A Dog’s Life: Lessons Learned from Our Canine Companions
As many of you know, I love my dog, Archer. We rescued him from the East Coast Canine Alliance dog rescue out of NC when he was only 8 weeks old — around Christmas of 2012. He was the puppy that was gentle, yet playful, and full of love. He was black and white, with big paws and tons of cute, little wrinkles.
Many that meet Archer say they have never met a dog quite like him, which makes a dog mama proud. He loves kids, is gentle, has a big personality, and is very trustworthy. He enjoys simple pleasures in life, like walks after work, throwing a tennis ball till he is too tired to fetch anymore, laying in his pool on hot days, and sleeping on his back, spread eagle. Don’t we all wish life could be this simple? Don’t we look at our dogs and wish sometimes we had their life?
I often hear the phrases “man, the life of a dog” or “that’s a dog’s life.” We, as dog owners, realize how lucky they are, and realize how we take simple pleasures for granted sometimes. All it takes is seeing a little, simple excitement from them.
I know on multiple occasions I’ve said, “Wow, sometimes life would be easier if it was like a dog’s.” They have no worries, really, except, “Oops, I got my tennis ball stuck under the couch and I can’t get it….”
Life moves quickly and can be so darn stressful with work, family, bills, and finances. Sometimes, looking in your dog’s eyes when you get home makes all that go away. I know it does for me. A bad day at work can go away in an instant when Archer greets me at the door with a wagging tail and kiss.
We embrace our dog’s companionship, love, and kindness, because sometimes they are the only ones that can make us feel better when we are sad, angry, or feeling lonely. They keep us company all the time, even when we don’t need company. They embrace our friends and family, who may treat them differently than we do, and accept changes at times.
Dog’s lives should be spent with love, kindness, and playfulness. I believe in my heart a dog knows when you have rescued them and will wholeheartedly be grateful to you for the rest of their life for that. We all want “a dog’s life” because we create it for them and wish we could have it for ourselves.
As humans we tack on a lot of responsibilities. We want to have the lazy life sometimes, the carefree life, and the life where we don’t care what anyone thinks of us. If we were to go roll in the mud and then in the grass, no one would judge us for how we look. Life can get crazy, tough, lonely, and stressful, and having a dog companion makes it all a little easier to get through.
One way I like to thank Archer for all the unconditional love is by making him homemade dog treats. For two easy, healthy recipes your dog will love, try making my Peanut Butter Dog Treats (featured on my blog at Parade Magazine) or my tummy-soothing Pumpkin Dog Treats. Let me know how they like them!
Photo Credits: Dragon Photo Studio (lead photo collage), Nisa Burns Cochran (middle photo collage, dog treats)