What’s harder, dogs or kids? Now don’t get all torch and pitchfork on me, I’m not comparing child rearing and puppy parenting as equals, obviously birthing a child and rearing it from infancy until, well, forever is not in the same ballpark as adopting a little fur ball and naming her Fluffy. But society is changing as more couples opt for career over family and dual incomes are needed to support a desirable modern lifestyle. Thus the family dog has risen in stature to pseudo child for many the modern individual.
Doggy daycare, puppy spas, and pet hotels are popping up all over the place and let me tell you, they aren’t some overpriced gimmick designed to drawn in the rich and famous. Chesney now attends a doggy daycare (which he LOVES) twice a week where he gets to play all day, work on his manners, and have some oh-so-important socialization time with his peers. Sound familiar? There’s a screening process to be accepted, trial period, and dogs to daycare attendant ratio to abide by. Our pup has an emergency contact and “approved pickup person” list. This is not uncommon. In fact, the days of Fido sitting patiently by the door awaiting his owner’s return are waning.
There are classes available for all types of dogs and their many quirks including puppy preschool, courageous canines, manic manners, life skills, and, for the more athletic hound, agility, dance (I’m so not making this up), and a myriad of other outdoor sports. Your dog can carry or be carried in his very own backpack, ride in a car seat (Chesney totally has one, don’t judge me he loves it), go boating safely in a doggy-approved life vest, enjoy a windy car ride while wearing his sunglasses (I swear I’m not making this up…I saw it. I promise), and climb his own little staircase to your bed to sleep. The amount of gear one tiny 7 lbs. dog accumulates would shock and amaze (or maybe appall) you, and I’m not even as bad as I could be.
Ever looked at your Facebook feed and be inundated with images of your friend’s new puppy? Fluffy’s first car ride, her first day at the vet, her first puppy class, her first play-date…there seems to be an endless stream of puppy parenthood pride that comes from rearing a little biting barking ball of fury into a respectable doggy citizen and valued family member. Do you have that super annoying friend who incessantly refers to herself as “mommy” and her precious hound as her “baby”? What?! That annoying friend is me?! I can’t even argue. But I’m not alone! Our pets have become an extension of ourselves in a way, as we include them in our daily lives and ooo and ahhh over their triumphs. We as a group have begun to go beyond the simplistic owner/pet relationship and are driving a deeper meaning into what it truly means to be “man’s best friend”.
That’s it for my philosophical musings today puppy peeps! Check back soon for more pup-dates. Coming soon, Chesney reviews some canine products!!