0153F: Life With a Dog

Post-Shower Yoshi
I'm really happy that Tobie and I have Yoshi to share our lives with. He's quite the essential member of the Sietch household now and has such a strong personality to boot. But he's also extremely friendly to guests and visitors thus his role here does not at all include security.

Having a dog, even a small one, is like having a baby full-time. We can't clearly communicate what he wants and so you need to be extra-attentive to his moods in order to determine what's wrong. He needs help caring for himself and thus one has to constantly monitor his food intake and such. And given our use of cloth pee pads to manage his waste disposal, it means forever washing all those mats like one would wash cloth diapers for a baby. It's a full-time job in itself and Tobie and I do our best to manage it together.

It's not like I didn't like dogs before, mind you. My family has always been big on dogs and they've been a constantly source of companionship over the years. That has been a mixed bag of love and loss, but such is the fate of any pet owner. It does not prevent us from continuing to love these cute little animals.

Yoshi's little dog bed
From a tricks perspective, he has already built up an unusual portfolio of things that make us go "Aww..." and such. He constantly wants to be where all the action is and sort of behaves like a person in that regard. He can deliberately call your attention by reaching out to you, even if he can't go much higher than one's knee. And more recently he has learned how to jump onto our bed, thus sometimes joining us there if only to see what the buzz is all about.

I think one of his more endearing actions is when he catches me and Tobie holding hands while watching TV. We'll eventually find ourselves surprised to see Yoshi's paws also on our hands, trying to join in the moment of simple intimacy. Oh you crazy little dog you.

And while I miss my former cats Smoke and Mist and the different experience that is being a cat owner, that does not replace the joy that I feel with Yoshi running around the house at all hours of the day. Thus Tobie and I do our best to not only just care for his basic needs but make him constantly feel loved and adored. We have little spoiling sessions where we cuddle him and stroke his belly. We try to play fetch for as long as we can, or at least until Yoshi gets bored and stops bringing the ball back. And sometimes I just lie down on the floor with him and the two of us just sort of hang out for a moment.

So yeah, life is so much better with a dog.