One year with Gravy

Gravy, a small black and white speckled Australian Cattle Dog, resting on a backyard ottoman

Today we’re celebrating Gravy’s adoption day. It’s been a hard, joyful, and fulfilling year with this little dude.

The first few months were admittedly hard for me. I didn’t realize how my grief from losing Boomer and Helo would present and I struggled with puppy blues for weeks. It was a weird mix of sadness, guilt, and regret and it was rough.

Gravy is a sweetheart, but definitely a different type of personality than we were used to. A sensitive and scared boy, he needed extra time and especially space to learn to trust us. He’s firm with his boundaries and doesn’t like to be held or showered with affection. You don’t realize how often you kiss your dog on the head until you have a dog that doesn’t like it. 😅

But with the help of a local dog behaviorist and with lots of time, we’ve built a strong connection and he’s blossoming into such a curious, loving, and happy guy. It took 11 months, but he now wants to sleep in the bed with us. Every day he gets braver, more excitable, and more affectionate and it’s been really wonderful watching that happen.

Gravy lounging in the grass; Gravy resting his head on my leg on the couch

From day one he was a really good walker. Very calm and polite and it’s been a joy to take him on hikes and through the horse trails in the neighborhood next to ours.

Clay and Gravy walking on a dirt trail; Gravy walking along a cement wall in some dirt

He loves playing tug and catching a lure, wrapping his foot around it to keep us from taking it again.

Gravy biting a lure on a rope wrapping his leg around it; Gravy on his back in the grass holding a fabric pull rope in his mouth

He hates the rain, but loves being outside as much as possible.

Gravy laying on a backyard couch; Clay holding an umbrella above Gravy on a rainy walk

His favorite thing is to help you with a task, inspecting every weed you pull or supervising as you put together IKEA furniture. And of course he loves to nip at your heels as you run, herding you around the backyard.

He’s becoming more of a cuddler with time, but we first really noticed him connecting with us by laying on our feet outside. He keeps close in his own way. I have a hundred pictures just like this. Excuse my socks and sandals.

Gravy laying on my feet; Gravy upside down on his back on my feet more photos of Gravy laying across my feet outside more photos of Gravy laying across my feet outside more photos of Gravy laying across my feet outside

Things with Gravy feel so comfortable and routine now that I can’t believe I was ever worried. We are loving life with Mr. Boat and we can’t wait to see how he continues to grow and change.