I came home, changed, and started puppy-proofing the room, answering the phone and eating in between. Warren and I discussed the dog again. I got him to begrudgingly accept my bringing a puppy home as long as I did all the work (who else was I planning on having doing it?). He was also terrified about having a new puppy because he feared it would drive a wedge between us because the dog would bond more to him than me the way it did with his first fiancee. Ugh.
My phone interview that afternoon went so-so. I was clearly not right for the job; they wanted someone with JDBC coding experience who could sort-of write. I did, however, impress the hiring manager enough for her to consider me for an opening coming up in a few months. The company in question is very difficult to get into as a writer, so I considered myself fortunate.
I waited till 6:30pm to make sure no more job calls were coming in, then prepared to set out to buy puppy food and treats (I still had wee-wee pads and an unused collar left over from Fuzzball) and pick up the dog. Warren still wouldn't go with me. I had asked Diana about going around 4pm, but she was just waking up and wasn't in the mood. Warren suggested I try again before leaving. "She's got that video camera," he said, "and you don't want to miss this most precious moment. What's her number? I'll dial it for you."
Three words came into my head: Going, going, gone!
Diana's phone was busy, so I kept getting ready. Around 7:25pm I caught her online and asked again. She said yes. I told her I'd meet her at 8pm at her place so we could stop at the store and pick up videotape on the way. This also meant I could cradle the new puppy as we took her on her first drive with me.
I first bought puppy food and a few toys and treats at Pet Club. They didn't have a lot that would appeal to a small puppy; it seems most dog toys and treats are geared for larger ones. I chose a Boodha rope and a few corn starch-based bones. I already had lots of chew sticks.
Next I stopped at Diana's. We got into her car and hit the stores. I then remembered I hadn't picked up a new brush for the puppy, so I saw a pink one there and grabbed it (awww...). It looked like a wire-slicker brush, but the tines were plastic, which would be gentler on puppy.
Next, we went to the breeder. Diana unfortunately didn't have her camera running when I got to the pen. All seven puppies in there (one of the girls had been adopted since the night before) rushed to greet me. There was lots of puppy nipping, so I repeated the "Puppy Nip Test." This eliminated all but three dogs. A couple of others had lost interest in me; this eliminated them on principle.
Of the three left, one was starting to lose interest. This left two of the larger pups. One of them was jumping around in front of me, so I picked her up. The other, which turned out to be her littermate, started sniffing my shoes and pants. Woooo.... I picked her up, and her sister went to gnaw on their water bowl. Every dog in the litter I picked up melted in my arms, so that was almost a non-issue. (If a mellow dog doesn't feel comfortable in your arms, it's not the right dog for you.) I rolled her on her back; she felt like she was a little bit uncomfortable physically, but she went with it. (Fuzzball detested being held on her back like a human infant.)
Just to reverse the test again, I put this one down, picked up the water-bowl gnawing dog, and the sister again started sniffing me. I held both up at once to get another good look. They both seemed to want me, but one clearly wanted me more than the other. I then put them down. The bowl-gnawing dog jumped on the pants-sniffing dog, doggie-dominance style, and the pants-sniffer held her ground. This is when I realized I'd been looking at the same dog I was looking at the night before. Even better, Warren preferred a slightly larger dog, and this pup would probably be a teensy bit bigger than Fuzzball when grown up (she was already bigger than Fuzzball had been at nine weeks).
I selected my puppy, paid for her, got her papers, and then we went back to Diana's house. I put the puppy on the grass in case she needed to "do her thing," but she seemed frightened by the grass. I then put her in my car and drove home with her. Diana had run back into her place to get a cable for her camera so we might be able to dub the video.
I arrived home, and I went straight to the sink with puppy to give her a bath. She was an angel about it. There was no fighting, little strugglng (they all hate it when you have to rinse their head), and when I went to dry her she didn't run away. Diana arrived as I was drying her. As soon as she turned on the camera, the dog started posing as if she were some kind of Playboy playmate. It was hysterical!
I then set her up for my "Kodak moment" shot I'd tried to get with Fuzzball. I put a bunch of stuffed animals on a burnt orange-colored easy chair, positioned the dog with them, then had Diana shoot it. Unfortunately, the animals I picked were too small in scale to make the shot work right, but the puppy salvaged it by posing as if to say, "These are my stuffed animals, can't you tell? Oh, by the way, aren't I just gorgeous?"
Then I realized what would give us that "Kodak moment." I grabbed my white Scoozie pet ferret, put it next to the dog as she was napping, and had Diana set up the camera. I had set up the ferret to awaken on its own next to the pup. Diana had forgotten to unpause the camera, so when the pet went off and the puppy jolted her head we missed the shot. We did, however, get some cute puppy and Scoozie footage.
I brought out my video converter, but Diana had been unable to find the video cable necessary to connect to it, so dubbing was out for the day. Diana had footage of Warren's old apartment in North Bend, OR, on the same videotape so they watched that while I snuggled with the puppy.
Now I get to figure out what to name her....