Thursday Thirteen – 13 Essential Things Every Dog Owner MUST Have
There are lots of things dog owners can disagree on, like “dog parks, yes or no?” and “Spay/neuter – before six months, or after?”, but they can’t disagree with my list.
Seriously. This list is it – the stuff you’ve got to have if you want to be a loving, modern day urban dog mommy or daddy.
1. A pocket full of photos
It is essential that, when someone notices you are buying 75 pounds of organic gourmet dog food, and makes the mistake of asking ‘So, what kinda dog do you have?’, you are able to illustrate your answer with visual aids. Think Jewish Bubbe with pictures of the grandkids, only more fur (unless you own Chinese Cresteds, or the Jewish grandkids have Hypertrichosis). Photos of your dog with Santa earn bonus points.
2. A specialized, obscure diet that no one else has heard of
As mentioned above, no one who really loves their dogs would dare to feed a commercial food, and especially not the dreck sold in supermarkets. These days, however, you can’t play one upsmanship with the cool kids at the dog park unless your pet is eating a diet so obscure that even the park bench experts give out an impressed ‘oooooh!’ on hearing about it. Raw feeding is fine, but raw feeding wild caught salmon hand processed by Native peoples is even better, and Aboriginal made Kangaroo protein based food is a pretty close second. Bonus points is you can insert the words ‘wild prey model diet’ into the discussion, and even more of them if you can answer the question “Is it expensive?” with “Well, if you have to ask…”
Just like today’s non fur children with their Baby Genius DVDs, today’s fur kids need toys that do more than just amuse them. Toss out those tennis balls, and get your dog a toy that will build their IQ. The Canine Genius line, for example, features toys that connect together to ‘form puzzles’. Today, chew toys – tomorrow, the New York Times Crossword. In ink.
Gone are the days when only teeny tiny pocket puppies wore clothes. Today’s fashionable dog of every size needs a wardrobe of clothes suited to every type of social situation. Jerseys for sporting events, coats for cold weather, rain slickers for damp days, bathing suits for… umm… lounging poolside, I suppose. For those of us who prefer downtown to uptown, choose from a selection of ‘edgy’ punk rock fashions for your dog, because nothing says ‘Anarchy Now’ like a Yorkie in a sweater.
Do not mistake costumes for clothes, or visa versa. Costumes are for letting your dog show off their creative side, and can be broken out for almost any occasion. While not de riguer for Dobermans, one simply cannot own a Pug without a corresponding closet full of costumes. Pugs are to costumes what Beverly Hills children are to Petit Tresor – you can’t have one without the other.
Heaven forbid that your dog should have to eat tacky, stale, store bought ‘cookies’ from a box. What kind of negligent dog parent are you? Do you know what kind of additives and preservatives are in those? Responsible fur mommies and daddies cook for their dogs, preferably with organic ingredients and co op farmed vegetables. If you’re a slacker fur parent, you can buy fresh made cookies from Three Dog Bakery, but only if there’s one in your neighbourhood, and only if you can live with the guilt of shopping at the soul sucking, corporate Starbucks of the Pet Supply industry.
7. A specialist veterinarian – or six
Yes, I know that when you were growing up, your local vet was a crusty old geezer who only treated Shep when he was on his last legs. Times have changed, however, and your dog now needs to be treated by the veterinary equivalent of a primary care clinic. One specialist for surgery, another for acupuncture, an herbalist for separation anxiety, and a physio coach for recovering from those nasty pulled muscles your dog got hiking trails on the weekend.
Like you, your dog leads a stressed out life. He’s still traumatized by your break up, he has issues related to his early weaning, and there’s the lingering suspicion that he was raised in a less than nurturing environment. Sure, you could drug him – there are a myriad of designer drugs that your vet can prescribe, but isn’t that just covering up the underlying issues? Shouldn’t your pet address them head on, instead of repressing them? Of course he should, so you need to get him a therapist, or risk having him resent you forever – and who wants a passive aggressive Yorkie with mommy issues?
