This Article is About
miniature fox terrier
black labrador
white cat
pekingese
canines
golden retriever
squirrel
Dog Days
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Dog Days

So what can I say about the dogs in my life? Are they just companions in life or are they more human like? How do you treat your own pets?

For me I have to go way back to my early childhood. In fact, the first pet that I am cognizant of was a cat. Her name was Missy and lived to be quite old, nearly 20 years if I'm not exaggerating too much. A wonderful white cat that to this day is the best "mouser" I have ever known.

As far as dogs go though, it would have to be a big black labrador named Butch. From the time he was just a puppy until his later years, we were buddies. I can distinctly remember sitting with him as he slept after a long day of playing. The snoring he did seemed to fascinate me, but even more was his awareness of things; his awareness of me.

A handful of dogs have passed through my life that had that same awareness to them. There was the Golden Retriever, the Scottish Terrier, a PekaPoo (half Pekingese, half poodle), an Old English Sheepdog, and the current Miniature Fox Terrier named Snickers. Each of these canines seemed to have a firm grasp on my mood and thoughts.

I am really not sure how that works. Experts would tell us that the heightened sense of vision, hearing and smell are what contribute to a dogs seeming ability to read our minds. I would guess that this allows a dog to truly pay attention to everything we do. Think of what it would be like if we as humans had that same ability.

As I sit writing this particular article, my small terrier is taking in everything going on all around her; all at the same time. My movements, any noises I make, the sound of a bird, and the movement of a squirrel among the tree branches are being captured in total. I watch as she makes choices on what is of concern or interest, all of the while I get the vast majority of that attention.

Should I slide a foot across the floor or shift in my chair, her focus moves towards me. It would be quite amusing to translate what is going on in her mind. When I speak to her I can only imagine an old cartoon. In that cartoon panel, the dog owner is saying to his dog "go fetch the stick Ginger, go fetch the stick Ginger." But all the dog is hearing "blah, blah, blah Ginger, blah, blah, blah, Ginger."

In some ways I think the Snickers (and other highly intelligent dogs such as mine) has learned the English language. There are words that instantly perk her ears up and get her undivided attention. But the smarter side of me understands that dogs respond to single word cues. I can say "lets go outside" and what Snickers understands is the word "outside."

Yet for some reason we care for canine pets with an almost human-like quality. We will dress them up and talk to them as though a child. We find the best doctors for them when they fall ill and grieve uncontrollably when they die. I for one do not equate a dog, cat or any other animals with that of a human being. I firmly believe there is a difference.

What I do equate is respect and care for all living things. There are plants, insects, birds, cats and there are dogs. All are part of this great life and can bring joy to it. Yes, I love my dog for what she brings into my world as companion, guardian and playful sport. When she is gone, I will find another pet to fill her spot, but I will look back with fondness and admiration for the time spent together.


Street Talk

Great article. They are so nice to have around. They are like-human at times.

Reply
  about 6 years ago
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