The Puppy Effect (The Effect Hershey Has on My Life!)
Dan, Age 13, Chardon, OH

The day came when my old dog, Bernie, was on the verge of dying. This news made me cry and made me imagine that it wasnít true. Because of this, my mom and dad wanted me to have a new dog so when Bernie died I would cope better with a new dog to comfort and love me. My dad and I started a search for a new dog. We searched the local pound, we went to stores, and finally we found an adopt-a-thon in front of a pet store.

The first and only dog was a twelve week old chocolate lab. The foster family said, ďHe is a very mellow dog that would make a great addition to any home!Ē I knew the minute I saw that cute, adorable puppy named Hershey that he would be the one who would not take the place of Bernie but fill the void she would leave her. The word excitement does not even express the emotion that I was feeling at this very moment. We then got in the car and began our journey towards my dadís house. On the ride back home Hershey was a very curious character. Hershey was in my lap, but trying to get into the back seat to look around. When he noticed that he was not going to get into the back seat anytime soon he stopped squirming and stayed in my lap.

We got home and now it was time for the little guy to go on the adventure around the house. He wandered in and out of all the rooms and he still wondered what he was doing here. Then he got tired and he slept all day long. The next day came and he was still not very energetic. My dad and I wondered what was wrong with him. We thought he was sick because he had a lot of mucus coming out of his nose and he was coughing a lot. We took him to the vet, they checked him out and they said that he had the flu. The vet gave him some medicine to take, and in about a week he was a lot more energetic than you can ever imagine.

The foster family said that he was a very mellow dog, but they were wrong. After about a month, Hershey was like a guy hopped up on meth. He was running all around and he was barking so loud that an avalanche came down and buried a village in snow. He then began to grow; the size of this dog was unbelievable. He was like a giant in a room full of elves. My dad and I began to teach Hershey commands like sit, stay and come. We are still working on some stuff but he has gotten the command sit right.
When I am sitting in my room trying to eat, Hershey comes up to me and starts barking. He barks and barks and jumps on me. When he jumps on me, he scratches me with his long toe nails. This makes me very mad because every time when he comes up to me he wants to play with me and if he does not get his way he will bark and bark and jump until he gets it.

When I am alone in a room without that dog I feel like I am in the Garden of Eden. Every time I go to sleep, Hershey wines and barks to get in my room where I am sleeping. I then have to get up and let him in when itís in the middle of the night. When I let Hershey in, he jumps on me and wonít let me go. He doesnít let me go back to sleep. When I get very frustrated at Hershey, I put him back in the cage until he goes back to sleep. I then can get some sleep until he wakes up and wants to go outside. Whenever Hershey sees me, he goes bonkers. He jumps, barks and howls. When I come over, he goes onto the chair and rolls on his back for me to pet him. When I pet him, he loves it. He barks loudly when I donít pet him.

The abundance of energy he has can be a little overwhelming. Hershey still has a lot to learn but I think he will one day get it and he will have a little less energy. He is a great dog, but he can be very annoying at times. He is my baby boy and will always be it. He will not take the place of Bernie but will be there to comfort me when the time comes that she goes into heaven. I know that the energy he has is because he is a puppy, but I wish he would calm down so we could have a nice time to play together.

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