Articles Index/Living With Your Dog
The nice thing about dogs is ... they love us no matter what. For the most part, they are adaptable, forgiving, and amazingly flexible in their behavior. This may seem like a good thing, but it can be a double edged sword ... at least for the dog.
How many times in an average week do you come home from work or school or from ferrying the kids from one activity or another ... and you walk in the house ... say "hi" to the dog ... and proceed to make dinner, check your email, watch an hour of TV and then go to bed. Or maybe you go out in the evening to attend a seminar, take a class, or preside at a meeting (dog club, of course!)
Whenever it is you finally settle down on the couch or in bed, the little dog you love more than anything in the world is nestled next to you. And that's nice.
But when was the last time you actually did something the dog would like to do? Have you taken a walk, played with a tennis ball, or even given him a good brushing and clipped his toenails any time in the last week or two? (OK ... the part about toenails is not something the dog would choose, but you get the idea.)
Elsewhere in this issue we learn about the passing of Beezer, Lucky, Cori and Ollie. All dogs that were cherished by their owners and who have gone to that place where all good dogs go. No matter how much we love them, the lifespan of a dog is short in comparison to ours. We always lose them too soon. They seem to go from fractious puppy to senior citizen in a flash. And when they are gone, it is too late to say "I wish". I wish we'd gone for more walks together. I wish I'd taught him some tricks. I wish I'd taken the time to try some interesting dog sport.
Make no mistake. Most of us tell our Norfolks we love them a dozen times a day ... and we do. And our dogs seem amazingly tolerant of our busy lifestyles. But it's also important to show our dogs we love them ... by doing something they would like to do ... by returning their love in a way that will leave precious memories when they are no longer curled up beside us on the couch.
ANTIC, March, 2007
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