Posted tagged ‘boundaries’

A really good reason to have a dog

September 16, 2010
Gonzo is stretching beside Cindy. Having pets is a wonderful way to bond with children. Pets and families go together. Good parenting means spending time with children and animals and slowing down to their time.

Gonzo decided to stretch beside Cindy.

The only reason I’m a dog owner is because my children wanted a dog.

What would you say when your daughter, 14, calls you at work, where you’re working under a regular weekly deadline as the editor of a newspaper. Your second dog has just died after nine years with the family — if only she could have hung on three more years.

Your daughter’s three older siblings have left home. Your daughter is home along after school. Your daughter asks in a very small voice, (very unlike other voices she uses with her mother), softly, with vulnerability, like she’s 7 years old again, “Dad says if you say “yes” we can get another dog.”

If you’re a good mother and not a dog lover, just a dog tolerator, what’s your answer?

Gonzo came to live with us eight years ago. The daughter left home four years ago. So you know who takes care of the dog. Dad! I’m her stepmother. I do what looks good and feels good and what I feel like doing because she belongs to dad and daughter.

One really good reason to have a dog is because of the cute, funny and stupid things they do. Even when my children were spitting mad at me, I could always change the atmosphere by saying, “Do you know what Boomer/Sophie/Gonzo did today?”

Even now that they’ve moved out and onto a better place, my “children” love to hear what Gonzo did today.

When Cindy started stretching, Gonzo plunked herself right between Cindy’s legs. Gonzo and Cindy adore each other. Cindy — my excellent friend and massage therapist — even gave Gonzo a massage.

Even dogs like a good massage. Gonzo is not my best friend, but my children ADORED dogs and bonded with our three family dogs. Dogs go along with having a family. Children can do plenty of chores connected to dogs.

Gonzo gets an expert massage. Cindy is really good at finding tight muscles on mammals and kneading out the tension.


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