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Beagle as Personal Flotation Device

By Posh Pets Rescue Adopter, Sean Maloney

It was a little over a year ago that my girlfriend, Maya and I decided to rescue a dog. I remember spending countless hours online (when I should have been working or eating lunch) scouring 1-800-save-a-pet.com for cute corgis, pernicious pugs, or the ubiquitous mangy mutts. Pitbull-mix is the easiest dog to find on these sites, but that was out of the question for us since our silly building does not allow breeds considered to be “dangerous.” Clearly, these people have never met a daschund with an attitude problem. While searching for a rescue, I’ll admit that I considered the less morally correct choice of buying a puppy, not because we wanted a specific breed (though we do have a thing for labs and frenchies), but because I didn’t feel like filling out an application and sending my resume and bona fides to some dog rescuer. And despite my overconfidence in my own Caesar-esque abilities to properly master a dog, I was very nervous by some of the descriptions of the orphans’ personalities and needs—”needs constant supervision and insulin shots,” or “cannot be around other dogs or small children”—were just a couple of common traits.

One year and two weeks later, as the title of this article suggests, Maya and I could not even survive in New York City without our precious beagle, Finnegan. Finn keeps us grounded in reality. He is a constant reminder that there is more to this city than stress, fancy bags and difficult bosses. His loyalty and sheer cuteness warm our weary hearts the second we walk through the door. If Maya goes to bed before I’m home, Finnegan will spurn his ridiculously comfy bed at the foot of ours, and sleep prostrate in front of the bedroom door so that no intruder could get to her without stepping over him. None of the beagle horror stories have proven true in Finn’s case. Sure he barks, sure he bays—he’s a beagle. But he never howls for no- reason, and he shuts up almost on command. Finnegan has made us enjoy our neighborhood more. Supermodels and homeless guys stop us in equal numbers to ask about our handsome boy. Our neighbors and doormen know us by our dog. Police and firefighters crack a smile when we walk past. And yes, since we live near the Empire State Building, we now know how to say, “What a cute beagle” in a least seven languages. And that was all before Uno won the Westminster dog show! Since then I’ve had a guy roll down the window of his huge SUV and shout “UNO!” at us, as well as a pedestrian shouting from the other side of the street that beagles kick butt!

Lots of folks think the City is no place for dogs. I couldn’t disagree more! New York is awesome for dogs. Finnegan has met just about every breed and mix of dog on the planet. He has two dog parks within a 20 minute walk. He has more smells on a one-block radius of sidewalk than exist in all of Canada! He could not possibly be happier. Sure he loves when we take him out to the country. He recently discovered his genetically hard-wired arch nemesis—the bunny rabbit. But he is just as happy in our small apartment (in one of his two oversized beds that take up half our floor space), or out cruising Madison Square Park as he is in the country. Furthermore, the only store we can’t take him into is the grocery store (and restaurants, or course). Finn regularly shops with us on the weekends and is highly skilled at obtaining treats at every stop. We get better customer service when we have the dog with us!

Some would argue that small apartments are not good for dogs. Again, I say nay! Dogs could care less how big your apartment is. Dogs care about how big outside is. You shouldn’t be afraid to rescue a dog because your apartment is too small. You shouldn’t worry about the dog’s past or any “baggage” he or she might have because you can get some of that information from the rescue agency and make a fairly well-informed decision. I don’t think Finnegan realizes how close he was to being euthanized, so I don’t believe a dog loves you more just because you rescued her, but I do believe that if you’re the kind of person who rescues a dog, then you are going to love that dog more, and she will love you more in return.

In considering whether or not to adopt a dog, there is really only one thing you need to know: are you ready to give that dog a stable, healthy, and loving environment so long as you both shall live? We are happy to say that we are totally committed to Finnegan, and in return, he keeps our heads above water and our hearts aglow—a good deal for all involved.