My baby bear is 10 today.
Queen Lola. Bear Bear. Sassy bitch. Momma dog. Protector. Snuggle monster. Old lady.
Angel and I adopted Lola when we were 19 years old. I was a brand new wife going to school and taking care of a baby, and I absolutely needed another responsibility to add to my juggling act. We had been going back and forth with the idea of getting a puppy to add to our little family for a while but were mostly indecisive. There was an ad online for English Bulldog/Rottweiler mix puppies; it was an accidental litter from a family who couldn’t keep their female bully who was in heat away from a ready-to-procreate male rotty. The puppies looked like tiny little bears so of course we had to go take a look. Amidst the whining and jumping puppies, was a little angel hanging out by herself in the corner of the kennel. When they let her out, she ran straight to a bush to lay down, out of the sunlight and the rowdy mess of her siblings. At that very moment we knew she was the one.
Vivi was only 6 months when we brought the little puppy home. Lola was this tiny fluff ball of a puppy that was calm and loving, who just wanted to snuggle and hide in the darkness under our couch. Vivi learned a lot from Lola… how to crawl, how to pick up toys with her mouth, how to drink out of a water bowl. Eventually we had to break Vivi of a lot of puppy habits that she was picking up from following Lola around all day.
But Vivi taught the puppy a lot too. Lola was Vivi’s snuggle buddy, her pillow during movie time, her playmate to wrestle and play tag with. She grew up with Vivi’s tiny hands all over her ears, paws, tail, belly, and even had them shoved in her mouth once or twice because the crazy kid was curious see what was in there. All of this taught Lola to be calm, to be loved willingly, to allow little to phase her, and to be protective of her human companions.
By the time Izzy was born, Lola was a prime nanny dog, seasoned in the art of tolerating small children. The day that we brought the baby home and placed her on the coach to meet Lola, we realized that we would never find a dog as loyal as our Queen Bear Bear. Lola laid her head down gently next to brand new sleeping baby, touched her nose to hers, and sat there with her for what seemed like forever. She was on guard until the baby woke up and no one could convince her otherwise.
As Lola has gotten older, her sass has surpassed that of the grumpy elderly woman on the block who just wants kids to stop walking through her grass and hands out pennies for Halloween. She is the queen of the house. She only listens when she wants to, all of the toys belong to her, and if she wants you to give her some snuggles, there is no avoiding that giant block head of hers. She’s picky about new friends but fiercely loyal to those she loves. If she doesn’t like you, you’ll know it right away because there will 120 pounds of dog coming at you with teeth bared and guttural monster sounds filling the room. She loves staying with her grandma because she gets spoiled and treated like a queen. And don’t you dare pretend to mess with the kids or wrestle them because you’ll get a holler from her like no other.
My Bear Bear. She has been my companion through sickness and health, my lady friend for life. My protector and lazy snuggle buddy. She always knows when I need her and doesn’t hesitate to let me know when she needs her momma. She’s my furry child, the real second born (don’t tell Izzy!). I wouldn’t be the same without her.
We will be celebrating the last decade of her life with lots of snuggles, treats, toys, hamburgers, and probably a photo shoot, because that’s just her style.
Happy Birthday Queen Lola!
We love you!
❤ La Lady Valdez