Now that is becoming easier to choose your identity I would like to identify as a Labrador. What’s not to like about that – plenty of love, nice warm bed, lots of exercise and most important of all masses of food – not just what’s given to you but whatever you can steal as well.. If you’re a doggy person, dogs are part of your family. We dote on them and we are bereft when they die. We also feel free to embarrass them by putting reindeer antlers on them – viz the faces above full of patience and embarrassment. They allow us to dress them up, carry them around in bags – not Labradors obviously but tiny little chihuahuas. You can, if you so wish, buy your dog an extensive wardrobe. In some ways dogs are better because they can’t object if you force them to wear a pink tutu – although I think you might be risking it with a Pitbull. My son says that I treat dogs and children the same and expect the same results – I’m not sure that I actually command my grandchildren to ‘Sit’ on my word, but I do think there any many parallels. In particular, too many (in my opinion) parents are frightened of disciplining both their dogs and their children in case they stop loving them. I’m not suggesting that you more you beat them the more they’ll adore you, although dogs to have a tendency to love their masters however unkind they are. Cats, who are arguably much more discriminating would just leave anyone who didn’t treat them with the respect they think they deserve, but dogs will wag their tails in what they imagine is an ingratiating manner when they suspect that you are cross with them.
I think it was in Country Life magazine where they said that dogs are better than a partner because the later you come home the more excited they are to see you. There are many other good things about your dog. They never complain if you want to spend time with your friends. They don’t care If you call them by the wrong name. They don’t care if the house is untidy and they don’t mind if you don’t tell them you love them all the time.
Dogs have no sense of anticipation – they don’t look forward to Christmas they just enjoy it when it arrives. When they get old, smelly and incontinent and you have to make the awful decision to take them to the vet, they are blissfully unaware of what is about to happen unlike your old aunt who may also be old, smelly and incontinent but you can’t very well say ‘We thought we’d take you to the doctor on Thursday and have you put down’, although that solution might well suit everyone!
Dogs also have innate good taste (not necessarily about food – having just seen one of mine devour a cow pat) but regarding the people they like. I remember a beater on a shoot some years ago being offered a well known brand of pasty. He declined saying ‘My grandson gave me one of those recently, I tried it but it was so nasty that I gave it to the dog,. He ate it but he had to lick his own a**e afterwards to take the taste away.
My dogs don’t watch television but if they did I’m quite certain they wouldn’t be watching Vardy v Rooney – what on earth is that about? It wasn’t very interesting when it was actually happening I can’t think that it will be better now. Dogs, on the other hand, will happily stare at a tree for hours after a squirrel has disappeared up it – but I can see the point in that.
Not everyone loves dogs but my life would be much emptier without my four legged friends.
Here’s wishing everyone a Happy New Year and just to be going on with …..