Dad gets a Boxer… and a little advice?

Today my father is bringing home a dog.

We talk occasionally, my dad and I, about volunteering or about my own pups, Uno and Maybe. Sometimes we discuss Pit Bulls and their bad rap. And he’s a regular Save a Dog user, virtually fostering animals through the DogTime Facebook application. But I had no idea his interest was anything more than a show of support for my professional life and personal passion.

So I was stunned, thrilled, and (mostly) skeptical when my dad announced he was thinking of adopting. We traded emails about what type of dog might be a good fit for him, but I still wasn’t convinced he was serious about this. Perhaps I didn’t want to get my own hopes up.

Then, after several weeks of visiting shelters and perusing listings from local rescues, my dad connected with a three-and-a-half-year-old Boxer. The newly christened Xena will be the first animal in 25 years to enter my folks’ house as a permanent resident.

I’ve given all the advice I can think of for making Xena’s arrival comfortable and smooth. But each dog is different and each homecoming unique. Certainly, readers, there are hiccups you have experienced (and triumphed over) that I haven’t, so today I’m asking for your input. If you’ve got a word of caution, a story about a rocky beginning that eventually worked out beautifully, or just an idea for making the transition a happy one, please comment below.

I’ll forward the link to my dad and keep you posted on their progress. Thanks, readers! Happy 2011…