April 1, 2015

A stroller for Piri

After going back and forth for weeks, I finally did it. I purchased a stroller for Piri. Before you roll your eyes at me and move on to your next blog reading, let me explain. 

In the past whenever I saw people using strollers for their dogs I thought it was a bit silly too. Dogs were meant to walk and sniff and use their senses. Let them be dogs! Well, that was before I was living with a dog well into his senior stages in life and it was before I knew anything about special needs dogs - dogs who are blind, can't use their legs or don't have any. 

When Piri came to live with me he was already 7 but he didn't have any issues with his mobility. We went on hikes together, took long walks and went on outings anywhere we could. Then the years went on and he grew more tired and became limited in distance. Most recently we noticed he couldn't go two aisles in Home Depot without resting, panting and looking really tired.

I want to continue to have quality time with Piri outdoors. The weather is getting nicer and we have the usual things we do - go out to DC, enjoy the cherry blossoms, spend time surrounded by nature. I still want to enjoy that but I don't want to do it at his expense. And so I asked around, heard stories from other dog owners who use strollers and finally purchased one last night. 

I do worry and cringe at the thought about receiving eyerolls and laughs from people who may I think I'm just an over the top dramatic crazy dog lady. You know, it's the part of me that cares too much about what other people think. Especially people who don't know any better and make any situation into their little soap box or comedy. And I keep recalling back to something that someone said -- how people who use strollers for their dogs were ridiculous. Dogs are not babies. 

Maybe I'm putting my insecurities on Piri and his situation. But you know what I'm most afraid of? I'm afraid that some people who know of my infertility struggles may take it as me going as far as buying a stroller for Piri because I can't have a baby. It's the kind of thought I don't want to have but people can be the most imaginative storytellers in the most unkind and cruel way. 

I guess in the end this post isn't really about Piri and his stroller. It's about judgements we make about people without really knowing the back story. But for the sake of keeping the theme, if you see someone who is transporting their dog in a stroller, it may be because the dog has a health issue or is older and needs rest in-between his walks. 

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