Meet Maddie, our 12-year-old Jack Russell. It was about two weeks before Christmas 12 years ago, late in the evening, when my husband called everyone into the family room for a pre-Christmas surprise. He then presented this tiny little puppy to me as my Christmas present. I’m still not sure why he chose a puppy as a gift, but I do know I didn’t react nicely. Upon having the squirmy little puppy put into my arms I looked up and said, “But I wanted a camera.” I did get my camera on Christmas Eve, but I now also had a new puppy. If you know anything about Jack Russells, you know they have boundless energy and can jump to unbelievable heights. They definitely have a mind of their own. I even bought the complete set of DVDs from the Dog Whisperer. However, that doesn’t work unless everyone is on board. Needless to say, the first six years had me overwhelmed at the fact that these dogs live to be 20. I’m happy to say, at 12, she has calmed considerably and is much more obedient—definitely due to her own choosing.
I’m sure almost everyone, at some point, has heard the list of benefits of owning a dog. These benefits include, but are not limited to, lowering cholesterol, lessening stress and anxiety, mood lifting, and decreased blood pressure. In addition, as dog owners we exercise more, keep more active, have someone to care for (a purpose in life), and experience physical contact—ever so important for physical and emotional health.Continue reading