Could we be a match?

TO: Potential Dog Owner

FROM: Fido

Hey, I heard you were looking for a new pet…Well, if you are thinking about a dog (can you see my tail waggin’), let’s talk.

I have been dreaming about my human family for as long as I can remember.  We are man’s best friend after all.                                                                                                                            

You see, we are a lot like you; we need to eat, exercise, go to the doctor, take a bath, get a haircut and just like you we need lots and lots of love and attention. To help make sure we are a good match, here are some things to consider, I’m ready to bark all about it!

To help make sure we are a good match, here are some things to consider, I’m ready to bark all about it!

1.  Consider how much time and energy you have to spend with me. I can bring you lots of love but some of us are more ‘needy’ than others. Our energy levels run the gambit from couch potato to ‘off the chain.’ If you are on the go all the time maybe a cat is better…just saying. If snuggling with you on the sofa or sleeping under your desk while you are working, a good fit might be a Chihuahua, Shih Tzu, Bulldog, or Toy Poodle. A Labrador Retriever, Border Collie, or Australian Shepard on the other hand will require lots of time and energy on your part.

2.  We come in all shapes and sizes. Consider if you want a lap dog or one of us with more size and stature. Some of us can be very high maintenance and will need lots of grooming. Oh, and keep in mind, some of us shed more than others. I’ve even heard some humans are allergic to us-what the heck?

3.  Let’s talk lifestyle. We are going to be spending a long time together and we each have needs. Some of us need lots of space to ‘run in the wind’ and some of us are good with small spaces. You don’t want us to develop health issues, be bored, or destroy things do you?

4.  Do you live in a region where the weather is hot year round or freezing cold during the winter season? Some of us thrive better in certain climates and it definitely makes a difference if you want us to spend more time in the outdoors. I’m shivering just thinking about this. Remember, we are very social creatures and none of us should be left outdoors exclusively.



5.  I don’t know how busy you are but keep in mind we need training. Our base model includes eating and drinking and relieving ourselves…anywhere, anyplace, anytime. Not bragging but some of us tend to learn quicker… Bragging rights for the quickest learner according to the AKC goes to the Border collie. PUPPIES-that’s a whole other topic!

6.  It is very important to consider the sociability factor. I am extremely friendly and will greet everyone. Some of us are laid back, family friendly, get along great with other pets while others are instinctively more protective, loyal or possibly standoffish. This could be a deal breaker for me…

7.  Like you, we have feelings. Consider whether you want a roommate or a companion. Different breeds, different affection levels.

8.  This is a non-negotiable, you will need to invest in time and money. According to the ASPCA the annual cost for a dog is estimated around thirteen to eighteen hundred dollars. The AKC surveyed over a thousand dog owners with an average annual cost over two thousand dollars. This is a big commitment and we are not cheap. You will need to pick-up the tab for our food, vaccinations, spaying, neutering, pet care, dental and regular wellness care. Include our hair and nails…we can be a tad costly. We really appreciate a good caregiver. I think this is where I am supposed to say how loving, awesome and fantastic we are!

9.  Let’s talk exercise. Some of us need a lot of regular exercise. We can be great running buddies. The Vizslas is a great example of the ‘under 7-minute miler’ running companion. Some of us have a background as a working dog so we would need a lot of mental stimulation every day. Psst, don’t tell anyone but herding dogs are some of the smartest!

10.  Lastly, our relationship is going to last a lifetime, literally, 5–10–15 years or longer. Yep, we will be growing old together. Think Sheriff Woody and Andy (Toy Story) — best buddies forever!

Now that we have a set of guidelines I want to remind you why I’m such a ‘catch’. I will provide you companionship, entertainment, teach you responsibility, provide security, keep you healthy (yep -that’s a fact) and be 100% devoted to you. I’ll never ask questions and will love you unconditionally. I will be your best friend forever. We are worth it, I promise!

Are we a good match?


Originally published in The Lake Norman Citizen by Robin Blair-A Loving Leash