Saturday, March 19, 2016

Things That Having a Dog Has Taught Me

For the longest time when I was younger, I wanted a dog. I got all kinds of dog stuffed animals and dog games to try and compensate for the fact that I didn't have a dog. My parents didn't want to get one because my mom didn't like the dog fur and my sister and I were a little young to take care of a dog. But about 6 years ago, we got a dog. The dog that we got was a Cocker Spaniel and a King Charles Cavalier mix. We named her cookie. Yes, we named her after a food, but what can I say, I like food. Throughout the years, I realized that there are a lot of lessons that having a dog has taught me and a lot of things that have changed as a result of a new addition to the family.


Summer 2014

You're never alone.

When I'm at home alone, it's normal to sometimes feel lonely. However, with a dog, you don't have to be lonely. It's true, a dog is an man's best friend because they're always by your side. That's why I'm a dog person and not a cat person. Don't get me wrong, cats are great, but the reasons that I prefer dogs are because they have a sense of companionship. Whenever I walk around, Cookie is happy to just follow me wherever I go with great interest. 

It takes responsibility.

Having an actual dog is very different from having a little stuffed animal. The thing is, that I sometimes forget that Cookie is a living and breathing animal. She needs to be cared for, like how we would with humans, specifically small children. There's feeding, there's walks, baths, vet visits, and more. I see why my parents were reluctant to get a dog in the first place, because having a dog is actually a lot of responsibility. I have to come home early to take her out to the bathroom and feed her and going on trips can sometimes be a hassle, because we have to find a place for her to stay while we're gone. It's a lot of responsibility and is definitely a bit pricey at times, but it's worth it in the end.

Not every dog is the same.

Obviously, I knew this before, but it never occurred to me how different each dog might be. Dogs are like people, there's a wide range of personalities. Cookie is energetic and absolutely crazy at times, my friends can vouch, she jumps up on people constantly and goes mad whenever there are people around. However, when at home, she's calm and collected and naps most of the time. The strangest thing about her personality is her classiness. She only eats the best food and refuses to eat anything low quality (I honestly don't know how she learned how to distinct between quality food and cheap food) and never steps in mud or puddles because she doesn't want to get her paws dirty. Every dog has a different personality. While some dogs may look similar because of their breeds, each dog is special and unique. 


Look forward with positivity.

As aforementioned, Cookie is energetic about all kinds of things. From meeting a new person to getting some extra table scraps, she looks at things in a positive light. She loves every person that steps into the room and looks at things with a positive light. Every day is a new day to do something incredible. Whenever we go somewhere new, she is excited about it even though she has no idea where we're going. In the same way, we can learn from that. Even though I may have no idea where I'm going in life, I should look forward on the unexpected with excitement. 

February 2014

Try not to be so judgmental.

I'll admit it. I'm a little of a hypocrite. I don't like being judged, but I still tend to judge people off of little things. However, Cookie doesn't do that. She welcomes everyone with open arms and joy instead of judging them. Instead of judging people based on their physical appearance and impression, I should be more accepting and welcoming. 


Enjoy nature.

I'm an indoor person. I like to stay inside and huddle in my bed. However, I need to start enjoying nature more. When I go on walks with Cookie, sometimes I try and rush it and get it over with as soon as possible so that I can either come back home and get some work done or just relax with Netflix and some food. But I need to start stopping and smelling the roses and really embracing the beauty that nature has to offer. Cookie always enjoys going out on a walk and tries to check out everything that she can. I need to start doing something more like that and really enjoying what nature has to offer. 

Smile.

Sometimes Cookie looks happy for no reason and I'm confused on why she is suddenly so happy. While it may seem strange in the moment, it's nice to be happy. I find that sometimes the best way to become happy is to just smile more. 

Do you have a dog or another pet? What lessons has she or he taught you? 

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