April 17, 2020. My sixth blog post in the Coronatimes
I grew up a cat person, but when I finally got dogs as a 40 year old, I didn’t know how it would go. I had always thought dogs were stinky and I hated when they jumped on you; but honestly, I think because I had never had one, there was fear. There seemed to be so many rules and they required so much attention. Cats pretty much take care of themselves.
The second we adopted our rescued Jack Russells, Jake and Levi, eleven years ago, I became a dog person. I never would have thought that would happen, but these puppies were like babies and with my own children growing up so fast, having babies in the house again filled a hole I didn’t know was there.
Beyond that, in stark contrast to the cats that I’d grown up with, my doggies remain always happy to see me at the end of the day, they never get mad at me, and just the mention of a treat or ride in the car sets them in an excited frenzy.
Does any of this sound familiar to you? I don’t know your feelings about the Coronatimes, but I’m convinced I have become canine. Suddenly the reason why dogs are so happy to see you is so apparent. They’ve been cooped up inside the house all day, again today, and just the mere hint of the door opening or the sound of the garage door whispers a hope for something or someone different to focus on. I know this because when Mike or Cate come home from running a errand, I pounce on them immediately because I want to know of their experience on the outside. And while they may have only been gone for half an hour, it feels like they’ve been gone forever.
Dogs really have never met an enemy. They may be wary of other dogs, but they’re normally happy to see others and want to experience what they’re about. Sometimes they keep their distance, but are genuinely happy to see others getting to run and play, too. I swear during our bike rides in these Coronatimes, the mere sight and distant wave to a friend I haven’t seen in a few weeks makes me giddy. Like going to the dog park, I have to hold myself back from going over to sniff their backside to ask, “Hey man, how you holding up?”
Quarantine has been all about the alcohol and snacks. At first it was easy to overdo on both of them, but as this thing drags on, one realizes that you need to rein it in a little or you might have to do a full on intervention and go into starvation mode when this thing is over. NOTE: Trying on your pants sporadically through the week to see how you’re doing is advised. With this realization, alcohol and food “treat” times have been set to certain times of the day or days of the week. And when you get closer to that day or time, I’m like my pups when they come in from going tinkle, nearly out of their skin and desperate…give me my damn treat already…thank you, thank you, thank you….crunch, crunch, crunch, glug, glug, glug.
Yesterday I had to run to the bank and to the mail drop box. I asked Mike if he wanted to take a ride in the car and I might as well have asked Jake and Levi to go. His eyes lit up and the panting started. Well, not really, but when we got in the car and drove away from the house, it was hard to hide our excitement at the concept of being “out”. Mike even rolled down the window and stuck his head out. A short drive around the neighborhood brought immediate stress reduction and I wish I had taken him for a drive days earlier.
Bottom line, dogs may be basic, but this quarantine has made us basic. It’s brought back the simple pleasures that dogs enjoy every single day. And look at them. They’re so happy. Do we really need more?
Don’t answer that.