dog in woods
Enjoying a hike in Fall 2009.

Later this week, we’ll celebrate the sixth anniversary of Sirius Black’s adoption. I find this almost impossible to believe, but it’s true.

A lot has happened since we first brought him home, and he lay motionless on the floor of our living room, giving his best impression of a dog with no personality. When we first brought him home, I was an animal welfare professional, but far from a behavior professional. My husband—who wasn’t even my husband yet—had never had a dog before. All three of us had a lot to learn!

dog with treats
Practicing “Leave It” with cat treats.

We’ve made some mistakes along the way. In fact, have some useful advice stored up for the future; things like, don’t take your noise-phobic dog to a sesquicentennial of a Civil War battle, unless you want to spend the entire day walking at the far end of the battlefield from all the events.

But, mostly, I have good memories. We’ve been through a lot together, including three moves, several job changes, and all the disruptions in routine that go with these changes. Through it all, Sirius Black has stood by us, reminding us to enjoy every day, and never forget to take a walk (unless it’s thundering—then you should stay in the back of the closet).

dog with flowers
During a trip to the National Arboretum this Spring

Perhaps the biggest change, at least as far as readers this blog are concerned, is the creation of my business, and the earning of my CPDT-KA certification and my MA. There are a lot of people to thank for those, of course, in addition to my own hard work, but I would also like to thank Sirius Black, who was with me every step of the way, reminding me why this work is important, and that I love it, and that sometimes it’s important to put the work down and go for a walk in the woods.

Thank you Sirius Black, and here’s to six more years!

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