Foreword from your Head F&N Babe-in-Charge Tiff: Each week, we're introducing a new friend with a new story. A story about something that'll make you root for the author reading through her (or his!) ups and downs. A story that will inspire you to chase your own dreams and maybe pursue other paths you may have not considered before. A story that will show you never-before-seen vulnerabilities and suck you in. Every story is different but one thing remains the same. Each person is pushing forward ever-onward, giving 110% to living the best life possible. (Disclaimer: they are not ALL stories, but possibly life experiences too etc.)
The FN Blog needs a lighter touch from time to time and in the spirit of all the hopeful girls and boys this year (we all know what you really want!), we wanted to bring you a little pup story! Every once in a while, I post a snap or mystory of my main man Bambino and he reminds me everyday that even though the first few months were rough, my life wouldn't be complete without him. Here's to hoping that one of your presents barks on Christmas morning! Read along to hear our graphics babe's foster pup story. -Tiffany
F&N Babe Shannon: Just a quick three-day decision and a few photos later; that was all it took for me to know I wanted this foster dog.
I was just starting out my summer vacation, going into my senior year of college. I had previously mentioned to my family that I wanted to adopt a dog for “protection” whenever Tiffany, my older sister, moved to Hattiesburg and we'd be living in a house. (Tiffany wasn’t moving to Hattiesburg for another three months lol)
My current roomie Jenna had a friend who was fostering these two precious pups--one girl and one boy--and she was trying to find good homes for them before they were going to be sent off to the kill shelter. Jenna sent me a screenshot of the post with pictures of the pups and I immediately knew I wanted the boy.
Before trying to get too excited about it, I talked it over with Tiffany first to see if I should get this puppy now/if mom and dad would be mad. I even whined that the dogs would be sent to a kill shelter if we didn’t save them. I mean, I was doing a good deed here, right people? Being my voice of reason, as always, Tiffany told me that she thought I should just hold off and wait and thought that it was too soon for me to get my own pup. She also mentioned that I wouldn’t know anyone who would take care of him when I was at work… All valid points.
Naturally, after talking it over and gaining tons of insight and advice about the topic… I clearly didn’t listen. And just like that, a couple weeks later, I owned the cutest dang puppy ever. Don’t @ me. Jenna adopted his sister ( her name is Nellie Rae), so it really worked out perfectly because they'd be able to stay together and not be split up. Even more reason to adopt them! Bless the Lawd and shout out to Jenna Rose for taking care of my little pup until I could come back home to retrieve him from her. I'd ask about how my new baby was doing and she told me that the pups were very hyper. Very whiney. And had the shits... Bad. What a combo, right? So I decided to make another great decision and wait to tell my parents until literally the day before I came home, that I got a puppy and of course they didn’t believe me… until I came home with him.
My little pup man was unnamed for a few, until I could figure out what to call him. ( Side note -- I seriously don't know how I’m going to name my kids one day because that was freaking hard) Jenna and I went through a long list of names, trying to find the right fit for my new baby. A few of the runner-ups of names were: Toulouse - nickname "Tou Tou", Oliver, and Bear. I just couldn't decide on a name, so Little Pup Man was his suitable name until then. Nathan, my sister's bf, loved to call him "Flea Bag" all the time, and thankfully that never stuck. BBM rolling eyes.. Then on one random morning, I woke up and I’m really not sure how or why, but I decided on Hank! It felt like the perfect name for him and it stuck. But really JK on thinking naming a kid was hard; try spending the first night with a puppy who isn’t kennel trained.
My friends and family know that I am a super light sleeper, so you can imagine how the first couple of weeks went down. On night 1, I thought I was literally going to cry because I couldn’t go to sleep because he was whining so bad. I told myself beforehand that I wouldn’t give in and let him sleep in the bed with me because he would get used to it and I wanted him used to his kennel from the beginning. But joke's on me, because it's almost 2 years later and he still hops on my bed in the middle of the night when he thinks I’m asleep.
Over a year later, Hank still has resting sad face, has chased Egrets on the beach, learned a couple tricks ( he still won’t bark on command K), made some dog besties, participated in 5k’s and has gone through a tearful shoulder surgery. I thought I took pretty good care of myself, but it is definitely a task when you are caring for someone other than yourself – making sure they are fed, happy, and receive the necessary attention. Hank is my best friend! Cliché, but it really is true. I consider him as my family, as most pet owners do; but he IS my child. He's my shadow anywhere and everywhere I go, usually prancing along right behind me. With him, I know I always have someone to talk to, receive no judgement from him, have someone to be up with early in the mornings, and especially not complain about my singing in the car. He's a trooper. I enjoy being able to celebrate our successes like when he’s finally learned to roll over and shake, and mindlessly talking to him when I’m getting ready or just thinking about my day. It hasn’t been easy, and there have been numerous expensive times (vaccinations and a surgery), frustrating times (chewed up new running shoes and peeing in my car), and super s’cute times (when he gathers all his toys in his mouth to bring to me), but nothing that’s worth it in life ever is.
I hope after reading this blog post, you feel connected to my sweet boy. Feel free to give him a follow to keep up with all of the happenings in my Hank Oroni’s life (@hankthehounddawg).