I originally thought the topic of Noomi would be a simple one to write about. I have been wanting to write about her ever since I adopted her four months ago because she has become such an important part of my life, but I had a few different ideas about how I should approach the subject. I wanted to make sure I included the importance of adoption and the many ways that she has actually rescued me. I also wanted to do a fun post about the best dog parks and most dog-friendly establishments in Los Angeles. But as I’m sitting here writing this in my bed with her dozing off next to me, what I’m actually thinking about is what time I need to wake up in order to take her out and feed her before getting ready and heading to work on time. Luckily, I take Noomi to work with me every day which definitely made getting a puppy an actual possibility.
Since she just got spayed, I’ve also been giving her pain medication for the past few days and for the rest of the week. Being the curious girl she is, Noomi also managed to maneuver out of her “cone of shame” and pull out two of three surgical stitches in the middle of the night, two days after she got the surgery. As it turns out, you can get through this situation with Neosporin and a watchful eye.
I’ve surprised myself in many ways since I got Noomi and one of them is how much none of these daily tasks annoy me or make me regret getting a dog, for even one second. Taking care of her has given me a newfound confidence and sense of purpose. I’ve written in the past about how in my post-grad life, work is like classes and I view Island & Hills as an extra-curricular activity. Noomi feels like a new category or activity in my life that is rewarding in a completely unique way.
As I previously mentioned, I adopted Noomi from Fur Baby Rescue in Downtown, Los Angeles four months ago, when she was two months old and could fit in the palm of my hand. It was a Friday when I got her and I still remember spending the whole weekend in my apartment getting to know my new little fur ball.
I don’t know whether to credit nature or nurture, but I got lucky because Noomi has a great personality. She’s never aggressive and rarely barks, although she gives the occasional (adorable) attempt at howling with the fire truck and police car sirens, and she’s friendly towards new people. She’s cautious in new environments and when she’s scared, she likes to be carried on my hip like a baby. Against the advice of my vet, I continued letting Noomi sleep in my bed and she actually still does, every single night. She gets under the covers and likes to sleep right next to my feet.
As adorable as these moments are, having a dog is truthfully a lot of hard work. I wouldn’t have felt comfortable with the decision to adopt if I had not grown up with dogs my entire life and knew what to expect. I felt like it would feel more normal to have a dog around, than to not have one, but I also understood and accepted that this also meant that my life would be filled with poop for the next few months. I was okay with that because the constant love and companionship, to me, is worth it.
My ability to take her to work creates a huge advantage for me and was a huge factor in my decision to get her because I’m able to take her out every few hours and she has room to run around and play where I can watch her, with a bed to take her (frequent) naps in.
Los Angeles is a beautiful dog-friendly city but it’s difficult to have the flexibility to give the dog what it needs. It’s important because no matter how much you love a dog, it’s not going to live a quality life if it’s alone or in a cage all day. Being responsible for the life of another being is a huge responsibility. At the end of the day, Noomi depends on me. She knows what time I’m going to feed her and she brings me her toys when she wants to play. At the vet, she clings to me with her nails when they try to take her temperature. She might not be a person but it’s always those moments where I feel like I have to step up as a person and, as cheesy as it sounds, I don’t want to let her down and I’ve never had that type of pressure before. I want her to live a happy dog life and to be comfortable and able to depend on me. Maybe it’s silly because she’s a dog but it’s more about the fact that having her makes me feel like I’m capable of more and it has pushed me to step-up and take one more step towards adulthood.