Fine, this one really isn’t essential, but if therapy isn’t working, perhaps it’s time to dig a bit deeper into your dog’s traumatic past – way, way, deep, all the way into his past lives. Was your dog a pampered pet of royalty? A worshiped Egyptian God? A rat catching gutter cur? Find out, with your pet’s own past life reading. Also useful for chatting with Shep, thus allowing you to apologize for the truly poor quality store bought food your mom and dad fed him.
10. Fancy shmancy collars and leads
No self respecting dog parent is going to stick their pet into a nylon webbed Petsmart Monstrosity. After all, collars and leads are where we truly get to let our dog’s creative side fly. Frou frou bejewelled designs for the Pampered Poodle Princess, Spike and Bones gear for the tough guy Terrier with a hip side, or Diamond encrusted platinum necklaces for the dog who inherited Leona Helmsley’s fortune.
You know that deep inside your dog there’s a budding literary genius, just waiting to emerge. Why not let him express himself on a blog? After all, can the world really have too many dogs talking in faux baby speak about twips to the evil vet? Of course not. Plus, if you’re lucky, your dog will blog like Johann, instead of one of those baby speaking nitwits.
12. A custom selected, dog friendly vehicle
No one made fun of your friends when they went searching for a car with their new baby in mind, so what’s wrong with picking out your new ride with your dogs in mind? If you’ve spent a Saturday on your hands and knees trying to steam clean out the mess your car sick Coton left after the drive to Grandma’s house, you can relate to the wisdom of buying a vehicle that’s free of carpet. But what about crate height? Places to store leads? Fear not, intrepid car shopper, for there’s website out there just for you – DogCars.Com. With reviews of vehicles written from a dog owner’s P.O.V., it’s your one stop place to find the perfect car for you and your Goldens.
Hint: Honda Element
You simply can’t own any one breed of dog for an extended period of time without giving in to the irresistible urge to start adorning your home with breed specific knick knacks. It starts out simply enough – one day, someone gives you a tasteful little statue of your breed. Soon enough, you’re peering around at flea markets, looking for unique little items you can toss casually on your shelves, the better to showcase your love for your breed. Oh, you set limits – no chalkware, nothing from post war Japan, and definately nothing made out of netting, but it never lasts, trust me. One day, you’re going to wake up and discover you’ve spent a week’s salary and change for a papier mache grotesquerie that scares children and makes your friends worry about your sanity. After that, it’s all downhill to chalkware and carnival prizes.
And if your dog is in obedience school, the owner is sure to mention that he/she is in the “gifted” program. Oh, I’m sorry, that’s parent of non-fur progeny who do that.
I love my Dobie who is pictured in my TT this week.
Di’s last blog post..Thursday Thirteen (Vol. 70)
Oh this is good; it’s very, very good! I can see that as the adoring owner of a gorgeous lab, I have been seriously lacking when making him do with just a place on my bed and his chewed-to-death bone.
I’d better get shopping, quick! 🙂
Thanks for the T13! Mine’s up at
Bella Mocha’s last blog post..Thursday Thirteen # 5
And if your dog is in obedience school, the owner is sure to mention that he/she is in the “gifted” program.
Actually, I was once chatting a woman at Cherry Beach dog park in Toronto, and I asked her about her Border Collie pup. She told me she got it from a breeder who specializes in ‘enhanced intelligence reared litters’. I went blank, then asked her if she was planning to use her dog for herding, or if she competes in dog sports. She said that no, she just wanted a ‘gifted dog’.
oh very very good…
I have most of those… except for costumes and clothes… Bullmastiffs Do NOT play dress up…
(unless they are sleeping and I happen to have a camera)
So funny about the past life thing.. its the question I dread almost as much as “does my dog love me”.
Fuzzy Logic’s last blog post..I can’t let go
its the question I dread almost as much as “does my dog love me”.
