J said that he thought Homer was an archetypal cute dog. He leveled the evidence of random passersby who tell us how beautiful our little mutt is. He didn’t, though, start out this way. When he came into our lives one year ago—after a fortuitous rescue on the side of a road—he was bald with mange and bug bites. He was malnourished and probably dehydrated. He may have been left behind by a pack of wild dogs. He may have been turned outside by owners once they knew he was sick (this is common practice in Kentucky). Even though friends called him the ugliest puppy ever, we instantly fell for this mangy mutt.
His hair began to grow back as soon as he was treated for mange (it wasn't the contagious kind, but rather, the kind that all puppies inherit from their mothers, but that most with healthy immune systems can keep in check). The disease came back in December and so he recently completed another three-month course of medicine.
Homer's most primal love is the water. He swims every day at the creek during our runs. He also loves, loves, loves the bath. I think that we first discovered this in November. Once it gets cold, I love taking a bath each night. As it turns out, so does Homer. He first casually sauntered over and licked the water during that inaugural bath. Then he backed up, galloped, and flung himself into the warm tub with me. Now it's a real chore to keep him out of the bath (sometimes a lady likes bathing alone!).Homie began life by sleeping in a crate. He then graduated to the blue couch (now known as Homer's couch), and then about a month ago—and without prompting—he decided that he'd prefer to sleep on the tempur-pedic with us. He mostly likes curling up between us or at my feet. We momentarily talked about breaking this habit, but really, who can resist this guy?
The best part about Homer is that he's so loving. After spending more than a decade with an aloof (albeit marvelously devoted) hound, I'm really enjoying sharing my life with a pup who just wants to be cuddled and kissed. And cuddled and kissed some more.