We named him Pedro Sanchez Daugereau because my brother and I loved Napoleon Dynamite.
In the summer before my senior year of high school, my mom surprised my brother and me when she got a tiny puppy Italian Greyhound. He was small enough that he almost fit in my two hands clasped together. On the first day we had him in our home, my brother and I were playing with him in the living room at the top of our stairs. I got him riled up, and he tumbled down them like a rag doll, end over end. I can still remember the yelping and the way my little brother cried and was terrified that something terrible had happened. But Pedro was okay.
I can also remember Pedro being my responsibility at night. We attempted kennel training, and my patience was thin as a 17-year-old. I can remember getting up in the middle of the night to try and get him to go outside, and him refusing to do so, especially when it was freezing cold. I would toss him out in the snow and not let him in until he went. Not my proudest moment.
I can remember him sunbathing in the Alaskan summer months in our backyard, the way he lazed around during those long summer days when the weather finally got warmer.
I remember the time when Pedro stuck his head through the posts in the railing of the stairs leading up to our front porch. The rails were further apart on the bottom than they were on the top, so when he lifted his head up, he got his head stuck and lost his mind. You could hear the yelping throughout the whole neighborhood – it sounded like we were torturing him.
That was how Pedro was. He was quiet and lazy and loved sleeping under blankets. I mentioned we struggled with kennel training – mostly because I ended up just letting him sleep in the bed with me. He wouldn’t want to get up in the mornings, so when I tried to wake him up he would stretch his legs out and push against me as if to say “Not yet, five more minutes!” But then he was kind of a weenie. Any slight pain or scare would make him yelp.
I can remember when he somehow learned how to smile, and he only did it to the people he was really excited to see. Every time I came home from college, he would stretch his whole body out to reach up to me, and then raise his lips and show his teeth in the excitement in a way I had never seen a dog do.
Pedro was a good dog.
I’ll miss you Pedroboy.