My son have a dog name Milo. A male dog. We adopt him from a rescue place down Miami from him was a puppy. Him did have another name when we get him, but we decide to give him a new one. Well, because we come from Jamaica, we say we have to pick a name that remind we about Jamaica. Without even blinking a second, my son lick out, “Milo!” I guess him have nuff memories of times him spend in Jamaica, especially as a kid. So now all of you that know Milo, or know of him, know why him name Milo instead of him birth name of Orion.
From my son little bit, him say him want dog. But me and my wife hesitate because him did very young, and we did figure out say is we did going end up taking care of the dog if him get one. And we never have no desire to take care of dog. So, we never pay him much mind, although we did keep it in the back of we mind. Which part me come from, a place name St. Thomas in Jamaica, in a little district name Norris, dog was not really something we did hands and gloves. Not like how me see the people them do here in foreign. In my Norris bush, dog could not even come on the verandah, much more in the house. But, foreign change us so much sometime.
Since we talking about how foreign change we and dog in the same breath, me remember a story a Jamaican lady we meet here in Florida years ago tell us. She say when she just come to Florida from Jamaica, she use to work with a family as a live-in helper. The people treat her good. Them had a dog that them treat like them pickney. Because she come from Jamaica she could not understand why. Dog bathe. Dog eat good food. Dog have doctor. Dog go for walks. But, more than all, dog live in the house! Anyway, to cut a long story short, she say the family go on vacation one time and ask her to stay at the house to take care of the dog. Well, a job is a job, and she did want the money. Plus, like me say, the people treat her good.
So, she stay with the dog. I guess you can call it say she turn the dog sitter. She say the first night she well making midnight in the bed when all on a sudden she feel something moving against her and she jump up, frighten. When she take stock, it was the dog! Him come into her room and jump into the bed with her! It look like that is what him was use to. She say the first thought that come to her mind was to kick him out. But then, a piece of pity start wash her. The dog did always friendly to her and never bark at her. Always wag him tail when him see her and run up to her. Plus him clean, and all brush teeth. So, next thing she know, she pull cover and cover she and the dog, and the two of them go to sleep, side by side. So, you see how foreign can change people?
So, back to Mister Milo. We finally give in and get him. We drive down to the dog shelter in Miami one Saturday morning. Excitement and wonder at the same time. We excited because me and my wife finally agree that maybe getting the dog would help our son learn discipline. But we still was wondering if we doing the right thing. Anyhow, when we reach, we explain to the nice lady in the office our mission. She direct us into the back where them have the kennels so we could choose any puppy that catch our fancy. Imagine the first puppy my son see, him say that is the one him want. I tell him to go through and look on the rest before him decide. Maybe him would see another one him prefer better. But him say no, that is the one him want. So Orion, now Milo, was the one. We check him records, make sure everything good, sign up to become him guardian, and take him home.
So, you think Milo belong to my son alone now? If you think so, you losing you mind. I sure you always hear that a dog is man’s best friend. Who feels it knows it. We get to feel it, so we know it. We become so attach to him that me and my wife claim ownership too. At least for the benefits, and not for the trouble of having to walk him or feed him when him rightful owner forget. Let me tell you about the benefits, for Milo is a friend with benefits.
Milo give a vibes that affect me in a positive way. No matter if I feel down, worried, or some other kind of negative way, just seeing him put me in a good frame of mind. Not just a good frame of mind, but him bring a smile to my face. Him have a way of always coming up to me and putting him head in me lap, wagging him tail, and transmit comfort right into my mind. Him have another way of either sitting or lying down in front of me and give me the most disarmingly sad, yet affectionate look with him bright, shiny, big black and white eyes that just melt my soul. I never know, in my wildest dreams, that a dog could do this to me.
When I come home from work, him smell the car from I drive through the entrance to my division and according to my wife, him quickly set up position by the door. By the time I reach and put the key in the lock, I hear him barking frantically. When I go in, him jump up on me or go between my legs, tail wagging like Miss Mary tongue when she gossiping to the neighbor. It is like him saying I leave him for the whole day and he just so happy to see me. And it is the same for me. I look forward to see him at the end of the day.
But it is not just me who always miss Milo. My son and wife go through the same thing. Sometimes the three of us go off some place together, usually on vacation out of the country, and so we have to board him out. We leave him in the care of the most wonderful couple that provide a great dog sitting service. They send us picture several times a day of him and the other dogs playing, eating, or snuggling up with them in a couch. Even with the picture we still miss him. So, sometimes when we come back home late at night, and even though we always make arrangement to pick him up the following day whenever time that happen, it is like we want to go straight for him the moment we leave Miami Airport. Is like we cannot wait to see him.
But although Milo obviously love all three of us as much as we love him, him very disloyal sometimes. Disloyal not to all three, but to just me and my wife, for him very curry favour towards him owner. Him would be there jumping and prancing around with me, both of us having a wonderful time together; but the moment my son appear, him abandon me in a flash and make a mad dash towards him. Him have a style of dissing me just like that! Sometimes I feel like cussing. And to think me is the one that always looking out for him and giving in to him when my wife and son strict on him. Let me give you guys some examples of what I mean:
Milo forbidden to be anywhere in the kitchen. Him can go into any other room downstairs, but the kitchen is off-limits. Whenever my wife or son in the kitchen, him will go right up to the edge and stretch him head and look in. It is like a line draw on the floor that only him can see that him cannot cross. But, guess what? If I am in the kitchen alone, him saunter in ever so casually, sniffing the floor to see if there is any pickings or looking at me expectantly for some kind of treat. However, if him ever hear my wife or son footstep coming, one spring him spring out of the kitchen! Duppy know who to frighten indeed! My wife and son always complain say I spoil him, and it is true. True to the point where is like him want to now control my life and dictate to me. Him take charge of me now trying to make me do what him want instead of the other way around. The reason why I say this need explaining.
You see, Milo is a good dog. And a very smart one. Very easy to train, and so him is very obedient. Stop, sit, come – him know them all, and him respect them. Tell him paw and him raise him left paw to give you a low five. You let him out, and him know to sit and wait until you put the leash on him before him ready to dash off. The trick to train him is to give him a treat when him respond the right way to you command. Like when him outside and you tell him come and when him come you reward him with a treat. Well, I in the habit of giving him treat late every evening. Before I give him, I train him to sit on the mat by the back door. So, because of this training, the moment him see me take up the treat bag, him rush to sit on the mat. Guess what, it reach the stage now where when evening come and I don’t give him a treat, I sometimes feel him jump up and put him paw them into me back. Then when I look around, wondering why this dog want to dropkick me with a element of surprise, him rush to the mat, sit down, and look on me. Waiting for me to hand him a treat. So, if dog don’t smart, who is? Him training me to respond to him commands!
By the way, we have to careful about certain words we use around him nowadays. Like the word treat. Him know it well. The moment him hear it, him rush to the mat and sit. So, if I ask my wife if she give him any treat for the day, because I don’t want to give him too much, I have to spell out the word T-R-E-A-T so as not to trigger him dashing to the mat. Thank goodness him cannot spell!