4 Things I Learned From My Dog This Weekend
I hope everyone had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend! Mine was spent not doing much of anything – and actually I think I spent more time overall sitting in my bike saddle then I did in my home, which I suppose is OK in the long run. A BBQ didn’t happen, but a picnic and hike were somehow included, which were great, and as it turns out these events were a great source of education for me thanks in no small part to my ridiculously furry partner in crime. Having had a dog for over a year, it certainly makes me appreciate how fun and awesome they are. I truly am the highlight of her day, which is slightly ironic seeing how tired I am when I get home, but it’s a riot coming through the door only to head off for adventures involving prolific tennis balls and toilsome hunts for poultry. Oh, the life of an indoor dog…
My dog must be a patient creature (read: person) for her to lounge in her cage all day, anxiously awaiting the creaking door handle that signifies that freedom is nearly within her grasp. I often find myself musing about her daily routine, because frankly, I’m not around for 80% of it!
What does she contemplate while confined behind those steel bars of trapping? Does she process the weekend? Analyze what item on my Netflix queue would best be served to watch that evening? Debate who shot first, Han or Greedo? Or does she simply think about the next bowl of dry food to get her through the day? For any dog owners out there, you know how crazy and almost human like dogs can be, and it’s a fascinating phenomenon to watch. They know when you’re pissed off or super happy, are always more than willing to eat your leftovers, but at the same time they are tickled to death to share the foot of your bed or even keep your feet warm as you doze off into a sorely needed power nap.
Man’s best friend is loyal to a T, full of vibrancy and excessive amounts of energy, and always willing and waiting to accompany you to the ends of the Earth, assuming adequate treats are provided along the way. For those traits, I am eternally grateful, especially as I watched my loyal companion peruse the surrounding desert landscape with all the tact and tenderness of a raging rhinoceros. Lizards, steep cliffs, and dry conditions were no match for the 35 pound Beast of Exploration! And it was during our little trek that it was revealed to me how much dogs know and how much we should learn from them.
Instinct – Dogs know what they know and they sure as heck know what they don’t know. For some reason, they are just wired with sharper senses, a keen ability for understanding their surroundings, and a care free attitude that lets them run with the wind without fear of bills, getting groceries, or going to work. They trust their instincts to get them through, whether it’s dealing with the first sign of danger or dashing after a rapidly moving object, and we should take a page from their book and trust our instincts too. Granted, we don’t always have the best radar, but for me at least, far more often than not my instincts ring true.
Fearless – The only thing we have to fear is fear itself, and my dog is either too smart or too dumb to fear anything. Oh look, that rattlesnake looks cute, let’s have a sniff. Or, I wonder how close to the edge of the cliff I can come before falling in. Better yet, and my favorite, how fast can I try running under the spikey, barbed fence without lopping off my head in chase of fresh rabbit stew?
Forgive – I admit it, this lesson was not one I am thrilled about learning. However, it is a lesson that is still important. Besides bathing, having her nails clipped is my dog’s absolutely most hated activity and so we experience that wondrous occasion as little as possible. Turns out, I sliced off way too much of her nail resulting in a rather bloody mess. I’m not sure who was more surprised – the dog, flesh wounded and confused, or the owner, shocked and panicky.
Take a Nap – I swear, the only thing my dog does better than wreak havoc out in the untamed wilderness is sleep more often than I do. She has no qualms with passing out on the sun-warmed carpet or collapsing onto the corner of my bed while I fold laundry. She simply does what is needed to sustain those crazy high energy levels. I fully appreciate the value of a great power nap and fully plan to embrace that several more times this week after work.
Dogs are our best friend and not only that, but they are far smarter and more astute than we give them credit for. For me, I’m glad I got some great bonding time with mine over the weekend. Now, if only she could bike the 160 miles that I did and we would have a truly great relationship. Happy Wednesday!