I Believe in Dog

December 6, 2011 at 11:15 pm (Uncategorized)


Ah, OK, so I swore blind I would never get a dog, but here I am, a proud dog
owner. My daughter waged a four-year campaign, and eventually we gave in.  

I thought I had an air-tight excuse in terms of allergies, but unfortunately, a friend of mine offered me a bike for the girl. There was a dog, a  coton du toulear and the girl fell in love. Next thing we were investigating hypoallergenic dogs, and a Bichon Frise it was.

Here then are a few observations.

1. I understand the appeal of a dog. It will never let you down. People disappoint you. Love a dog, and it will love you back.

2. All dog breeds have personality traits. Bichons are companion dogs are pretty much all they want is to hang around you. When I’m working on the computer, the dog sleeps near me. If I should get up to get a book, go downstairs or the kitchen, the dog follows. It’s hard not to feel special. When I get home from work, the family doesn’t jump up to see me – the dog does.

3.  There’s something relaxing about a dog.  I’ve come home stressed, and spent half an hour petting the dog, and everything seems to be better.

4.  Choosing a name is very important. As with a child, it has to be something you don’t mind yelling across the park. My son suggested Lester, and we all went, “Lester? No, no. ” Lester it was. And it suits him.  

5. There is a price of course for unconditional love: picking up feces. If I thought children was a humbling experience, it’s nothing compared to a dog. Oh I laughed at that Seinfeld bit, but now I appreciate it.

6. Having a dog is like joining a secret club. Suddenly I know every dog owner in the neighbourhood. We stop, we chat, our dogs sniff each others’ bottoms. And then we’re off. Instant friends.

7. But it also applies to many non-dog owners. There’s a woman who works next to the building where I drop off and pick-up my kids before and after school. I never spoke to her nor she to me. Not even eye contact. One day, I turned up with the dog to pick the kids. She started a conversation.

8. But regarding point 7, it only applies when you have the dog. I’ve had dog owners to whom I’ve spoken, ignore me when the dog wasn’t there. Membership revoked!

9. But maybe that’s not always a bad thing, because dog owners, like parents are somewhat crazy. When the dog runs up to me off-leash, the owner unfailingly calls out, “don’t worry, he’s friendly.” The fact that everyone says it doesn’t thrill me: after all, who would yell out, “Don’t move or he’ll rip you apart” ? At the pet shop where I buy supplies, I see dogs with vinyl booties, ridiculous bows and unflattering sweater vests (sometimes on the same dog). It seems to rob a dog of its dignity, and this is done by loving owners who all imagine their pet can speak English.

10. And with all that, I have to say, that as with my children, I was completed stunned by how quickly Lester stole my heart.


1 Comment

  1. Goodbye 2011 « Notes from Underground said,

    […] readers will remember I got a dog in June. A friend of mine told me it’s like having a toddler for 15 years. Not entirely […]

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