My mom called me at 9:45 this morning, and I immediately got a dreaded feeling when I saw her caller ID pop up on my phone. Why would she call so early – was it an emergency?

Apparently, one of her Bible study students has to give up her cute little dog for contentious reasons. It’s a dog that my mom has been in love with since she met the little guy about a year ago. My mom called because she’s eager to take this dog home as her own, but she’s not sure she’s making the best decision. What do you think? she asked me worriedly.

Well, my dad loves dogs but hates the idea of animals in the house, and of course, the other things to think about are the costs, both in terms of time *and* money, that owning a dog would mean. My parents already rarely take trips, but now if they got this dog, they’d have to either find a dog sitter or a doggie hotel, which would be a huge inconvenience. Their schedules would need to revolve around this dog, and I could imagine arguments happening over it.

As much as I’d love for my mom to have an animal companion, especially given how much joy she gets playing with this friend’s dog… and her despondency over losing Ed last year, I had to tell her to pass on it. I think it’s in the best interests of each of their sanities, as well as their marriage. We’re all dealing with losing Ed, but I am fully sure nothing, dog or human, could ever replace what he meant to us.

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