by AVI VINCE
Fear not. This is not a post on how I treat my dogs like children or what I dress my dogs in (I leave that to Paris Hilton) or how I carry my dogs everywhere in an oversized bag (again Paris Hilton) or that I think having dogs is exactly like having children.
I am fully aware that having children is far more hard work than having dogs. Dogs at least don’t talk, can walk from the minute they are born and don’t try to kill themselves by flinging themselves down the stairs when you are running after the other dog.
However, anyone who has dogs knows that there are a few similarities.
You still have to toilet train dogs – it is just that you don’t order your child to go outside to do their business. And prior to them learning where the appropriate place to do their business is, you have to wipe up their number ones, number twos and number threes (don’t ask).
You still need to prepare all their meals and drinks for them. They just don’t get it in a lunch tin and they don’t get a juice box. As a dog parent, you still need to make sure you are home to give them their daily meals. Just like small children, they can’t feed themselves. But unlike children, no matter how old they get, they still can never feed themselves. Actually, I take that back…some kids never learn to feed themselves.
Just like kids, you need to teach them manners. For example, to not bark while you are on the phone, to not “accidentally” forget where to do their business, to not beg for treats and to not destroy the house while you do your number ones. Almost the same, just for dogs we call these tricks. If we went around boasting that we have taught our kids tricks, we might not get very favourable looks.
You get the point, looking after a dog is similar (not exactly the same) as looking after a child. At least when the dog has nightmares, you never get woken up and asked to sleep in their kennel to ensure the monster doesn’t get them.
I think some people forget that caring for a dog is like caring for anyone else. When I am asked to go on a work trip, I feel foolish for saying that I just need to see if it would work because of my dogs. (I have two adorable beagles.) I feel that people think I am like Paris Hilton and concerned about my dog not having someone to change their tutu the following day. However, I don’t feel this is the image on anyone’s mind when it is a parent saying that they need to see if they can make arrangements for their children while on the work trip.