Before we had kids, Chuck and I had dogs we treated like kids. I worried about them. I made sure they were eating the right food, getting the right amount of exercise and were being cuddled lots. Their well-being was very important to me and I treated them like the family I thought they were. Chuck and I bought each other birthday cards from the dogs. We read books about dogs. We took lots of pictures of the dogs. In short, they were my babies. And then I had a baby. You know, a human one. I knew this human child would change my feelings about the dogs, but I don't think I realized how much those feelings would change. After having Jade, the dogs went from being exercised daily to being exercised whenever I could fit it in. Sometimes this was daily, sometimes it was monthly. When Belle tried to cuddle with me on the couch at night, I would indulge her for a few minutes before pushing her away. I made sure they ate, but it was rarely at a consistent time anymore. I told Chuck to play with them when he was home because I felt bad for them. I wanted to kill them numerous times when they ate Jade's books (yes, books- our dogs eat books). I cursed them daily when picking up dog hair (ok, I did that before I had kids too). I loved watching Jade play with them and laugh at them. Since Piper, our poor dogs have become so deprived it's hard to describe. I told Chuck to start feeding them and letting them outside before he left for work because I couldn't do it anymore. I never let Belle cuddle with me because I have someone touching me all.day.long and at the end of the day, I just want some space. I have half-wished that one of our children would develop allergies to them so that I would have an excuse to get rid of them. I have to remind myself on a daily basis that I like dogs and want my kids to be raised with dogs. I know that in a couple years, I'm going to be glad we still have dogs, but right now it's hard to see them as anything other than more work and a way to get lots of "wow you're a crazy lady" looks when I'm on a walk. Today, Chuck is meeting his parents to hand the dogs off. They will be keeping them until we get settled in Oklahoma. It will make things so much easier while showing the house and his parents are nice enough to take both of them! I'm hoping this time gives me some time to miss my dogs, but I must admit the first (and so far only) sad thought I'd had about them leaving came yesterday when I realized that Piper will be starting solids while they're gone and I'm gonna have to clean up all that food off the floor myself.