Regardless of how his day goes, Carl Dahlstrom knows it will be impossible to keep a smile off his face the second he opens the door to his downtown Winnipeg apartment.
Ted, his miniature Goldendoodle puppy, makes sure of that.
"It doesn't matter if I'm away two days or two hours, he still treats me the same," Dahlstrom said. "It's a lot of excitement every time I come home."
Dahlstrom has always loved dogs. His grandparents had one while he was growing up, then when he turned 10-years-old, his parents got one as well.
So, after he and his girlfriend, Louise, were settled in Winnipeg following Dahlstrom's acquisition in October of 2019, they started looking for one of their own.
"We just started talking about it one day and she obviously looked online everywhere," he said. "We found this breeder and we went out there and saw some of the litters. It's dangerous to go there because they're all so cute.
"We fell in love with Ted pretty much right away as we saw him. After eight weeks, he came home to us."
Video: FEATURE | Carl and Ted
As popular as Ted is around Dahlstrom's apartment, he's even more popular with everyone else in the building.
Whenever they're in the lobby about to go for a walk, Ted attracts a lot of attention. Dahlstrom doesn't mind though, he feels it has helped his puppy become as social as he is.
"I always thought it would have been nicer to be in a house, but it worked out really nice for us. He sees new people every day," Dahlstrom said. "All the people in the building love him, so he's very spoiled. He gets treated with belly rubs pretty much a couple times every hour."
During this season's NHL All-Star break and five-day player break, Ted experienced his first flight.
Dahlstrom, Louise, and Ted flew to Banff, Alberta as a way to unwind from the busy hockey schedule.
"We were pretty nervous going on his first flight. Luckily he was small enough so we could bring him on with us. He didn't have his own seat obviously, but he was down below us, which was nice," Dahlstrom said.
"He loved every minute once we got there. We got these boots for him and he could do everything. It's tough to do a lot of activities when you have the dog with you, so we went for a lot of walks, hikes in the mountains."
Now with the NHL season paused, Dahlstrom likely isn't leaving the house as much. But that doesn't stop Ted from bringing a smile to the Jets defenceman's face every day.
"He brings a lot of joy," Dahlstrom said. "He's one of those positive things that came into my life this year. I've been really happy with him so far."