I can’t remember if I’ve written about this before, so I guess I’ll write about it now. If we have two posts on it, then I guess we do.
Today I walked into a store, and this guy walked towards us. Trixie tried to sniff him and I said no. He then said he had a dog at home. Then he poked me in the arm and said “Nothing against you,” and then looked at my friend, talking right around me and said, “But I don’t think it’s natural that dogs do that sort of work.” Then he walked off.
I have several problems with that whole thing. First, if you don’t think it’s right that my dog is working, then you can’t say “nothing against you, but.” You don’t approve of what I’m doing. Grow a set of balls and talk to me.
Second, do not talk to my friend. Talk to me. If you have something to say, say it to me.
Third, don’t walk away before I have a chance to respond. I guess I’ve made my point that you’re a coward.
Fourth, since I could not talk to you because you walked away, allow me to address your point that it’s not natural that dogs do this.
In case you didn’t know, dogs are pack animals and like to be with their pack leader. Since we humans *should* end up being the pack leader, then wouldn’t you think my dog would be pretty happy? She ends up going with her pack leader everywhere, and seeing all kinds of neat things along the way. Compare that to a pet dog who spends its life out in the yard or in the house, and sometimes ends up barking to amuse itself. Hey, I have nothing against pet dogs, but I’m making a comparison.
Perhaps the people who think that it isn’t natural are misguided and think that Trixie has to work all the time. Nope. Whenever we’re at home, she’s free to be a dog. And, there have been many times when I take the harness off so she can say hi to people. All work and no play would make her a dull dog, so that’s why she gets to play.
And most importantly, none of these dogs are forced to do this. Many dogs end up not becoming guide dogs because it becomes evident that they don’t like the work. They run from the harness, become deflated when the harness is put on, or show other signs that this just isn’t in it for them. At any time, as Trixie gets older, she could tell me she doesn’t want to do this anymore. If they don’t have the will to do something, they just won’t do it. But for now, she still runs to me when I grab the harness, and she seems sad if I do leave without her. So, that’s gotta be worth something.
So this little note goes out to everyone who thinks my dog is a slave. If she is, she’s the happiest and most willing slave I’ve ever seen.