It took me three years to convince my husband that we should get a dog. I knew they take a lot of patients and practice. My family went through a dozen dogs growing up, none of them ever even made it to being house broken, so I was nervous about it, but when the time was right (last Valentines) we adopted Snoop from a local shelter.
When new moms at work or church talk about little things and experiences with their new baby I can’t help but chime in with “Yea, I know! With my puppy…” And I usually get the same strange look in response. I don’t mean to compare my love for my dog with their love for their child because believe me… I know there’s a difference. But in my eyes, there are a lot of similarities.
I did come across a blog a week or so ago (the name slips my mind, if it was you let me know and I’ll insert link here) about a woman who said she couldn’t believe how some people have dogs instead of children. She had a cute picture of the comparison between a dog and her cute baby. Her baby was way cuter than the dog pictured but that’s not always the case.Take this for example:
I thought my husband and I would be good candidates for having a cute baby but ever since trying the computerized analalysis and seeing we have a possibility of our baby looking like this:And I’ve changed my mind. Umm, totally white? Lopsided cheeks? If that’s the case I do think my dog here:is cuter. I love Snoop, but he’s not my replacement child. He will always have a special place in my heart, even after human spawn.
However, I have been thinking lately of how my dog is great practice for a child. Here are a few things I’ve thought of:
1. Building maternal instincts: When he wakes up in the middle of the night I jump up… It’s become an instinct. He usually has to either go outside to go potty, or rush outside to puke (after sneaking some snaks).
2. Getting mom smart: I’ve learned to learn. I’ve been reading a lot of “parenting” books about raising a dog, how to be a “pack leader” and really trying to follow through.
3. Mommy talk good and bad: It’s easy to let your children walk all over you. Same with my dog. Even I have a hard time holding my ground when he gives me his sad puppy eyes, and he knows when I mean business. I turn on my “serious mom” voice and he obeys. I also have my cute googoo mommy voice for when he’s being all cute and cuddly. Oh, and I’m beginning to use mom phrases like: “Yea I can see you, I have eyes in the back of my head.”
4. Selflessness: I know a lot of you may be chuckling at this right now but really… Baby steps ok? I use to hate to exercise but since getting Snoop and learning daily walks are crutial I’ve sacrificed sleep for his fitness.
5. Poop? Who cares?!: I’m use to gross things. Puke, poop, diarreah. I’m acustomed to it all now. And I don’t know for sure but I’m guessing human stuff isn’t as gross, and I know dog farts smell WAY worse.
6. Teaching skills: Just like I want to teach my kids… My dog knows good manners. No jumping on people, sitting before he’s pet, that kind of stuff.
7. Homemaking: I learned how to sew just so I cold make him dog collars and matching leashes. This is kind of in the spoiling category but I think I’ll be one of those people who wants to dress my baby in something different EVERY time we’re out. I imagine that because I refuse to let my dog wear the same collar to Petsmart twice in a row… Usually he won’t wear a duplicate for at least a month, and his collar and leash HAVE to match. And sometimes I’ll wear a bandanna that matches his.
8. Healthcare: I take him to the veternarian regularly and stay very in-tune with his health needs.
9. Selective listening: I read a lot of blogs about women who lock themselves in the room away from their kids while the blog… Yea, I do that with my dog.
10. Patients: Lots of carpet shampoo, ripped jeans, chewed up shoes, 5 new sets of blinds, 2 training classes, lots of practice and a bark collar later, I’ve learned a lot of patients, and boy if you stick with it it pays off!
Sure, you can’t throw a kid in the backyard all day, or leave them at home alone, but if you ask me, it’s still good practice, and baby steps in the right direction.
I'm a former journalist, and lifelong creator striving to make the world a better place. This is the space where I share my journey in making the most of every day by cherishing our individuality and celebrating our differences.
I'm a part-time journalist, full-time wife and mother striving to make the world a better place and inspiring others to do the same. This is the space where I share my journey in making the most of every day.