A Nurse with a Gun

Saturday, February 21, 2009

A Dog's 10 Commandments

1. My life is likely to last 10-15 years. Any separation from you is likely to be painful.

2. Give me time to understand what you want of me.

3. Place your trust in me. It is crucial for my well-being.

4. Don't be angry with me for long and don't lock me up as punishment. You have your work, your friends, your entertainment, but I have only you.

5. Talk to me. Even if I don't understand your words, I do understand your voice when speaking to me.

6. Be aware that however you treat me, I will never forget it.

7. Before you hit me, before you strike me, remember that I could hurt you, and yet, I choose not to bite you.

8. Before you scold me for being lazy or uncooperative, ask yourself if something might be bothering me. Perhaps I'm not getting the right food, I have been in the sun too long, or my heart might be getting old or weak.

9. Please take care of me when I grow old. You too, will grow old.

10. On the ultimate difficult journey, go with me please. Never say you can't bear to watch. Don't make me face this alone. Everything is easier for me if you are there, because I love you so.

Hat tip to Mr. Completely



Blogger Jonathan said...

Definitely agree with #10. You owe it your pets to be there.

10:46 AM  
Blogger Matthew said...

I read this aloud to my wife and we both started crying.

1:08 PM  
Blogger Chris Byrne said...

Just one thing about number 7.

There is considerable difference between physical reinforcement (which is gentle, but firm and felt - which on some dogs can require considerable force), and hitting a dog.

The first is a useful and productive training and behavior management technique. The second is a killing offense.

2:18 PM  
Blogger Garm said...

Time to get off the 'net and go play with my dog.

Damn allergies. . .

2:24 PM  
Anonymous Greg T said...

The way I've always looked at it is thusly: When I get a dog, we become a pack. That dog is willing, in extremis, to die for me and mine. To defend us, to the last breath if need be. I'll go a long way for such a friend, a very long way.

Thanks for posting that, Xavier.

2:29 PM  
Blogger Bob said...

Damnit, I was all choked up the first time I read this, and now it's happening again. A fantastic piece of writing.

4:09 PM  
Anonymous Ross said...

Dog owner's prayer:

Lord, please let me be as good a man as my dog thinks I am.

And why is my word verification "excon"?????

5:03 PM  
Anonymous Joseph said...

I agree with Jonathan. I wasn't there when my beloved German Shepard died, and have never forgiven myself for it.

And yes, they are completely dependent on you. They cannot get food, open a door, or get water for themselves. And due to a dog's undying loyalty and love, we owe them our best.

5:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Powerful. Although we treat our pooch like a member of the family, its always good to remember what she needs from us...

5:22 PM  
Blogger George said...

Beautiful, Xavier. All dog owners must agree with all of them.

No. 10 is especially poignant, though.

I've only had one dog and I made the vow that she wouldn't face the Great Leap without me. I was true to my vow and she took that last big breath in my arms. Of course, I couldn't see a thing.


5:46 PM  
Blogger TheBronze said...

That was awesome, X.


12:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ginger agrees with you.

Since I like 4 legs better'n 2 most days, and have more friends thereabouts (and quite satisfied with that, thank you)I agree with her.


12:16 AM  
Blogger Katar Hol said...

Concerning number 10, I have done this 3 times in my life and it doesn't get any easier but I felt better having been there.

5:22 AM  
Anonymous askmomsheknows said...

Oh Gosh, Xavier.....The thought of how vulnerable and dependent our loving, brave and loyal little creatures are! Someday we'll part ways, but I believe that heaven, by it's very definition, will include our faithful friends. I just blogged about my dog two days ago and she is snuggled up close to me as I write this!

3:52 PM  
Blogger The Archivist said...

I was good until number 10. It has been 5 years since I made that trip with my true friend, and it still miss him. Still, I owed it to him, and I would do it again, and I would bawl all the way home, just like last time.

6:46 PM  

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