You Had Me at Woof.

I love dogs. I am a dog person. Everyone that knows Kevin and I knows the our dogs are our fur babies. I can’t watch an ASPCA commercial without getting teary eyed (or now crying, thank you prego hormones!) and wanting to give them my entire pay check. I cried for a good hour the night I watched Marley and Me (while holding my pugs) and I am still scared for life from watching All Dog’s Go to Heaven when I was five years old.
This year for my mom’s birthday Kevin and I got her the book You Had Me at Woof: How Dogs Taught Me the Secret of Happiness. Honestly, I picked it up because the cover kind of stole my heart (yes, I admit I am the kind of person that will read anything with a dog on the cover). You Had Me At Woof is a love letter to man’s best friend and journals the love, laughter, heartbreak and lessons had by their owner Julie Klam in the span of her valuable time with each of her beloved dogs. I had not read the book but after picking it up I was stopped by three people in the book store telling me how amazing the book was, needless to say between the charming bug eyed Boston Terrier on cover and raving reviews I was sold.
My mom read the book in three days. The next time I was over she lit up about how amazing the book was and told me I had to read it…now. I took the book and really forgot about it. I never had any good down time to pick up a new book and really sink into it. Then opportunity struck. I was sick and at home one night after working a very long 11 hour day and Kevin just so happened to be working an opposite close shift. I had planned to come home and sleep my feverish, achy, sore menace away but couldn’t get to sleep. I migrated with all of the pillows from our bed as well as the comforter to the couch and made my sick nest for the night. I flipped television channels with no luck and tossed the remote on the coffee table where it landed on the book. I figured why not pick it up read a few chapters and doze off (it was a good plan in theory).
In all dog books you are pretty much guaranteed heartbreak. To avoid making my sinuses feel less like a swamp I told my self I wouldn’t let myself read more than a couple of chapters, because there is no way anything sad could happen that early in the book and I didn‘t want to bring on the pregnancy water works. Bad plan. I was wrong, so very wrong.
I am not into spoilers so I won’t go into details but this book made me laugh, made me even more thankful for my little best friends and certainly made me cry. Klam’s uncanny ability to be open and honest about what being a dog owner really means touched my heart.
I read the entire book in one sitting and cried from about page 47 to the end….and then some more after. Once the sappy dog book mixed with my pregnancy hormones I was a goner.
Kevin came home about an hour after I finished the book to a blotchy, puffy eyed, sobbing mess. Lovingly he joined my sick nest on the couch along with our fur babies and managed to calm my blubbering, sniveling mess of emotions.
The next day..still a little emo. We watched the morning news together over breakfast and the first story they featured was one of a woman who died in a landslide in Brazil. Nothing was left of her life besides her dog and a small unmarked cross made of scrap wood on her grave. Her dog found her grave and laid on it without leaving for two days. Needless to say after watching that story, I cried through breakfast.
Dogs are amazing animals. They are loyal, caring, dedicated, unconditionally loving and selfless. It is no wonder they are a man’s best friend…they are everything we (should) strive to be. There is something so reassuring to coming home to a wagging tail and to realize you made their day just by walking through that door and being you. Some people aren‘t dog people, all I can say is they are missing out on one of the best relationships life has to offer. I think Mr. Roger Caras said it best..”Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.”


2 thoughts on “You Had Me at Woof.

  1. My husband and I sat on opposite ends of our couch with our lab in the middle when we watched Marley and Me– both heaving sobs consistently and uncontrollably for the last fifteen minutes of the movie. I’m glad we’re not the only ones.

  2. Domi – I saw that story too of the woman who died in the landslide in Brazil – and saw the picture of her dog sitting at her graveside – oh my gosh, it was so sad and so moving and just so much love was evident…yep, I cried too… Noah is inheriting sensitivity genes from all sides of his family! Ha! I need to get the WOOF book. 🙂

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