A Dog’s Life

28 Mar

Chillin' like a villian
Credit: My mad photo skills

A woman I work with recently went on a trip, and asked me if I could watch her dog while she was gone. The dog comes to the office with her so it wasn’t a total stretch to ask me to dog sit for a few days. Still, you have to seriously question anyone who feels comfortable leaving their pet, child or elderly relative in my care.

We had a great time while she stayed with us. We did all of the typical things I expected: we went for walks,  did doodie duty, fed her, and let her wake us up at an ungodly hour on the weekend. What I didn’t expect was that her brief stay with us would be peppered with wisdom only a dog could dispense.

Don’t hold grudges.

During the time the dog was with us I scolded her for barking at our neighbors, and for her attempt at earning her Peeping Tom certification when she snuck up on me while I was showering. I was amazed at how she always quickly forgave my harsh, dictator ways. If I wanted to go for a walk, she was ready and willing. If I called her name for some belly rubbing, she came to me without hesitation. Dogs don’t freeze you out for periods of time because they don’t see the point of it. They won’t let a little disagreement come between them and future games of fetch.

Always be excited to see the ones you love.

I’m not kidding when I say this dog was more excited to see me after five minutes of separation than some of my friends are after not seeing me for five months. The look on her face when I’d leave and come back always said, “OHMIGODOHMIGODOHMIGODOHMIGOD!” When someone leaves us we’re never guaranteed to see them again, and dogs don’t forget that the way people do.

If you don’t like someone, you don’t have to pretend to.

Growing up we’re taught to smile in a person’s face even though we intend to plot their demise the moment they leave the room. Dogs don’t understand this concept, and will let you know (in the form of barking, growling, or humping your leg at the most inopportune times) that they hate your face. I’d love it if someone who didn’t care for me would just boldly say, “Jen, you suck. Not just a little, but large, sweaty donkey ball suckage.” You always know if a dog loathes you because they make it clear that they’d gnaw on your jugular if given the opportunity.

Relax a little.

Pets don’t have full-time jobs, they don’t have bills to pay, and they don’t have the stress of family/friend/relationship drama. This means they don’t have anything getting in the way of serious relaxation. They know the value of a good nap in the sun, or stopping and smelling the roses. I’m convinced that if they had the ability, they’d light a cigar and have a scotch the moment they got home.

Don’t worry about what you look like.

Being a dog is kind of tough because you get very little privacy in all of life’s most precious moments: going to the bathroom, taking a bath, or licking of the private parts. Most of us are too afraid to dance in front of strangers, or laugh uproariously in a restaurant for fear of what others might think. Dogs realize life is too short to be bashful, and will plunge their noses in other dogs’ butts even if there are onlookers.

Parting is such sweet sorry. After I dropped her off, I felt a little emptiness inside. Memories of our time together flooded over me: her furry little face in the morning, her horrible doggie breath after taking a nap, and the way she would jump from the back of the car to the front so quickly that I’d nearly drive off the road. Still, I knew I had to give her back. Not only is she someone else’s lifelong companion, but I could have sworn I saw her eyeing my jugular.

49 Responses to “A Dog’s Life”

  1. clownonfire 03/28/2012 at 9:15 am #

    My post for tomorrow was about how you hadn’t written anything in a few weeks.
    Fuck you, Jen. Even if this is a great post.
    Le Clown

    • Jen and Tonic 03/28/2012 at 10:00 am #

      Ah, you’ve been foiled by J&T! Now what will you write about? Perhaps how your internet buddies are trying to screw you out of post material?

      • clownonfire 03/28/2012 at 10:06 am #

        I’ll write about you alright…
        Le Clown

        • Jen and Tonic 03/28/2012 at 11:17 am #

          I look forward to you dropping the phrase “devastatingly beautiful and charming” in there.

