Maggie May

June 1, 2008
By Sarah St. Pierre, Manchester, NH

My mom and I had wanted a dog for a long time. A dog was the last thing my dad wanted, and my sister did not care because she’d be off at college soon. We joked about how the new puppy would be the replacement for my sister. My mom and I tried talking my dad into getting a dog many times. My mom told me that my dad had had the meanest, ugliest dog when he was younger, which was probably the reason he didn’t want a dog.
Still, we tried to convince him. Every time I got a good grade on something, my dad would ask me what I wanted for a reward. “Pick anything you want,” he said. I smiled at him, and he knew what I was thinking. “Except four-legged creatures that bark,” he added.

A couple weeks later, my neighbors came over with their new dog while we were taking down our Christmas lights. Their dog’s name was Charlie, and he was a West Highland White Terrier (a “Westie”), the kind of dog my family and I were thinking of getting. I emailed my neighbor, Stephanie, and asked her where she had bought Charlie. She gave me the breeder’s website. I emailed the breeder, and we set up an appointment to meet. My dad started to warm up to the idea of having a dog, so he went along with it.

My mom and I went over and met the breeder, Diane, and all her Westies. She had them all very well trained, and I wanted to take one home with me. I couldn’t wait to add our name onto the waiting list for the next litter of puppies.

I received a pink food bowl for Christmas (for the dog). My mom thought of the perfect name for a girl: Maggie May. I was not sure about a name if the dog was a boy, maybe Jack. But I really liked the name Maggie, and I really wanted my puppy to be a girl.

Because I was at school, my dad stayed on the computer all day waiting for Diane’s email telling us that Lacey, the mother of the puppies, gave birth the day she was due. We had to be one of the first to answer the email to reserve a puppy. Since there were only six puppies, the first six families to answer would get one. When I got home, Diane finally emailed us. I was so excited. I had been waiting so long for this. I told my dad to hurry as he was emailing Diane; it seemed like my dad was taking forever to make sure the email was perfect. He finally sent it, and we had fifth pick to choose a puppy.
A couple days later, we found out one of the puppies had died, so I had the last pick. There were three boys and two girls in the litter. My chances of getting a girl weren’t very high, but my mom and grandmother told me it would be easy to pick the puppy. It would be the only one left, and I wouldn’t feel bad about leaving the other one behind.

That August, I could finally take my puppy home. It was on the same day my sister had a going-away party at our lake house, so before the party, we went to pick up the puppy. When my mom and I arrived at Diane’s house, Diane was at the door holding a little white puppy with the biggest ears I had ever seen. We still tease her about her abnormally large ears.
“It’s a girl!” said Diane. I was so thrilled and beamed with excitement.

We went home to pack everything to go to the lake. My grandparents and my friends Emma and Molly came over to see the new puppy. We played with Maggie, and then my mom and I left to go to the lake. My sister’s friends thought Maggie was adorable and loved playing with her. Maggie was so small; I remember her sleeping on my dad’s stomach as they both took a nap in the recliner. My dad put together a little area upstairs for Maggie to sleep. I remember waking up the next morning to the sound of pitter-pattering on the floor, and then seeing Maggie run back and forth, playing with my parents.

Back home, I realized what it would be like to have a baby. I did nothing the next few days but take care of Maggie. I slept downstairs with her so she wouldn’t be alone. Every time I left to sleep on the couch in the other room, she’d start whimpering in the kitchen. I had to take her outside once every hour. It was summer vacation, so I didn’t mind spending so much of my time taking care of her.

Maggie gave us a reason to get to know everyone and their dogs in the neighborhood. There are so many white dogs in our neighborhood; we call ourselves the White Dog Society. Maggie has some relatives nearby, my neighbor’s dog Charlie is her brother, and a dog down the street is her stepsister. We joke about how a black lab that lives a couple houses down is her boyfriend.

I’m very glad to have Maggie; it’s nice to have someone so excited to see you every time you come home, with a nice wet kiss on the mouth and a wagging tail. She can make me laugh all the time, even when I get mad at her for doing something wrong, because she’s too cute. Once my dad got used to having a dog around, even he fell in love with her. We laugh at how much time he spends with her, when he was the one that didn’t want a dog in the first place. Our life would be dull without our Maggie May, and we love her very much.

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