I have just been offered an amazing job. It would be quite a pay raise and is in a city to which I have always wanted to move. It’s almost a dream job. I’ve been joking with my friends ever since I heard about it. “Yeah, that’s gonna be my job. Why wouldn’t they want me?” Never once did I think it would actually happen.

Last night I had a message when I got home from work. My hyperactive dog was jumping on me so much that it was difficult to hear. They wanted to know if I would be interested in talking details. I started drooling. Thinking I might have been dreaming, I called them back. It would be a year-long position with an option for more. I would live in an amazing old house and have access to a car whenever I wanted it. No rent, no bills, a brand new city, and lots more money to boot. Perfect. They told me to think it over and get back to them. What was there to think about? Of course I wanted it. Oh yeah, one more thing. Living in this house, this amazing house with a pool and maids, with an amazing view of the city skyline, I would not be able to bring my dog.

My legs are covered in bruises. So are my stomach and my arms. I’m sure I have some on my back, but my body is too sore to turn around and see them even in the mirror. I am constantly covered in a layer of slime from my dog, who can’t seem to keep her tongue in her mouth. She is a friendly mutt. She has a great heart and sometimes I think she is smarter than me. She drives me insane.

I found her on the side of the highway during my lunch break at one of those corporate jobs I never held for very long. I knew if I drove by, I would be devastated on my way home to see a puppy puddle in the middle of the road, so in my fancy work clothes and all, I pulled over to pick her up and bring her back to work. I figured I would call my mom to come take her to animal rescue. My mom wasn’t at home. Neither was my sister. Nor my roommate. Finally, after I fed her Vienna sausages from the vending machine, my friend Margaret came to pick her up so I could get back to work.

That night on my way home, I went to get her from Margaret’s house. She had given her a bath, but the poor girl was still covered in ticks. All in all I pulled 68 off of her. I brought her home with me, figuring I would call rescue my next day off, in two days. There was no way I was ready for a dog.

Her name is Feraloca Guapita Marie Schulist. Feraloca: wild and crazy girl. Guapita: cute little girl, sometimes, even though my mom calls her the ugly one. Marie is the middle name of all the women in my family. And then Schulist, because she is my little girl. Fera for short. She lives up to the wild and crazy part. She even annoys other dogs.

There are stories of her that are infamous at the dog park. She ate a couch. A large couch with a recliner on either end. She ate an entire bag of prunes with a bottle of Advil and some Tums to wash them down. After that she also destroyed the walls at my old place. I never knew how projectile poop could be. She peed on one of my best friends while they were sitting on the couch. She peed on me. Also, let’s just say she’s not really welcome at her grandma’s anymore. Any man still willing to come over to the house needs to wear a cup. It’s almost as though her giant paws have a magnetic attraction to that special place. Her tongue is on autopilot, constantly trying to get every inch of exposed skin, and even inches that aren’t exposed. She never stops. She never gets tired. She wears me out and beats me up and never comes when I call her.

But then there is the morning. She likes to sleep in more than I do. When the alarm goes off she buries herself back under the covers where she likes to sleep. She cuddles up right next to me. When I pull back the blankets, she gives me the best “C’mon mom, wouldn’t it feel so nice just to snuggle a little more?” And she is right. It always does feel good.

I want this job. I want this new lifestyle. But more than any of it, I want my cute little wild and crazy girl.