Love After Loss: Our Story
Q: Thank you for sitting down with us today to share your story, Jeff. Can you take a few moments to tell us about your journey to fatherhood with Gunner and Koda?
A: Our journey to finding our boys was a bit of a bumpy one!
Three and a half years ago we lost both of our dogs within one month of each other. It was absolutely devastating for me and my husband. The house that once had the sounds of squeaky toys, paw footsteps, and playful barking was now very quiet.
No longer did we have sweet little puppy cuddles! Our daughter said it best when she said the house felt empty and sad. We both realized within a few months that we missed having a dog to love on.
The first time that we stopped in the Barking Boutique, we learned about their commitment to matching families with a puppy that is a perfect fit. When we went in, our eyes were set on a little Maltese that looked identical to our sweet little Maddie. When Jacob picked her up, he instantly started to cry. The store manager who was assisting us gently said to us, “I don’t think you are ready yet.”
She was right – we were not ready. And we knew that that puppy was not the right fit for us.
When she did that, it solidified for us that the Barking Boutique is not about just a sale. They truly are about making sure the puppies and families are a good fit and the dogs are going home to a family that is ready – emotionally, physically, and mentally.
Q: That is beautiful, I am glad that our team member was able to put your feelings ahead of her own or corporate profit to do the right thing. So, when was the time right?
A: A couple of months later we stopped in again. My husband pretended it was just to play with the puppies! He liked the idea that you could go in and have free puppy play time. He said he just needed a puppy fix. That was when we met Gunner! Gunner is a black and tan King Charles Cavalier Spaniel. From the first moment we met him and played with him, he melted our hearts with his sweet, beautiful eyes. We both knew immediately that he was the one to help heal us from the loss of our girls and to complete our family again! The same store manager was there that day and was helping us again. She remembered us from before and knew right away that Gunner was the perfect fit for us! He has been a beloved family member since!
A year later, we began to think about a sibling for Gunner. And once again, The Barking Boutique was the first place we went!
David, the owner of The Barking Boutique, knew that Jacob wanted to get another King Charles Cavalier. We had been in to look at it a few times, but I was hesitant to get another puppy just yet. So, David got a beautiful little tri-color King Charles Cavalier from the same breeder as Gunner. He named him Jacob! Of course, my Jacob got emails with all the new arrivals and instantly had to go meet puppy Jacob!
David already arranged with Jacob that we could take home puppy Jacob for a trial visit to see how he did with Gunner. We did not want to have a second puppy that wasn’t a good fit for Gunner. Little did I know, this was simply a plot to get me to fall in love with puppy Jacob – now Koda! And Gunner and Koda became instant friends! Gunner is very protective of Koda and Koda loves to play with his big brother. The next morning after Koda’s overnight, I looked at Jacob and said “Well, I guess he is not going back huh??”
Q: Tell me about the dogs today. What are their personalities like?
A: Both of our dogs are different but together they are a perfect duo. Gunner is the most loving dog you have ever met. He loves people more than anything and needs your full attention. He just loves to sit on your lap and be petted. Koda is full of. He is always up to something! I have never met a puppy who loves to play fetch more than he does!
And it is funny to see how they interact with us – when you go to love on Koda, Gunner comes right up to nudge him out of the way. Koda wants to be loved but it is fully on his terms. Koda needs to be in sight of us at all times. He is very particular about his spot in the house – sitting on a chair in my office while I work or on the chair in Jacob’s office while he works.
And they love social interaction at the dog park! Gunner doesn’t care about the other dogs – he goes right up to other people and demands attention. Koda is all about being chased by the other dogs. They both love the beach, laying in the sun, and floating on our rafts in the pool!!
Q: What did you appreciate about the overall experience with The Barking Boutique?
- They were aware of our emotions and feelings, which we needed and appreciated in our process.
- Very particular about our home and what the living environment would be for the puppies.
- They went out of their way to explain and share where the puppies came from. Gunner and Koda both came from the same breeder. This was very important to Jacob. He wanted to know that the parents of our boys were loved and well-taken care of. He was able to see pictures and videos of the breeders and knew they were high-quality breeders.
- The team did full physical to make sure the puppies were healthy. Cavaliers can have heart issues at an early age and The Barking Boutique made sure both puppies had strong hearts before they were put up for adoption.
Contact The Barking Boutique
We would highly recommend David and team at The Barking Boutique. If you are interested in learning more about us, our puppy breeders, or are interested in any of our available puppies for adoption, please contact us at (616) 446-6766.