The kid's all adore Fergus. They use him as a pillow or a footstool. Yesterday Christopher caught Elly trying to ride Fergus like a horse. When he told her not to she indignantly told him "but Fergus is my horsey, I NEED to ride him!" He becomes their child when they are playing house. The girls like to hold him down and dress him in clothes. He is the family pet who is most loved. He is MY dog, or perhaps more aptly, I am HIS person.
Fergus is a Boston Terrier / Beagle mix. We adopted him from the Quinte Humane Society. He and I bonded at first sight, literally. When I held him in that loud sterile little room, I cried. Yes, I cry if the wind blows sideways, I am an emotional wreck when it comes to my kids. I have never, ever had a reaction like that to an animal. I am not really an animal person. I like animals enough that I have always had one, and that I would never ever hurt one, but I am not an animal person. I stood there holding that little dog, his paws on either side of my head like a baby, and I knew that HE was MY dog. The whole car ride home he sat poker still, just staring up at me with such gratitude. I did not know that then, but he imprinted on me.
From the very second that we brought Fergus home he would follow me everywhere. He was my little black and white shadow. He likes to play with the kids, but only if I am within his sight line. I have never had a dog like that. Our other dog, Maggie was the most wonderful dog you could ever hope for, but she would have gone off with strangers happily, and did (the dog catcher would just bring Maggie back home whenever she wandered off). Maggie loved everyone. She would happily sleep with each of the kids at the end of their beds. At night she would wander the halls, and go into each of the kid's rooms to check on them before she would settle in for the night. Maggie was a family dog. Fergus is My dog.
It is actually a pretty novel experience for me to be someone's favourite. At my house Daddy is the favourite. It's nice to feel that kind of love, even if it's just from a little dog. When I make the rounds to tuck the kids in and kiss them goodnight I have my little shadow with me. He then follows me back downstairs when I go. The kids have desperately tried to get Fergus to sleep with them. They have given him treats as a bribery attempt, but as soon as I leave, no matter how good the treat, he follows. It makes me feel a little bad for the kids. Don't get me wrong Fergus loves to play with them. He lets them turn him inside out. He is beautiful with them, but he is my dog.
It turns out with a little internet research Boston Terrier's pick one person. They are amazing with children, they love lots of people, but they have one person. I guess that I am just his person. I feel badly for the kids that he is not a family dog, but that is just his nature.