It’s kind of like when the reality sinks in after having children that life really will never be the same.

I sort of love my dog. Sort of. I found that my feelings toward her swung more into the “love” direction once she stopped taking dumps on my living room carpet. But we’re still in the “sort of” category because she recently chewed a rather large and noticeable hole in my sofa cushion. This officially makes three chewed places, and of course they’re on three different piece of furniture.

Our backyard, however. Oy.

Most dogs are content to wear a few paths, pick out a special place to do their business thus killing the grass, maybe dig a hole or two. Tula has done all of these and then some. She has completely dug out our landscape rock and torn up the weed guard beneath it. All of it. John is worried that our grass, which has been perpetually soggy since November, won’t recover from her stomping all over it. The backyard used to be our refuge of beauty. Now, to hear John tell it, it sounds like it will need nothing less than a complete overhaul… which neither of us really want to do. At least she has not chewed any siding off the house as my friend’s dog once did. Yet.

I rather expected these changes. But it has been quite an adjustment. Last summer and fall Tula was still so much a puppy. If we went to the back yard to play, she would completely spaz out, and jump all over the girls… to the point it wasn’t fun to play because we were too busy rescuing the girls from her. I worry, I really worry, that if she doesn’t calm down a bit, we will end up surrendering the backyard completely over to her… and that’ not a sacrifice I want to make.

I’m willing to–and have committed to–share my space with her… This spring we’ll have to figure out a way to take the backyard back, at least part of it anyway.

She’s a good girl. Sort of.

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