Man’s Best Friend


  • Author Robert Gold
  • Published April 18, 2012
  • Word count 534

There’s a lot to be said for the loyalty and companionship of dogs. Even if you live with a loving family, it’s possible that nobody is as excited for you to walk through the door after a hard day’s work as your faithful pooch. You also may have noticed that when you’re sick or having a bad day, nobody goes out of their way to keep you company like a dog. This is because dogs are very good at picking up on body language cues and adapting their behavior to them; while scientifically speaking they may not "know" you’re sick, they certainly know that something is off. It’s easy to forget all this however because they are so faithful. Dogs are kind of underappreciated for the amount of affection they give; if you live by yourself, you come home to your dog and he or she is happy to see you and gives you all the love you can handle, despite the fact that you’re going to leave him for eight hours, again, tomorrow.

So what’s to be done? Does anything have to be? I mean, after all, it’s just a dog. Puppy Services will not be showing up just because you left your dog home alone all day with nobody to play with. That being said, this is less of a practical matter and more one of simple ethics. For all a dog does for you from keeping you company when you’re sick, to statistically lowering your blood pressure, doesn’t he or she deserve a little bit of a kickback? Yes, I know you feed them, pet them, and maybe let them up on the sofa if your significant other isn’t around, but does this really make up for the fact that they’re alone for fully half of the time when you’re not asleep? Luckily, there are alternatives; dog daycare is taking up a big spot in industry as people begin to respect their faithful companions. Not only do dogs get to interact with other dogs (something extremely important to dog psychology that might not happen very often depending on how busy you are) they get a human to cater to their needs. Even if you have more than one dog and you think: "Oh, they’ll just entertain each other," there’s still the question of what would happen if one of the dogs got dangerously sick while you were at work. Could the other dog drive him to the vet? Putting your dog in another human’s hands while you’re at work is really the only humane option; remember, though dogs may have been domesticated a long way since then, their ancestors are wolves, pack animals that rely on each other. Even if it is no longer for the purpose of hunting, their communal needs are often not met sitting at home alone.

Dog daycare is a burgeoning market as people come to see their pets as codependent creatures rather than mere possessions. Caring for a dog involves more than food and trips to the vet, they should be nurtured as the friends that they are.

Written by Robert Gold, a writer for a dog daycare in Chicago, IL

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