Really, because what if you have to answer with “No, he can barely stand being in the same room with you?”. That would suck. I would never dream of asking what Delilah thinks of us, as I fear the answer would be ‘politely contained loathing, and disappointment at the shocking lack of home made cookies’.
I just love feeling the love in the dog person community. This is full of heart, for sure.
Is there a link for your litters? Do you ever sell Frenchies?
Rian Fike’s last blog post..Thursday Thirteen: A Revolution in Yin Yang Alliteration.
Believe me.. it’s happened…
I think my favorite was the owner going on and on about how much she loves her fuzzypoo Kitty Cat and he’s so sweet and I know he’s just worried I’ll love the new baby kitten more and please tell him I love him SOOOOOO Much and I’ll do ANYTHING for him…
Do you know, that Cat had it in for that kitten? Seriously.. wanted him dead… He was NOT the sweetest cat in the world by any stretch..
Fuzzy Logic’s last blog post..I can’t let go
@ Rian Fike –
We’re full o’ love for just about anyone but Peta…
All my breeding links are up there at the top, but my main site is https://www.bullmarketfrogs.com
I hate selling Frenchies, but since I can’t keep them all (or at least not until I have those 200 acres I’m dreaming of..) I do occasionally sell a puppy (with great regret, and a lingering feeling of guilt over letting them go in any sort of mercenary transaction).
I absolutely love your thursday 13! I am a dog lover big time! My 13 are about things my dog understands! I have a lot of dog blog buddies at my place too! Will be back to read more-just had a few minutes now. Come check out my 13: http://mercedesrules.wordpress.com/2008/02/28/thursday-thirteen-1/
Mercedes’s last blog post..Alphabet Soup
So funny, yet so true. I am one of those guilty of feeding my dog a specialized diet. Happy TT!
Ruff Diamond’s last blog post..Wordless Wednesday: 11 weeks in the making
Wow, I hope my little pookie wookie snuggymuffs don’t read this post because I can see I’m definitely not keeping up with the Jones’s here….
Thanks for the laugh, too true.
Wow, I hope my little pookie wookie snuggymuffs don’t read this post because I can see I’m definitely not keeping up with the Jones’s….
Thanks for the laugh, all too true.
Ah yes. We’ve got many of these, including both clothes and costumes (indeed!)
But *I* am the one who needs the therapist at this point!
Katie’s last blog post..Harv, Seizures, and My Frayed Nerves.
Perfect! I won’t admit to how many apply for us.
I’m sure Missy loves us but she also considers us her staff to some degree. She has this look that says “You are all mere peasants and do not compare to my greatness!”
I do not dare allow her a blog. She might try to take over the world.
P.S. Did you ever get my e-mail?
Marie’s last blog post..Great expectations
I am personally guilty of 11 out of 13 of the above offences times 4 – because I have four dogs – does that equal 44 essential things I have because each of my dogs is a separate breed, since they’re all rescue dogs – and they all have allergies to different things, are different sizes, so they need different coats – although they DO share the same psychic, and physiotherapist, and they are able to share the same dehydrated liver that I make for them. But they eat different types of food. And I make my own collars for them. And when I dream….. I dream of dogs…..
Dogkisser’s last blog post..A Day spent sick in bed
Funny, scary – and all too true.
My whole stinkin’ life has gone to the dogs. Friends, hobbies, house – even my career. I’m doooomed….. (she says in a parody of the wicked witch melting)
SmartDogs’s last blog post..Where’s the Beef?
So true, so funny! What a great list….have to admit I have almost all of them. I strongly object to any clothing, however, unless it’s geared toward the sporting dog, like my life vest, no fufu stuff for me 🙂 And thanks for mentioning my blog! Woofs, Johann
Johann’s last blog post..Irish Wolfhounds to lead St. Patrick’s Day parade in NY!
I like #2. My friends tease me about #1. lol. That was a fun Read!
French Bulldog Blog’s last blog post..Frenchie Friday’s Feature #6 – FBDV’s Boomer