Life with a scaredy cat. Um, dog.

I don’t know about all of you but it’s been storming here like crazy. Thunderstorms every day at 4:00 p.m.

Not that I’m complaining, because it must be keeping Charlotte out of The Great Drought of 2012 that’s gripping the rest of the country. And I do love a good thunderstorm. (When inside though, not running through it with sopping shoes and clinging, wet hair while lightning cracks above me and hail pounds the pavement. Hey, we’ve all been there at some point.)

It’s been raining cats and dogs, you could say, which brings me to Oliver.

Oh, Oliver, love of my life. (Sorry, Raleigh). He came to me at a time when I needed something and someone to take care of, and though he keeps me on my toes (and money flying out of my purse), he’s made life funnier, more joyful and so full. I love coming home to his wiggly, crazed-with-energy little body, and I love snuggling with him while watching TV or going to bed.

(As I type this he is fully laid out across my lap, holding one of my arms nearly immobile in a way that makes typing difficult and pushing the laptop away with his sprawled limbs. Apparently I am inconveniencing him.)

He can be sweet and loving, and he can be an emotionally unpredictable handful. Either way, he’s worth it.

He’s also a total scaredy.

Now, I consider Oliver a rescue. Not because I got him from a rescue organization, but because he came from what I strongly suspect to be a puppy mill. I read an article in Charlotte Magazine last week about all the puppy mills that thrive in North Carolina due to lax breeding laws. I had always been suspicious about Oliver’s origins, but the article confirmed that home breeders who advertise online (check), won’t let you in to see the parents or living conditions (check) and produce animals with congenital health problems (check) and behavioral issues (check) are likely puppy mills. Oliver was a bit older than you should buy a puppy, the last of his litter and appropriately discounted. Plus, when I asked if he was potty trained, the breeder (“breeder”) told me that she just cleaned out his cage every day. So, there you go.

He’s awfully cute though.

Since he pranced his way into my life and heart at 11 weeks, Oliver’s always been timid. So I’ve been working on his socialization with dogs and people, and he often goes to daycare, but he’s still a bit scared of everything.

In a nutshell, Ollie does not tend to enjoy:

  • Other dogs
  • People
  • People who run
  • People on bikes
  • People in/on anything with wheels
  • Children
  • Children who run
  • Children on bikes
  • Children who move quickly in any way
  • Loud noises
  • Table saws
  • Vacuum cleaners
  • Brooms
  • Mops
  • Ceiling fans
  • His reflection in glass surfaces
  • Orange traffic cones
  • Large (and loud) vehicles
  • Guns
  • Fireworks
  • Scissors
  • Grooming equipment of any kind
  • Dried leaves
  • Large, rolling trash cans
  • Windshield wipers
  • The ocean
  • Sand
  • Rain
  • Baths
  • Water in any form
  • Most inanimate objects

But there happens to be one thing that doesn’t faze him one bit: thunderstorms.

Go figure.

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