Last week Star, my very special living companion arrived at my house. Star is a medium-sized poodle mix. I’ve had her for a little over four years. She is an odd dog who has way too much energy and a strange love for dragging her body against couches and floors. I was unable to bring her with me when I moved in September because I hadn’t finished unpacking. I also didn’t have a doggy crate for her. Once the crate problem was solved, I was able to fetch my dog. For nearly two months, I was concerned with how she would behave in the house, and how much my daily schedule would change. As usual, my fears were overblown. It has been just over a week and Star has been awesome.

As long as I walk her three times a day, she is very good around the house. Walking her has also been great for me. In the week since her arrival I’ve explored more of the neighborhood. This is more than I’ve done in the two months since my move. During our walks, I’ve noticed lots of small businesses and have even had the pleasure of talking to my neighbors, including the block captain. Walking a dog makes for a fantastic conversation starter. The walks have also been good for clearing my mind, observing others, and allowing me to reflect (when I’m not busy trying to keep Star from eating trash). The walks have been so enjoyable that I almost regret waiting on the dog to leave my house on foot. Now I understand why people go for walks, or for a run around the neighborhood. These activities work both the mind and the body. In addition to going outside more often, I have someone here to keep me company. Her presence is a great relief for those moments when I’m feeling extremely lonely or stressed.

If you live alone, do you keep a pet as a companion?

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I couldn’t end this post without a picture of Star.

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