We are a married couple who adopted our little Russky, Nikita {aka Nicky, Nicky noodle, little man, Nikoli, the Nickster, crazy dude, goofball, puppy love, etc...you get the picture!} from St Petersburg, Russia four years ago. Join us as we stumble through the joys and perils of parenthood, while our son teaches us a few things along the road...


Nicky & the Sabakas (dogs)

Kris and I each had a dog when we first got together. Kris had Blitzer (a medium-large size black & white spotted lab mix) and I had Bailey (a small-medium yellow terrier mix). For about 8 years now, we have considered them our children. We were nervous that Nicky might not take too kindly to his new "siblings". The dogs that Nicky has seen during his lifetime have been mangy packs of street dogs that used his orphanage playground as their personal potty...yuk! Much to our chagrin, the first night we brought Nicky home to Texas, he wanted absolutely nothing to do with Blitzer & Bailey. In fact, he screamed at the top of his lungs if they came near him. It was late in the evening, and we had been traveling all day (about 24-ish hours including the time change between Plano & Moscow), so we figured we would put the dogs outside while Nicky was up and about in the house and we'd try again the next day.

Well, the next day wasn't much better. He did like running to the window to see what Blitzer & Bailey were up to in the backyard, however, he would spit at them and shout something in Russian! (probably nothing nice, either!) Our poor four-legged kids were shunned to the either the backyard or our office. We figured the only thing we could do was to keep trying. We would go outside to "visit" the dogs, making sure Nicky was watching, and would give them lots of love. We would instruct Nicky to "be sweet" and would carry him by the dogs if they happened to come inside and he was around. Eventually he made friends with our next door neighbor's dog, Patches. Patches, bless his heart, is about 17 years old and is smaller and doesn't move around much.
We've been home just over a week now, and after much prodding and coaching, I am happy to announce that Nicky has gotten over his fear of Blitzer & Bailey! He follows Blitzer around and loves on him frequently. He's a big fan of Blitzer "kissing" his hands during dinner time...Blitzer is a big fan of this too! He's getting lots of extra treats these days! We are still working on the "be gentle" part; he likes to grab Blitzer's snout tightly and kinda shake it, and pats him pretty hard (in place of petting him). Problem now is, the dogs are pretty much "over" Nicky! After a full day of Nicky following Blitzer around and tugging on him, Blitzer squeezed between my legs to hide from Nicky between me and the washing machine! Needless to say, we still have some work ahead of us, but at least everyone is getting along enough for now!

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