He had floppy ears and a cute button nose. The way he walked around the house for the first time, curious and scared, was like seeing a baby crawl. The first time he came out of his crate and walked out onto the carpet, he did the unthinkable: he peed. He managed to make a mess on the first day and within the first hour of having met him. It was the first time I realized just how much of a handful he was going to be.

He continued on his little journey that day by sniffing out the entire house (he was extremely interested in the black piano in my living room). It was almost impossible to stop him since he looked so cute with his nose down on the ground and head bent. But eventually I did when I picked him up and looked him in the eyes. He didn’t whine when I held him and he didn’t bark, he only stared at me, trying to figure out who I was.

The weeks to come, I fed him and played with him and slept in the basement (his temporary bedroom) when he was feeling alone. Slowly, I taught him how to walk up the stairs and pee in the right place when he needed to go. I combed his fur every day and even gave him hairdos for each day. The best part was teaching him tricks like sit, stand, shake hands and many more. Today he knows about 7 tricks, and will perform them if you give him food.

Thinking back at all the years I’ve shared with Osi, I can honestly say that him coming into my life has been the best thing that’s ever happened to me. He’s been there when I was sick and he’s been there when I needed a distraction from life.  I still remember the time I stayed at home sick with the flu and he stayed beside me the whole day watching cartoons. He would sometimes tear up my tissues, but at least he cheered me up.

The thing many people don’t realize when they’re getting a dog is that dog becomes a part of you that you’ll take with you for the rest of your life. You’ll never forget that time when your dog jumped on you, spilling all the popcorn on the couch or that time when your dog curled up beside you when you fell asleep.

Osito may not be someone who can talk and use hands, but, at the end of the day, he’s my best friend who I wouldn’t give up for anything in the world. And now that you think of it, I don’t think I would have been happy with a jack Russell because I wouldn’t have experienced the same joys I feel whenever I’m around my shih tzu.

 

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