Chloe is our dog, and she is a Bernese (not Bermese) Mountain Dog. We adopted her on November 29th, 2009 when she was 9 weeks old.
I grew up with dogs, along with a number of different pets over the years. We had cats, gold fish, hamsters, rabbits & a couple of parakeets. You bond differently with different species of animals, but from my perspective it was always the dogs & cats that left a forever paw print on your heart and in your memory.
My wife on the other hand only had cats. She loves cats, so I gave her one for Easter the first year that we were married, and that cat, Panther, lived 15 years. And though she was a gift to my wife, Panther ended up being my cat. It was after Panther passed away that I found out that I’m allergic to cats! So, I realized that I could never have another cat, and I really wasn’t in a hurry to get another pet.
Then one Sunday Kate and I went to Staples to pick up some items. Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on your perspective, Staples wasn’t open yet. So Kate decided to go into the Dollar Store to look around, while I decided to play with the puppies in the pet store that was next to Staples. I had done this numerous times before, usually without Kate knowing, but I never had one of the puppies catch my interest enough to want to bring it home. But be aware, I had been asking Kate for a dog for years, to which she always replied no, no, what part of no are you not getting??!! You see, Kate never had a dog, never wanted a dog, and never liked dogs! And, I always wanted a Golden Retriever, and no other dog was going to do.
So into the pet store I go, and the store would always have a few puppies near the front window playing together that you could interact with as well. So I played with all them for awhile, but there was no Golden Retriever in the bunch, so I wandered to the rear of the store where the rest of the puppies were kenneled in glass pens. That is where I spotted a small tri-colored puppy napping. The puppy woke up, took one look at me, and walked over to the glass where I was standing to get a closer look. I tell everyone that this is when she was sizing me up with an imaginary tape measure and decided that I was big enough to handle her when she was full grown and that I would do. She then walked back to the far end of the pen, sat down, and just gave me the cutest puppy face she could muster.
Just then one of the store clerks walked by and I asked if I could take a closer look at the black puppy, and she asked, “Oh, the Bernese Mountain Dog?!” To which I simply replied, “never heard of them, but yes, that one.” The clerk retrieved the puppy and placed the two of us in a special 1/2-walled area with a door that was used for people to get familiar with the dogs. Now I might want to mention that Kate had been texting me letting me know that Staples was open and it was time to go, to which I would ignore, or would reply with, “ok, playing with one of the puppies.” I asked Kate to come into the store a few times and meet the puppy but she had no interest & refused. Well, eventually she came in, for no other reason than to drag me out, but I got her to spend a little time with the dog, and after 2 hours Kate said enough, it’s time to go, without the dog.
So off we went, and the puppy went back into her kennel. On the way home I called friends and family that already had dogs to get their perspective on dog ownership, and as much as they loved their pets they didn’t recommend that we get a dog, due to the fact that a dog does tie you down, much more than a cat does, which only bolstered Kate’s case for not getting one.
Not to be detered, once we got home I started researching Bernese Mountain Dogs, and all the pros & cons of owning one. Come to find out, they are a large breed dog, with females weighing in around 100 lbs., and males weighing up to 150 lbs. Not having owned a dog since I lived at home with my parents I couldn’t quite visualize how big of a dog that would be, but in my mind’s eye it seemed like a reasonable size. I mean really, how does that saying go, “Go big or go home”! I’m all about big!!
Later that day we had to go out to run some more errands, and after which and before going home I asked Kate if we could stop at the pet store one more time, to which she replied, “Really Michael, are you serious? I don’t want a dog! You already spent 2 hours in the store and I don’t think we need to go back there.” Well, long story short, she finally relented and we stopped back at the pet store for another look. Believe it or not, we spent another 2 hours there playing with the puppy. I even took the puppy out of the 1/2 wall enclosure and let it run around the store, and that’s when it happened! You see, during my research I found out that BMD’s are bred to be very good with children and protective of them. So, in walks a family with two small children while I’m playing with the puppy. The puppy spots the children walking down the aisle, she stops in her tracks, her ears perked up, and she went bounding over to them with great enthusiasm. At only 9 weeks old the dog recognized children! You see, my wife and I have 21 nieces & nephews, and numerous great-nieces & nephews, and it was at that moment that I realized how good she would be with all of them and I had to have her.
There was only one obstacle standing between me and the puppy, and that was Kate. So I walked over to Kate, with puppy in my arms, and after Kate saying no numerous times earlier in the day, she took one look at me holding the puppy and said, “You want the puppy don’t you?” To which I simply replied, “I do.”
Now, what you need to know at this point is that this all happened within days of my birthday, our anniversary, and Thanksgiving. Kate looked at me and said, “Fine, you can have the dog, but it’s your dog to take care of. Happy Birthday, Happy Anniversary, Happy Thanksgiving………..Merry Christmas, …………Happy New Year……..” At which time I replied, “Ok, ok, I got it!! Thank you honey!!” And Kate tells everyone that we both stood there with tears in our eyes, mine were tears of joy, while Kate’s were tears of fear! Having never had a dog, Kate had no idea what to expect or what to do, and quite frankly I thought I did, but was I in for the surprise of a lifetime!
We sealed the deal with the store clerk, and Kate went about the store picking out everything in pink- leash, collar, toys and feeding bowls (much to my dismay, as I wanted a black collar & leash, but knew better than to argue at this point). And Kate even named her before we left the store, Chloe. Unbeknownst to either of us at the time, so began a life changing event of which we are still experiencing, but I can tell you this, at this point we have no regrets and hopefully still have many memories to make with Chloe, some of which I hope to share with you, as there are many!
Kate with Chloe on adoption day – 11/29/2009
6 thoughts on “Chloe-Bernese Mountain Dog”
Chloe Girl! Always love this story & her, too, of course!
Thank you, and Chloe sends her love as well!
I couldn’t believe it when I saw you were writing about Chloe. I was thinking after reading your last blog that I should send you an email asking you to write about Chloe! So though I never sent the email wheeler minds work alike apparently 🙂 love the story.
Lol…..that’s too funny Kathlee! I had a draft copy reminder in the queue for a while and decided that today was the day to finish and publish it. So glad you liked it! When it comes to Chloe, trust me, there is no lack of material!
i am a dog lover so i am so happy you convinced Kate. Chloe is adorable.
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Cindy-thank you for reading. Kate is an avid dog lover as well now and when we’re out she will often ask strangers if she can meet their dog. And Chloe thanks you for saying that she is adorable. 😉
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