There’s a lot of responsibility that comes with dog ownership. The moment you invite a pet into your home, you’re making a thousand promises, and that dog put all his hope in you. Not just til puppyhood is over – but for his whole life.
Your dog may not be able to tell you everything he needs from you, but whatever good human wrote the following made a pretty good guess at what a dog might say to a new owner. These are the things we should promise our dogs when they come into our lives.
1. My life is likely to last 10 to 15 years. Any separation from you will be painful to me. Remember that before you buy me.
2. Give me time to understand what you want from me.
3. Place your trust in me. It’s crucial to my wellbeing.
4. Don’t be angry with me for long, and don’t lock me up as punishment. You have your work, your entertainment, and your friends. I only have you.
5. Talk to me sometimes. Even if I don’t understand your words, I understand your voice when it’s speaking to me.
6. Be aware that however you treat me, I’ll never forget it.
7. Remember before you hit me: I have teeth that could easily crush the bones of your hand, but I choose not to bite you.
8. Before you scold me for being uncooperative, obstinate, or lazy, ask yourself is something might be bothering me. Perhaps I’m not getting the right food, or I’ve been in out in the sun too long, or my heart is getting old and weak.
9. Take care of me when I get old. You too will grow old.
10. Go with me on difficult journeys. Never say, “I can’t bear to watch it,” or “Let it happen in my absence.” Everything is easier for me if you are there.