I am the proud mom of a hairless Chinese Crested dog named Badgley Rowling Martino. In 2012, there was nothing I wanted more than an apricot-colored Maltipoo puppy. If you haven’t heard of such a breed, it’s a cross-breed/hybrid dog obtained by breeding a Maltese and a toy or Miniature Poodle, and I believe made famous by the beautiful Blake Lively who, at the time, had Penny.
I’m sure it’s not hard to believe that “designer dogs” such as the Maltipoo are not easy to find in smaller cities like Little Rock, Arkansas. I looked for several months before finally asking my dad for help. He started his search and came across a breeder of Chinese Crested dogs in North Little Rock. He immediately fell in love with what he described as a skunk-looking gremlin.
At 8-weeks old, he was white with black spots. I didn’t have a name, so I went straight for the thesaurus. Looking at synonyms for “spot,” the phrase badge or insignia came up, and the one name that came to my mind was Badgley Mischka. And so it was. His middle name (Rowling) is much easier to explain…I’m a big Harry Potter fan.
As an adult, all of Badgley’s spots have merged and he’s now almost solid black. He’s a whopping 8 pounds and has the longest, skinniest legs of any dog I’ve ever known. His personality is incredibly sweet. I’m not sure there’s a feeling I love more than when he jumps up in my lap just to put his paws on each of my shoulders to give me a hug. He sleeps in bed with me every night, and can often be found spooning each morning with my husband.
Badgley is also an office dog. He goes to work with me every day. Because he’s hairless, Badgley wears clothes in the summer to protect him from sunburn and in the winter to keep him warm. Some *my husband* might also call Badgley high maintenance. He’s on prescription dog food, gets mud baths at the groomer to take care of his skin once a month, and will generally only drink water out of a glass I’m holding for him. His padded bed in my office is heated and when given scraps of food, he will only eat it when fed to him by a fork. A diva he may be, but rude he is not!
I don’t know if I got lucky or if it’s the breed, but Badgley is a pretty well-behaved dog. When I leave him alone, all he does is sleep in the same spot. He doesn’t get in trash cans. He won’t eat food off people’s plates and he’s never chewed up a shoe or torn up any furniture. He’s completely house-broken and if he ever has an accident inside the house, it’s usually a human’s fault. His one flaw (if you can call it that) is that he has a Napoleon complex. He has a pretty loud and obnoxious bark, and he thinks he’s king of both my house and the office.
Seeing as how I currently have no children of my own, Badgley is as close and it gets to me being a mom. Dogs are amazing and most of us are not truly worthy of them.