  2. cher 03/28/2012 at 11:54 am #

    Let me help you out here, Jen. Yes, you are devastatingly beautiful and charming! But I do dislike you for looking so great in your Expats t-shirt. :)

    There is no love like the unconditional love of your dog. If I am tired, she sleeps cuddled next to me, even if she had to drop her toy in the middle of a play. She pees outside and I don’t need to worry whether the seat is up or down in the middle of the night. The only things I have to hide from her are my bras. If she finds one next to the bed in the morning, she runs around the house flapping it from one side to the other. And that…gives me yet another excuse to order a new one from Vickie’s Secret. We just let that charge run up so the dog is not deprived. It’s a win-win!

    • Jen and Tonic 03/28/2012 at 6:59 pm #

      The thought of your dog running around with your delicates made me laugh. I had a friend whose dog once pulled her, ahem, “personal massager” out during a dinner party and started prancing around with it.

  3. Main Street Musings Blog 03/28/2012 at 2:06 pm #

    Lucky dog!

    • Jen and Tonic 03/28/2012 at 7:00 pm #

      I know! Look at how relaxed she is. I now sprawl on the floor like that.

  4. Viciously Sweet 03/28/2012 at 4:24 pm #

    This post had some of the best advice I’ve read in a while!
    Like seriously next time I see my friends I’m going to shake my booty with excitement!

    • Jen and Tonic 03/28/2012 at 7:01 pm #

      Shake your booty and profess your love of Fido’s wisdom!

  5. sweetmother 03/28/2012 at 11:26 pm #

    This is Feckin awesome…

    • Jen and Tonic 03/29/2012 at 8:25 am #

      A stamp of approval from Sweet Mother gives me the same feeling I get when I come home from work and change into my super elastic waist pants. It just makes life better.

  6. Jen 03/29/2012 at 1:14 am #

    Love this!! You were born to be a dog owner!!! I’m not sure about a scotch and a cigar but I did get home one day to find my puppy had located my contraceptive pills and decided eating a month at once would be a great way to relax. Um….he’s never reproduced. :)

    • Jen and Tonic 03/29/2012 at 8:26 am #

      Did your dog go through horrible emotional mood swings? I swear when I started taking The Pill that I was crying at everything…even car insurance commercials. “Oh god, she’s just so protected now that she’s with All State!” *Bawl*

      • Jen 03/29/2012 at 2:57 pm #

        LOL…no. But he’s a King Charles Cavaleir so he’s generally forlorn looking with big droopy eyes. So I probably wouldn’t have really noticed.
        I cry at commercials all the time regardless. Anything with heartfelt music or slow motion smiling usually does it. :)

  7. TJLubrano 03/29/2012 at 3:34 am #

    This is such a wonderful post Jen! Just like I said…”nuggets of wisdom” :) I always wanted a dog when I was younger, but my mom was (well is) afraid of them. However, not sure if I would get one now though.

    “OHMIGODOHMIGODOMHMIGOD!” That is exactly how I’d describe their excitement hahaha!

    I do think dogs have their own interesting parties when we are not looking.

  8. countsneakysjournal 03/29/2012 at 2:36 pm #

    As a couple owned by a Beagle, Helen and I are acutely aware of the qualities of dogs to enrich our lives. Funny post! My best.

    • Jen and Tonic 03/29/2012 at 7:35 pm #

      Oh man! Does your dog knows how to relax since it’s technically Head of Household?

      • countsneakysjournal 03/31/2012 at 6:53 pm #

        No, and I think the pressure of being “Head of Household”
        is getting to her. Yesterday, while filling out our 2011 taxes, she
        went out and started eating grass. Her only relaxation comes once a month at poolside at the Flying Flea Kennel where we take her for a weekend.

  9. Aurora, HSP 03/29/2012 at 8:50 pm #

    LOVE this, going to reblog, so gooooodddd!!!!!!

    • Jen and Tonic 03/29/2012 at 8:52 pm #

      I’m really glad you liked it! And thank you so much for the reblog :)

  10. Aurora, HSP 03/29/2012 at 8:50 pm #

    Reblogged this on AURORA MOREALIST ©2011 ~ Writer and commented:
    Everyone should read this one!

  11. Ben Naga 03/30/2012 at 2:58 am #

    Excellent post, Jen. I have passed it on to a few folk.

