Some of you may know by now, and some who don't have the pleasure of seeing me in person may not know, that my husband and I are expecting our first child in March, a little boy.

I have decided to announce it in my column now because, well, I figure the timing is right. I felt I should let readers know that the winds of change are blowing at our house and our pups are in for a rude awakening very soon, especially my little Maizy.

We are so excited to embrace this next chapter in our lives but I am worried that not everyone in our household will be so welcoming of the change. Maizy has been used to being my "baby" for six years and being the center of attention. As there will be a learning curve for us when we become parents, there will also be a learning curve for the dogs in our household. There will need to be a lot of changes made, I am sure. I have no doubt that after trial and error, we will all adjust fine.

The good thing is that over the last two years, Maizy has let up a little on her "Sonya obsession" and has become closer to my husband. I can see them getting even closer when my new little "obsession" arrives and my focus shifts.

I have also struggled with a huge decision - one that I can assure you, I haven't taken lightly. I think the timing is right to close a chapter in my life. As I embark on parenthood, I have decided to end this column, "It's a Dog's World," because frankly, very soon it won't be just a dog's world anymore.

Who knows, maybe some day I may be back again, writing about family life. Time will only tell.

I want to take this opportunity to tell all of my readers, who have read my dog columns over the last five-plus years, that I really appreciate it. I hope you found it entertaining and sometimes heart-warming. I have certainly enjoyed writing it and I will miss it.

To me it definitely seems like it is time to move on, like the Tom Petty lyrics to one of my favorite songs by the same name, which I once quoted in this column.

"It's time to move on, time to get going

"What lies ahead, I have no way of knowing

"But under my feet, baby, grass is growing

"It's time to move on, it's time to get going."

Moving on to this next chapter won't mean I will love my dogs any less. They will always hold a big piece of my heart. You can bet I will be "brainwashing" our child from the very start to like all things canine, in fact, he already has doggie books, outfits and toys waiting for his arrival. You can bet his mom will even humiliate him by making him dress up as a dog for Halloween some year. Yes, I would go that far. Come on, I'm the type of girl who dresses her dog up as a skunk for Halloween!

In all seriousness, since my dogs hold such a big piece of my heart, I can only hope as our little one grows that dogs will hold a piece of his heart, as well. I will tell him how much it means to truly love animals because when you do, the love will be returned to you tenfold. I will teach him to love and respect dogs, so he discovers, as I have, how much they truly can enrich your life. I know they certainly have enriched mine!

Thanks for reading!