The Garden City Telegram
7/4/2014
SOUTHWEST LIFE

Back in the dog business again — and it's twice the fun

We have twins.

Not sure if they really are twins, but that's what I call them.

Anyway, we have two basset hound puppies.

After losing our precious Millie, we are pet owners again.

Ironically, we were looking into getting another dog just before Millie got sick.

But instead of one dog, we decided to get two.

Not sure what we got ourselves into, but we're in it.

With our kids in and out of the house this summer and heading back to college in the fall, they can keep each other company.

Penelope, or Penny as we mostly call her, and Oliver, or Ollie, have already made themselves at home.

I looked at the living room one morning, with their toys strewn all over, and realized I was raising kids again, only this time they have four legs.

It's nice to have some activity in the house again. It had gotten pretty lonely.

There's a lot of activity in our home again.

Puppies have a lot of energy, even basset hounds, who are notorious for their love of naps.

It's fun to watch them play together, and when they crash, they sleep like they are rolled up into a ball.

Anyone who has lost a four-legged family member can understand the void that's left, so even though Ollie and Penny require a lot of attention, its great to have them.

That's does not include the cat's opinion.

Our cat has taken up residence upstairs, sleeping under one of the beds.

Initially, she only came downstairs at night to sleep on my feet.

Slowly, she has started to make an appearance during the day.

She watches the dogs for awhile, then hisses at them and retires to the safety of the upstairs.

In time, she will become more friendly or at least let them know it's her house.

She got along with Millie because they grew up together. Millie even learned to wash her face like a cat.

Right now, the cat is bigger than the puppies, but that won't last.

Two dogs means everything is doubled — food, water, toys, the attention they need and twice as much time spent training them.

Despite the number of toys they have to choose from, Penny still thinks the couch tastes best.

They also love to chew on shoes, so nothing is sacred, and nothing gets left unattended.

When they disappear into another room and become quiet, you know nothing good is happening.

We have our work cut out for us, but we wouldn't want it any other way.

It was a long wait to get the dogs after we lost Millie, and it's good to have a full house again.

Patrick Murphy, of Humphrey, Neb., is a former assistant managing editor of The Telegram.