I’m not sure if you’ll agree, but I’m pretty sure you dog would; the world is too full of blah, blah, blah. If you choose, as I do, to take quiet walks with your dog as often as you can, your dog will know exactly how you are feeling without you saying a word. And if she’s like my dog, she will look back to check on you, on or off leash, without being asked.
The nice thing about quiet time is that while you enjoy your own thoughts, she will enjoy her own. You may both admire the same thing once in a while, but, more than likely, your dog will admire the scents around her and you will admire the sights. A peaceful walk, with little said, is refreshing to both mind and body, but even though your dog may be lost in the wonders around her, she won’t mind the occasional interruption of a word or two or three here and there. Go left. Wait for me. Or even, Sit in front of that chair with your legs spread this far apart while I take your picture. Who says dog’s aren’t eager to please!
Hey, I’m writing a blog, Hands off. I know I’m irresistible, but try to use a little self control anyway. There are writers languishing by the side of the road, no publisher, no income, no ideas. Why not adopt one of those? Why not have a writer of your own instead of interfering with one trying to be productive, useful, creative, one who needs to concentrate on what she’s doing?
Now the hard part. While no one really wants to pet me when I’m working, people do want to and try to pet working dogs. Dogs are not multi-taskers. It’s one thing at a time and that one thing gets every ounce of their attention. Try eating in front of your dog if you don’t believe me! So when someone pets a service dog while that dog is on the job, or offers a hand for the dog to sniff, or starts a conversation with said dog, all the dog’s attention will go to that stranger. In fact, depending upon what kind of service dog it is, the dog may even dowse to see what you’ve got that needs her attention. When this happens several, even many, times a day, the dog gets tired. The dog gets confused. Do the rules not count today? Am I supposed to take care of that person? Can I please have a nap?
Dogs crave work and a dog with a working life is a happy dog, but like the writer who gets pestered while she’s writing, a little interruption can be a terrible thing. It can even end work for the day if not longer.
There are so many dogs in need of homes. If you want a dog, if you love dogs, if you need a dog, please adopt. And even if you can’t, there are lots of friendly pet dogs whose owners would be happy to have you meet and greet them. So do that, please, and let working dogs do their jobs unimpeded.
I’m just sayin’.
Imagine how our ancestors felt when the first friendly wolf dared to come close, perhaps figuring that it was safer to take a handout than to chase down a large prey animal who might fight back. Imagine the first time that friendly wolf crept near the fire or onto one of the animal skins, right up against a person, keeping both of them warm as the fire burned down. How many generations did it take for the wolf to become the dog, to become so woven into the lives of humans that it is impossible to imagine life without them? How long was it before the humans noticed that the dogs would stay close to them when they were sick, would make them laugh when things were rough, would keep an eye on the youngsters, the human ones as well as their own, and could understand the words that were uttered at them, could understand and do what they were asked to do?
We no longer live in caves, and some of us have stopped throwing stones when we are angry or dragging our loved ones along by their hair. But the dog is still with us, nestled at the foot of the bed, hanging around the kitchen waiting for a treat, leading the way on walks, making us laugh when we are blue. The dog is still there, hoping to do something useful – gather the laundry, protect the house, play with the kids, tend to the sick. The dog is still there and amen to that.