Puppies are cute for one reason only. And that is so that you don’t kill them within the first two weeks.

Now before you all gasp with horror and outrage, hear me out.

For the past eight years we have been living in a complex that did not allow dogs. I have had a dog or dogs from when I was a child. My first dog was a gorgeous tan and white Cocker Spaniel called “Theodore”. He was the love of my life and kept me company in all my solitary adventures as a nerdy tom boy. When he was knocked over by a car, I was shattered and cried for weeks.

Throughout the years, my closest companions were the string of dogs that broke my heart every time they moved on to the great kennel in the sky.

The last dog we had was Cuddles. A pitch-black Labrador who sadly died from biliary. Her death heralded a devastating period in my life. The night after her death, we were burgled. The thieves broke into the house, while we were all sleeping and stole everything of value. They took school bags and blankets right off my daughter’s bed. They stole my brand new computer and all the electrical appliances.

To this day I thank God that we were protected. None of us woke up.

That very next day I packed up the entire house and moved out of that farm house and into the complex where we spent the next eight years.

When the time came to move again, I immediately thought of the dogs that had been such a vital part of my life.

Our first adoption was Sherlock the Snowflake. He’s a seven-year-old German Shepherd rescue dog from the SPCA and he was the perfect dog to wean myself on. If anyone shouts (which is often in our house) he thinks we are yelling at him and he skulks off to curl up in an inch of a corner of my introvert housemate’s room.

He had clearly been in a good family before (although we know nothing of his history as he was a stray). Apart from the initial attempts to mark his territory indoors which were nipped in the bud, Sherlock was a gentleman and stepped outside to do his daily ablutions. He would wait patiently for his dinner and then wander off for a quick drink of water, before nuzzling you for the obligatory head and ear rub.

After that he would curl up content in the boat of a bed we bought him. It was all very dignified and peaceful. An easy transition.

And then Flash arrived.

“Gott im Himmel”, as my housemate so eloquently put it.

Flash-the-little-shit is a pavement special with the cutest black mask on her face. Being a rescue pup from the SPCA, this thug has absolutely no manners and is an accomplished drama queen. Her arrival was announced by hysterical yelps and crying when she met Sherlock for the first time. You would think he was using her as a chew toy based on her reaction after a polite sniff of her butt.

House training commences. Dear-God-in-Heaven-I-am-going-to-kill-this-dog. Despite all the pepper and nose spanks and chasing her outside, this rapscallion will come inside the house to perform her ablutions. The doors are open. We are all sitting outside, but no, the carpet is softer for her delicate I-am-so-entitled-butt.

Climbing on my furniture is another no-no. She knows it is not allowed because the minute she sees me, she bolts off the couch. I turn my back, and she is back on there. Seriously????

I am convinced she does it on purpose. She is highly intelligent. Whenever she makes a mess in the house, she knows full well she is going to get wacked and pepper in the nose. So she adopts the classic droopy puppy eyes, and hysterical yelping, that convinces everyone else in the house that I am just the wicked stepmother of the house. They all turn on me, and then molly coddle her conniving ass. I am pretty sure I saw a smirk on that little fur ball from Hade’s face.

So why haven’t I killed her yet? Because the crafty brat has perfected the I-am-so-cute puppy routine. She bounces like Tigger when she sees you and then covers you with wet sloppy kisses – convincing you that you are the most wonderful, bestest person in the whole world and she loves you to the moon and back.

I fall for it.