Northwest Native: Dogs are people too.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Dogs are people too.

I was inspired to write this by Taylor's post. I am one of those people who considers my dogs to be like my small, furry children.

The first-born.
 The second-born.

Her post is in response to this article.

I've heard the spiel countless times. Being a mother is the most rewarding thing you'll ever do. I don't disagree, and I'm not putting down anyone who says that! (I mean, I'm sure there's a reason this is such a widespread belief--it must be true!) I am excited to be a mother one day. I can't even fathom the feeling that you are responsible for this human life.

But I have a problem with people like the woman who wrote that article. People who don't feel any sort of remorse being away from their dogs. People who think of a dog as a disposable thing. A few bloggers, including Taylor, have mentioned that when they've moved in the past, people have asked them, "Are you taking your dog with you?" This is the most ridiculous question I've ever heard in my life. If you're taking your human child with you when you move, then I'm obviously taking my dog with me when I move.

A dog is a permanent part of the family. And if something horrible happens, like you have a baby and the dog is not getting along (and you've tried to make it work in various ways), I understand that your human baby comes first. But, it should be with a heavy heart that you set out to rehome your dog to a good home. No, you don't just put your dog up on Craigslist or take them to the pound and call it a day. (And please never give away your dog for free unless you know the people you're giving it to! There are people who respond to ads for free pets and sell them to animal testing facilities to make a buck. Even a fee of $25 should prevent this.)

A dog is not just 'there' and something you don't have to think about. You should be giving your dog love and attention. If you're considering getting a dog and you think of them this way, here's some advice: don't. Dogs are not accessories. Dogs are not disposable. Dogs are not replaceable.

Another problem I have with the article is that all the woman does is whine about how hard parenting is relative to dog ownership. It sounds like she's completely overwhelmed with motherhood and is just angry that someone would equate their dog to a child. The comparison between human child and furbaby isn't the work that goes into it (not that puppies and dogs don't take a fair amount of work). No one said that feeding a dog twice a day is the same as waking up countless times during the night to feed your baby. If you hear that when someone calls their dog their baby, you may need to check your insecurity levels. It's the belief that they're a part of the family. That you love them and nothing could replace them.

There are plenty of people out there who don't want children, can't have children and don't want to/can't afford to adopt. Why can't their pets be their children? No one is saying that you're not a mother or that your child is not your child. Why have a superiority complex and talk down to someone for treating their dog like their child?

Personally, I do think I'll treat my child differently than I'll treat my dogs. For one: less baby talk. You should hear how I talk to my dogs 99% of the time. The things I say, the voice I use... I'm pretty sure if I baby-talked to my children half as much as I do to my dogs they would need major therapy for life.

It's understandable to treat your dogs and children differently...they're entirely different species. They have different needs and wants and life cycles. I'm just saying, dogs should be family, or you shouldn't have dogs. This issue is so near and dear to my heart that it's influenced my reading choices. A lot of bloggers were talking about People I Want to Punch in the Throat by Jen Mann. I thought it sounded sooo funny until the description included people who treat their dogs like children. Yep, sorry, I'm out! I'd rather be punched in the throat than read your book.

In summary: Keep calling your dogs your babies, keep calling your human babies your babies, keep basking in the joy of motherhood (whatever species you call yourself Mom to!).

I'm linking up with Astleigh for The Pick!



  1. Oh my goodness! That article made me so mad! As a mom to both a human child and a fur baby, I have to say that I am insulted. I always call our dog Chance our first born. My husband and I got him when we had been dating only about 6 months (I know... we were crazy... good thing things worked out!), so Chance has been an integral part of our relationship for just about forever. We love him dearly, and he definitely has a huge part of our heart. From one animal lover to another, thanks for the reminder about how important our pets are to us...

  2. People are ridiculous....embrace your kids whatever species they are ;) LOVE IT! Happy Thursday Mattie!

  3. I grew up around dogs since I was a baby. My grandparents had 9 labs at one time, my parents had 2 dogs, and I now have 2 puppies of my own. I cannot imagine ever leaving any of them at a pound or on the side of the road for someone else to pick up. It breaks my heart when I hear about people having to give their dogs away, but what makes me really mad is when people adopt dogs and then treat them like they're disposable. Or they let them roam the streets and get hit by cars. What's the point in even getting a dog then?! I rescued both my puppies from a local shelter. One of my dogs was given to the shelter because she whimpered at night. Really? She is a puppy!

  4. One of my pet peeves is people that give their pets away so easily when they aren't "convenient" anymore - UGH!!!!!!!!! Pets are for LIFE!

  5. Some people should just not have pets...or open their mouths. LOL! My dogs are most definitely treated as members of my family. They are living breathing creatures with feelings just like humans. And they even have their own personalities too! It always breaks my heart when I hear a sad story about a dog that was abused or neglected. And I find it absolutely absurd that someone would ask if you were taking your dog with you when you move! What is wrong with people????

  6. Baby talk with dogs! Hah everyone does it, you're not alone! :)

    I was traveling for work with a bunch of professionals out for dinner and when the house dog came out to play all the men instantly baby talked and it was so funny to see! "Who's a good boy?" Haha!

  7. I don't understand people that give up their dogs so easily. I would move out of my house & do what I could to keep my dog. It's my baby...
    I know people think we go to extreme the way we treat & care for our dog... I don't understand how anyone can do anything less. My fur babies bless me so much, all I can do is take care of them.

  8. That article was awful! I completely agree. She just sounds like she is overwhelmed with being a mom and wants to take it out on dog owners. Geez.

  9. Girl I could not agree with you more. People who treat their dogs like disposable items or even worse shouldnt ever be allowed to have another animal. People grow up and grow independent but a dog will always be relying on you to take care of it and they crave the same kind of love and affection. My dog is my child and if anyone tried to do anything to harm my dog or tell me theres something wrong with me for babying my dog they dont need to be in my life! Sorry for the rant haha. These types of articles make me so mad!

  10. We love our dog and she's definitely part of our family.

  11. Dude you get so many comments! I love this post :) and I loved Taylor's too. I completely agree. I cannot handle it when people get rid of pets so easily. I love my kitties too much for that. And they are my babies and yes I baby talk to them too. :):)

  12. I completely agree! I have two furbabies of my own and will most likely never have human children. Why would moms of human babies be offended by that? It makes no sense!

  13. When I moved to Australia, my dog did not move with me. I have no children of my own, he was my baby. At the time, he was the love of my life. I cried harder over leaving him behind than I did moving away from family and friends. Six and a half years later, I still miss him. I still cry. I am tearing up as I type this. He is with someone who could provide an excellent home. They already had an established relationship. That person can provide financially for any medical bills, grooming, or other costs that may come up. But, I still fell like a parent who abandoned their child. I don't need Jen Mann or the woman who wrote that article that I refuse to read to tell me that my feelings aren't valid.