    • Jen and Tonic 03/31/2012 at 7:03 pm #

      Ah, thanks so much Ben! I appreciate you stopping by!

  12. Just Rambling 03/30/2012 at 4:17 am #

    What?! Seriously? Great post! Doggies for president! Okay, maybe not… but how sweet is it that you can yell at a dog if it pees on your carpet and then know it’ll bend its neck and then start licking you. How cute! The peeing isn’t cute though. It really isn’t. Nothing cute about pee.

    • Jen and Tonic 03/31/2012 at 7:04 pm #

      Thumbs down to the peeing, but a huge thumbs up to the little doggie kisses. It’s the same thing with babies. If babies weren’t so cute people may not be so willing to do all the hard work to raise them.

  13. Paul Chapman 03/30/2012 at 4:18 am #

    I think this has to be my favourite piece of writing by you Jen. It raises some seriously awesome questions about life and human interaction. Wouldn’t it just be great if for just one day, we could abandon all cares and worries, and just be?
    Thanks for such a great post :) Hope you have a great weekend- and big congrats again. \m/ \m/

    • Jen and Tonic 03/31/2012 at 7:06 pm #

      It would be GREAT if we could abandon all cares and worries. I’ve tried many times to do this, but those stupid little thoughts always creep up.

      Keep on rockin’!! \m/ \m/

  14. Bill Friday 03/31/2012 at 5:10 pm #

    Having only, always been a “dog person”, I’ve understood for years what you went through in mere days. Unconditional acceptance really ruins a person, you know. Now maybe you could write something from the other side of the ledger…? Maybe something with cats… and brooms…?

    • Jen and Tonic 03/31/2012 at 7:07 pm #

      Hmmm….interesting concept. Does anyone really want to read about how I chase the neighborhood cats with brooms when they’re trying to make sexy times outside my window?

  15. Jennifer Worrell 04/01/2012 at 2:10 pm #

    Love this post..I do notice though that my dogs will only eat my Vicki See undies and leave the nasty Wally World drawers alone. Wtf? Guess they have expensive taste…

    • Jen and Tonic 04/01/2012 at 3:13 pm #

      I’m beginning to see a pattern here with dogs only wanting the expensive stuff. I guess if an animal who likes to lick its own private parts won’t touch our funky, old undies it’s time to throw them out.

  16. John the Aussie 04/01/2012 at 8:54 pm #

    You are nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award. Congratulations
    http://sleepinginsomniacs.wordpress.com/2012/04/02/dumb-workers-receive-the-versatile-blogger-award

  17. deanjbaker 04/02/2012 at 6:01 pm #

    enjoyed it all

  18. Janene 04/04/2012 at 8:03 am #

    Great advice, Jen. I plan on telling everyone I don’t like how I feel about them now. Bring on the hate! :) Seriously, some great thoughts.

    • Jen and Tonic 04/04/2012 at 7:35 pm #

      You can start with me. I’m sure you’ve got a few choice words ;)

  19. kelsgonebush 04/07/2012 at 2:18 am #

    Love it ! Dogs are the most awesome friends to have ;) Unlike cats who are sooo moody !

    You have probably already seen it but if not the link below is hilarious and so true ;)

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150726951573281&set=a.451904098280.242076.514558280&type=1&ref=nf

    • Jen and Tonic 04/09/2012 at 10:59 pm #

      Cats ARE totally moody, but I kind of like that they’re jerks. I think having a dog and cat is ideal because then you get the opposite extremes.

      I hadn’t seen that before, but it’s hilarious!!

    • acflory 05/13/2012 at 4:07 pm #

      lmao – laughed like crazy and upset the cat sitting on my lap ;) The pooch looked up in alarm too. Thanks for the link :)

      • Jen and Tonic 05/22/2012 at 9:26 pm #

        Jen and Tonic: Scaring pets since 2012

        • acflory 05/22/2012 at 10:26 pm #

          If you ever run out just give me a yell – I’ve got lots of them ;)

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