People tend to treat their pets like people. It’s just a weird fact of life. If you listen closely, every day you will hear someone refer to their dog as their “baby.” This is despite the fact that a very small percentage of these women have ever birthed a dog.
These same people have a tendency to look down on the rest of us pet owners. Sure, I like my dog. She is very funny and, seeing as she is soft, I enjoy touching her. All around, I like having her.
This, however, does not mean that she is a person. She does things that people do not do like lick her own butt. For some reason, these people always somehow miss the fact that their “baby” has their tongue deep in their nether region.
I had spent my lunch looking for a Christmas gift for my wife when I ran across one of these women. She was posted outside of her dog grooming business trying to drum up customers.
“Excuse me!” she shouted as I passed. She sat at a table, barely hiding the screen printed Schnauzer on her sweatshirt.
I looked around. Having been deliberately avoiding eye contact so as to not engage in conversation with this woman, I was caught off guard. Apparently my theory that no one can speak to you unless they can see the whites of your eyes was not correct.
“Yes?” I said. I sounded very kind but inside, all I could do was hope that she would forget how to talk and just turn around and leave.
No such luck.
“Do you have a dog?”
I, of course, knew the answer. My answer was slow to come out, though, as I contemplated my options. If I told her the truth, she would continue talking to me. If I lied, I would carry the guilt until eventually it manifested itself by eating through the lining of my stomach. It was quite the dilemma.
“Yes…” I said, hesitantly.
“Do you groom your dog?”
Now I was beginning to get annoyed. Strangers have a lot of nerve asking me questions, but two in a row was crossing some boundaries. This was not a Barbara Walters interview. All I wanted to do was walk past this woman and to my car, driving away and putting this woman’s sales pitch behind me literally and figuratively.
“No.” I said. I was sure my firmness got my point across. I did not want to be there anymore and there is no way she would continue talking to me. She would leave me alone and we could both go about our days.
“Well, you really should. Why not?”
WHY NOT?! I briefly thought about concocting a story for the woman, telling her that my dogs had no need for grooming. After all, I did not care what they looked like before I put them in the dog fighting ring. This would, no doubt, lead to her calling the Human Society and the Dog Police and whatever authority figure there is policing dog fighters. They would stake out my home and make my life a nightmare.
“She is a short-haired dachshund,” I said, ignoring my urge for sarcasm.
If I loved my dog more, I would probably be very interested in grooming. I would get her extensions and paint her nails. She would be the epitome of all that is dog.
This would require hanging around more women in Schnauzer sweatshirts, though. I don’t think I’m ready for that type of commitment.