It’s a tradition to tell the story of your birth on your birthday, right? I don’t have kids, but my mom always tells me mine. And while I don’t have kids, I’ve got a tiny mutt that turns 14 today! Since I wasn’t there for his birth, I count 8 weeks back from the day I got him as his birthday. When I got Desi, I was told that he was 8 weeks old, but I’ve got my suspicions that he was younger.
Anyway! Here’s Desi’s “birth story.”
On August 6th, 2004, with under a week of thought, I packed up my Isuzu Rodeo and drove out to LA with my best friend at the time. She was already living in Studio City and needed a roommate, and I’d always wanted to live in Los Angeles. We arrived on the 9th and my first goal was to get a dog.
I had a dog growing up. Spike was my present for my 9th birthday, and he lived to the ripe age of 12 before we had to put him to sleep. Spike was a solid run of a Westie, and the sweetest dog you’ve met. Ever since losing Spike, I’d spend hours researching tiny dogs. Dogs that I could fit in my pocket and take everywhere with me. (I know, I know) Narrowing down the list, it seemed that a mini-Yorkie or a little designer dog was MY dog. (again, I know.)
Remember – I arrived in LA on August 9th. I got Desi August 23rd. Within those first two weeks of moving to an entirely new city, I’d already auditioned for, interviewed and filmed a reality show where I tried to win a dog. Luckily, you cannot watch it any longer. I didn’t win the dog. I wasn’t even able to complete my exit interview, because I was crying so hard in some park off Olympic. More determined than ever to find my perfect pocket pup, I scoured Craigslist (again. I get it. I didn’t know better at the time.) for MY dog. Finding a listing for a 2 lb “morkie poo,” I went to an apartment in West Hollywood to meet my dog.
Two guys lived in this apartment behind Fairfax, filled with bongs, pot on the tables and a variety of odd-looking “pocket pups” in the kitchen. Morkie poop would have been a better name for this poor little dog. I’m not sure I even saw his face – he was a mass of hair that didn’t really move. I put him on my shoulder, and he stayed on my shoulder. However! There was the cutest little all black with four white paws chihuahua looking pup that I immediately was drawn to. There were two of those in the kitchen – I was told they were brothers, and shown a photo of a black male poodle and an all white chihuahua. “These are their parents! They live in the house behind this building with my parents, and they breed them.”
I picked up little white paw to take him in front of their mirror and see what we looked like together, when suddenly his brother, who was no bigger than my fist leaped over the baby gate that was keeping this oddly bred pups in the kitchen to come over to me. The guy that lived in the apartment’s jaw dropped. “There’s NO WAY he can make that jump!”
That was my Desi. He picked ME.
I was told to come by the next day to pick him up. Coincidentally, the next day, the guy I was going to marry was flying to LA for a visit. “Can we please not get him for a couple days? I’d like a few days with just you.” That was a red flag I should have paid more attention to. As if “I’d like to get you a boob job before the wedding” wasn’t already enough of a red flag. It was the first of many nights he would be jealous of this small, perfect dog, culminating with “Why don’t you just marry Desi?”
This time, I picked DESI.
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