These are the trials and tribulations of being a pup aunt. You’d think it’s like being a regular aunt, oh no, it’s actually worse. You see, puppies can’t speak, but they can definitely use those dangerous puppy dog eyes on you. Recently, I was the victim of a puppy stand-off. Kobe, my puppy nephew, and I just went on a 5.2 km walk. Well actually, I went on a 5.2 km walk, Kobe walked for 5 kms and was carried like an infant for 0.2 kms – but I’m getting ahead of myself. 

It started like any other 4th walk of the day. Kobe was an angel as he patiently waited for me to get his harness and leash on.  Everything was going well, until we were going to turn right to go up Pine Street.  At this point, Kobe decided that he didn’t want to go right, but left, down Pine. No biggie, I can manage this – I’m flexible. We crossed the road and continued down the main road. I remember it like it was just an hour ago. I felt a shift in his demeanor at precisely 8:07 PM – I’m getting pretty good at sensing these changes.  Kobe decided that he was no longer interested in walking on the sidewalk and would much rather move into the road. 

Now, being a responsible pet aunt, I obviously tried to pull him back onto the sidewalk and tell him no – using an appropriately stern voice. At this point, Kobe decided that it was either me or him and immediately laid down in the middle of street. There I was, in the middle of a main road, puppy lying there like I had beat him. After assessing my options, I decided that I would need to be that crazy pet aunt who was carrying her pet nephew on a walk.  It was an all-out mutiny. I should have seen the signs, going left instead of right. In hindsight, all the warning signs were there. Kobe had officially entered his rebellious tween years. 

The young months go by so fast … when they actually listened to you and didn’t give you sass. So, we make it back to Pine, and I let him down. He looks at me with such disdain and anger. I tried to make it better, by giving him praise, but he saw right through that. That first block back up, we really had to work hard to repair our relationship. Things slowly got better, until they didn’t. 

There was a larger dog on the other side of the road, and Kobe really wanted to play with him. He whined and guilted me into crossing the road to let him play with the other dog. Things started off well, with the mutual smelling of butts, until they both decided it was time to play. A wresting match ensued between the larger dog, on a leash, Kobe on a leash, and me. I was most definitely the loser in this match. In all honesty, it was awkward having both of my shoulder joints being in pain, without my back also being in pain. 

Once I finally removed us from the entanglement, we were getting closer to home, and there was still not a pee or poop in sight – 4.5 kms after we started. We saw a woodpecker on our travel back up the hill, and Kobe and I bonded over our shared dislike of woodpeckers. As we continued, we met another dog, and this dog mom seemed lovely, asking how old Kobe is, and telling me her dog is 2 years old. How looks can be deceiving as the 2-year-old, following the mutual butt sniffing ritual, looked up to his mom proceeded to bodycheck Kobe a good foot. The mom apologized profusely, and I assured her that Kobe was quite used to giving and receiving bodychecks, thanks to his older human brother. But really – inside, the pet aunt in me was seething. 

We were almost home, and still no “business” had been completed. We started walking towards the lake, but Kobe isn’t a fan of the people there, and a few may have crossed the street when they saw us. To be fair, I may have had a slightly crazed look in my eyes at this point, but I can’t be certain. 

As we turned back towards home, the rebellious streak makes another appearance, when Kobe decided to again sit down and not move. I eventually had to praise the little angel so that he would get moving again. Gentle parenting is not for the faint of heart. And still, no pee or poop in sight. 

At this point, I’ve decided that Kobe must be dehydrated and constipated, so we would just have to go home. As we made our way along Pine at the house kitty-corner from home, Kobe finally decided to pee. We made it home, and at that point I really needed a glass of wine. 

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