I love people who love dogs. Except when I don’t.
There’s one kind of dog lover who pisses me off every time. That’s the dog lover who loves dogs so much that they totally disrespect humans. And as a result, make things even harder for me and other dog lovers.
What do I mean? Check out my list.
Disrespectful Dog Lovers
walk their dogs off leash in public areas despite the fact that they can’t recall their dog to their side in an instant
insist on bringing their dog with them into businesses whether they have a dog-friendly policy or not
rent cars or vacation homes without bothering to clean out the dog hair before they leave
seek out bogus companies that “register” their dogs as service animals so they can bring dogs with them despite them not having the training or responsibilities of an actual service dog
let their dogs bark loudly for long stretches of time then insisting that anyone who complains is a jerk who just hates dogs
feed their dogs off their plates in pet-friendly restaurants
refuse to pick up after their dogs on a walk—after all, their leaving is small and it’s only natural
allow their dogs to jump on strangers to say hello
stop to pet service dogs while they’re working
bring their dog with poor social skills to the dog park and laugh when he bullies other dogs
walk their dog on the end of a flexi-leash and not even notice the dog is trampling flower beds or harassing cats along the way
allow their dogs to play in their laps while they’re driving
come rushing up to greet strange dogs despite being warned off that the dog is in training or fears strangers
take their dogs with them in the car every day, despite the weather not being suitable to leave a dog behind while her person does errands
dress their dogs or put them in “cute” situations without desensitization training and ignoring the dog’s discomfort
allow their dogs to run up to a stranger and when it’s obvious the person is afraid, yelling, “he’s friendly; he just wants to say hi”
And the list could go on.
Dog Lovers Need to Love People Too
Or at least to respect them a little bit.
Listen, I get it. You love dogs so much you can’t help yourself.
I’ve been there.
I squee inside when I see a service dog and have to force myself not to run a hand across their fur when I pass one on the bus. I’d like to take Honey with me into every shop and restaurant. And believe me, if I thought it was reasonable to leave a trail of dog hair in every rental car or beach cottage we rent, I’d do it in a second.
But I can’t. Because I’m a communitarian. Whatever I do, I try to think of how it will affect other people around me (and even in the world community).
Think of it as the opposite of libertarianism.
But I’m not totally selfless either.
I want to live in a world where I can take Honey with me everywhere I go. I’d like to see restaurants allows well-mannered dogs inside, not just on the patio. I want to get rid of “no dogs allowed” signs at parks and playgrounds.
But if rude dog lovers are pissing me off, I can only imagine how much people who dislike dogs must feel. And they’re happy to keep dogs out of public life using the excuse that dogs cause trouble.
Actually, we all know it’s their rude people who are causing the trouble. Dogs are just being dogs.
But as long as there are dog lovers who pit loving their canines against respecting humans all around them, we’ll never see the dog-friendly policies I’d like to see in the U.S.
Can We Make Dog Haters Into Dog Tolerators
There are websites devoted to people ranting about how much they hate dogs.
Sometimes they’re just crazy people. But often they are ranting about the same things on my list of the ways dog lovers piss me off.
If rude dog lovers respected humans a little more, could we turn those dog haters into dog tolerators? After all, what’s to hate about a dog walking peacefully on leash with his person?
Maybe when other dog lovers stop pissing me off, they’ll stop making dog haters insane with rage. And we can make the world just a little more pet-friendly.
Your Turn: What do you think? Are dog lovers dooming our chances of making the world more pet-friendly? If you disagree, tell me why in the comments. If you agree, share this post.