Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Pooches: On Dog Ambassadors and Being Well-Taken Care Of

When we were walking our pups downtown during a short Staycation, I overheard a tourist commenting to his friend "It's refreshing to see dogs so well-taken care of".
Maybe he was struck by their Burberry-esque scarfs (thanks Sirius Republic!), maybe that we were all walking together in the cold Chicago weather, or maybe that we were dutifully treating our walk like a training walk and our dogs were practicing good check-ins. 
While we have done a lot of training with our dogs, we know we are lucky that our dogs can be comfortable in a variety of noisy and crowded situations. We also know people who work 10 times harder with their dogs, but some dogs are naturally shy or fearful, and they may never feel comfortable with these types of situations. It also makes us feel bad when we hear people who think they have failed because some of the issues they're working on with their dogs don't highlight them as dog ambassadors.
Knowing we're all a work-in-progress, and thinking about what this guy said, isn't part of promoting positive ownership about putting your dog in good situations and showing that they are well-taken care of?

Also:
Have you seen how our pups are dogs-in-progress too?
Our City Dog in training?
We always love these stories (and read all the way to the bottom for the full list!)

9 comments:

0f4c0732-c210-11e2-b00e-000bcdcb8a73 said...

"Well taken care of" has different meanings to everyone. Some look at just the care in general. Food, water, shelter and vet care. Those are the basics. Having a good relationship with your dog is part of the caring process too. The fact that my older than dirt border collie(per my vet and a friend who breeds border collies) still has ball drive and wants to be with me says I've done a good job on having a positive relationship with him.

Luv My Rosie said...

I take it as a compliment when I am told what great shape my 9 year old pittie is. She still has the energy of a puppy and she looks fantastic (except for her gray face). People are shocked when I tell them how old she is. I take great pride in showing her off and taking her to as many places as I can. Since pitties get such a bad rap, I love it when people tell me "she doesn't look like a vicious dog" as she politely lays down and demands a belly rub. Its people like us who love our pits so much that can change people's perception of the breed!

Luv My Rosie said...

I take it as a compliment when I am told what great shape my 9 year old pittie is. She still has the energy of a puppy and she looks fantastic (except for her gray face). People are shocked when I tell them how old she is. I take great pride in showing her off and taking her to as many places as I can. Since pitties get such a bad rap, I love it when people tell me "she doesn't look like a vicious dog" as she politely lays down and demands a belly rub. Its people like us who love our pits so much that can change people's perception of the breed!

j said...

I get what they meant - I see a lot of people who have dogs as things, not family members. Everyone has different financial abilities to spend on their dogs, but you get your kids hair cut and make sure she's doing her homework, right? I cringe when I see dogs with long nails or barking their heads off at nothing. Why these people have pets I'll never understand.

Two French Bulldogs said...

You never fail to show the great qualities of your pups
Benny & Lily

jet said...

I have had people remark on Barbie's shiny coat and say 'wow you take good care of her'. Of course I do!

But then they get offended if she shies away from their attempted head pats.

I wish more people knew how to approach dogs properly!!!

Hannah@Eriesistibull said...

" It also makes us feel bad when we hear people who think they have failed because some of the issues they're working on with their dogs don't highlight them as dog ambassadors."

Tess is a natural ambassador- she's sweet, friendly (but not too much), a quick learner, and always on her best behavior.

Ed, on the other hand, is so much more work. We have to make sure we put him in highly controlled situations, in order to keep him calm and comfortable. We always tell ourselves (and maybe partially so we keep our heads up) that we are using Ed as an ambassador in a different way - showing the progress you can make with good management! Ed was a wild animal when we first brought him home and he's made such huge strides. We like highlighting that!

Maggie said...

To me, "well-taken care of" means the owner acts in the dog's best interest. That means being educated about your dog (and canine behavior in general) and what situations are not good or even dangerous for your pooch. It means being protective.

For example, last Sunday, all the world was out in Wicker Park. Cars, people, kids. A guy was walking his beautiful red pittie off-leash letting him run well ahead of him in the very busy intersection of North/Milwaukee/Damen.

I thought, this guy must not care about his dog because sooner or later, running into the street like that, his dog is going to get hit by a car. The dog was very sociable and could have been an ambassador, but not with that irresponsible owner.

A Wonderful Dogs Life said...

Miss M and Mr. B are very well cared for. They are 2 very lucky dogs

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