by Otto W., Age 15
, Grade 10, Amery High School, Amery, WISCONSIN USA
Teacher: Mrs. Ruehlow
“c’mon guys were going to be late!” said my littlest brother, he was the most excited, after all, it was the puppy he asked for. This morning was the morning we were going to Amery’s dog Boarding Kennel and breed center Black Brooke. A new batch of eight Bernese mountain dog babies had been born. Seven of those eight pups were boys and there was one girl. Our family had eyes on the girl for eight weeks prior to picking up our new family member, since the pups had to stay with their mom for eight weeks. And today is the day everyone’s been waiting for, for over two months. We finally get to adopt Brandy.
That was her name we picked out, not after the alcohol brandy, but after the hit 80’s song “Brandy you’re a fine girl by looking glass”. It was a classic for our family to listen to it on special occasions such as Christmas or my dad’s birthday. We felt that it not only fits the looks and personality of a Bernese mountain dog we could also ask Alexa to play brandy whenever we wanted and could call it the song for our family dog, it was the perfect name.
On the way there we were so excited we could hardly wait, even though it was only a ten-minute drive, and of course, we had to play that song. We had seen our dog many times before we got to adopt her, as the owner of Black Brooke lets us visit to see our pup, but this time felt different, this time I can see her as a member of our family.
When we were there in the cold of January you could smell the classic wet dog smell, I suppose that’s what a Boarding Kennel is supposed to smell like. And walking in the doors if you would’ve blindfolded me, I would’ve guessed that I was in a swamp with the musky odor consuming my nose, but in no time I could ignore it. Running up to us were the parents to the pups Barny and Alice both very beautiful, joyful, and happy jet black and snow-white dogs, but what we came for was in the back were Anna Melberg escorted us too. There she was, a pup the size of volleyball an all jet-black dog with a white underbelly, brown snout, the cutest brown furry butt, and arguably the best feature on her were her brown very expressive eyebrows. Whenever somebody says something or express something towards her, she does the cutest thing when she tries to understand what there doing by tilting her head and raising one eyebrow. Anna also said that she is the most hyper Bernese mountain dog she has ever seen, which almost caused my dad to turn her down but it’s perfect for our family as we are a family of five so switching turns taking walks plays a big role, and she also has a lot of options to play with. All these qualities make Brandy especially distinctive and special to our family.
Eleven months later its been a rough journey, but a meaningful one and full of unexpected occasions. One of the main problems with Bernese mountain dogs, and especially brandy’s case, is that they are known to be one of the hardest dogs to potty train. Nearly a year later I think we just finally taught her that she can’t go to the bathroom in the house, but I’m still not one-hundred percent sure. To add to the potty problems of a Bernese mountain dog is when she was six months, she adopted a parasite called giardiasis, this is spread through eating other dogs’ feces and makes the dog diarrhea nearly six times every day. It was so bad it got to the point where if she was inside for over thirty minutes the next person to walk downstairs would find a treat waiting for them. Of course, we didn’t know it was a parasite until it got to this point as were we took her to the vet to get a diagnosis. Our veterinarian has prescribed a special dog food that she still eats to this day, and a prescription pill that cured her within a week.
Brandy is a very special case of a Bernese mountain dog as whenever she sees her tail she tries to catch it until she hits something, or she is going so fast she falls over. She also has a very hard time learning things and especially new ones as we’ve been trying to teach her not to chew our belongings by saying, “Brandy don’t bite!”, and “No!”, and she responds with a long demon-like growl as she rips the thing right from your hand. This along with other things such as her very selective hearing between “Come!”, and “Treat!”, and that she still thinks she’s a lap dog at one-hundred pounds, has caused me to believe her mind is basically a flatline and she is mentally slow, but that’s ok, “it’s cute” I tell myself.
They say that a dog is a man’s best friend, and I stand by this all the way. Brandy has done so much for our family without anyone realizing, I think that we take her presence so much for granted, and how much she has brought our family closer together. I can’t imagine a life without my sweet “Lovin’s” next to my side. All these unique characteristics make Brandy the diamond in the rough and the best dog for our family.