Our dearest companions are much cleverer than we human parents give them credit for. Their thinking is simpler and has more clarity. And there is a key word missing from their language and thought.
It is a word that challenges a given reality…and it is…Why?
When we are in a situation, we do our best to cope with whatever comes at us. But then we will ask…why? Why me? Why did it happen? Who is to blame? Why, why, why…
Dogs do not do this. Not because of a lack of intelligence or curiosity. It is just that they live in the moment and don’t examine the past in minute detail. Their existence is based on NOW.
And their memory will guide them to avoid making mistakes that can cause them pain or distress or goes against training.
I have a neighbor who leaves her dog home alone all day. When challenged about the unkindness of this – she retorts “well, he’s lucky…he could still be at the rescue centre”. And I think, “hmmm, I’m pretty sure that isn’t making Cornelius (her sweet shitzu) feel better about being abandoned when he’s crying his heart out”….
Unlike us and the fact they don’t ask “why me?”, means dogs do not become bitter. They can become damaged and so reactive, by bad experiences or lack of nurturing. They can become sad and depressed.
It is huge that the law in the UK is being changed to recognize that animals are ‘sentient beings’ – able to perceive or feel things. All loving pet owners already know this and I’ve written before to demonstrate how animals in my care have shown me their feelings, when a companion has returned back to their homes.
What dogs are though – is reactive. As we are too. Stub a toe and the instinctive reaction to the pain is to hit out. And that’s just what a dog often does. Unless it’s starved and beaten into submission…
Dear reader, let us continue to celebrate our wonderful companions and one of the best ways to do this is to understand them and do our best to walk their walk….