Whoever said you can't buy happiness forgot little puppies.
February 8, 2017 8:24 PM   Subscribe

sadanduseless.com cast its digital net and caught a bunch of Dads Who Didn’t Want The Damn Dogs In Their Lives.
posted by Johnny Wallflower (72 comments total) 38 users marked this as a favorite
 
My fave is, "My dad didn't want us to get a dog at first. I found this picture in his room."

And there is a whole other one where the evidence of the dad loving the dog is the discovery of a lovey photo treasured by the dad.

Ace stuff!!
posted by grobstein at 8:30 PM on February 8, 2017 [6 favorites]


SadAndUseless.com is one of the most inaccurately named sites on the Intarwebs...
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:32 PM on February 8, 2017 [3 favorites]


How can anyone not want a dog? I don't understand....
posted by freakazoid at 8:36 PM on February 8, 2017 [15 favorites]


Oh gosh, I have one of these stories from observing my cousin and uncle (and Bacon and Poppy) first-hand! It started with your typical first-gen immigrant culture gap type thing, and ended in DOGGY CHEONGSAMS.
posted by btfreek at 8:51 PM on February 8, 2017 [48 favorites]



My fave is, "My dad didn't want us to get a dog at first. I found this picture in his room."


Mine too. There is just something about those two that looks like they might also be living a secret life and having adventures unknown to the family and this is the single piece of photographic evidence that exists. Plus those shades are just right.
posted by lesbiassparrow at 9:11 PM on February 8, 2017 [21 favorites]


> How can anyone not want a dog? I don't understand....

I think it's usually for the hypothetical dog's sake, knowing there's nobody home all day, can't take care of it properly -- not that they don't like dogs. They probably manage to do alright by the dog when it shows up, but too often not well enough not to feel a little bad about it.
posted by smcameron at 9:13 PM on February 8, 2017 [16 favorites]


I think dogs, and to a greater level cats, can sense people who claim that they "aren't pet people," and puppers / kitties will then snuzzle up to them as much as possible, just to prove those people wrong.

But my grandmother really wasn't a cat person at a different level. After cat-sitting for my parents, she said everything was OK, but "the cat would always sit on my papers." Oh, grandma - it's a cat, that's what it does.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:14 PM on February 8, 2017 [7 favorites]


The evidence bears it out:

They're good dads, Brent.
posted by supercres at 10:36 PM on February 8, 2017 [77 favorites]


tau_ceti claimed he didn't want a dog 6 years ago almost to the day, but I overruled him and saddled him with the world's best puppy during a period of upheaval and unemployment (for him). My favorite text from him during the Dog Adjustment Period: "The dog keeps staring at me. Why is he staring at me?"

We now have two dogs.
posted by deludingmyself at 10:55 PM on February 8, 2017 [15 favorites]


Is Johnny Wallflower the dog whisperer? I feel like he is
posted by drewbage1847 at 10:57 PM on February 8, 2017


What they're saying is "If you get a dog it's your dog, take care of it" because they know kids:

1. get dog
2. get bored, neglect dog
3. claim it's now dad's dog, because they obviously have a bond

Dad then wishes for the hundredth time he just had dogs instead of kids.
posted by bongo_x at 11:15 PM on February 8, 2017 [57 favorites]


I think dogs, and to a greater level cats, can sense people who claim that they "aren't pet people," and puppers / kitties will then snuzzle up to them as much as possible, just to prove those people wrong.

Cats at least like people who aren't cat people because these people treat them far more respectfully than most cat people. There's a lot of cat people behavior that cats only tolerate in exchange for food.
posted by wotsac at 11:42 PM on February 8, 2017 [14 favorites]


I am TRYING to get the goddamn dog to follow around and love the kid. I already had a dog, she was awesome, and lived to Yoda's age in dog years. The new dog is awesome, too, but I want her to be awesome for my kid, goddammit, or at least my wife, who misses her dogs who passed too soon.

I think it's because I'm the only one who can take her on walks, as she's a rescue Great Pyrenees and will take anyone smaller than I am on a drag rather than a walk around the neighborhood. Working on that with patient training, as well as not barking up a storm because she heard the little yap-dog a block over losing his shit because he saw a squirrel.

So maybe I'm a little too cool to the dog when around other people.

That said, I had that 90 lb beast in my lap, skritching behind her ears as with abandon when the Pats went for their second 2pt conversion in the Superb Owl...
posted by Slap*Happy at 1:25 AM on February 9, 2017 [3 favorites]


i want 100
posted by poffin boffin at 1:39 AM on February 9, 2017 [4 favorites]


More stories!
posted by hellopanda at 2:28 AM on February 9, 2017 [4 favorites]


How can anyone not want a dog? I don't understand....

OK, a rhetorical question. But you know; slobber, constant walkies, constant noise, constant feeding, shit, slobber, barking, growling at visitors, kennels if you want to go anywhere, vet bills, dog sick, slobber, bringing filth in the house, rolling in filth, eating filth, dog death. And then there's the slobber.
posted by Segundus at 2:41 AM on February 9, 2017 [41 favorites]


Filth, slobber, walkies... Still waiting for the downside.
posted by mochapickle at 2:56 AM on February 9, 2017 [8 favorites]


Dogs are great!

Other people's dogs, though. I'm allergic. Allergy meds allow me some time with them, but not 24 hours a day.
posted by nat at 3:30 AM on February 9, 2017 [1 favorite]


We had a dog when I was in my teens, and my parents kept KC when my brother and I went off to college. At some point in KC's old age, he was looking a little under the weather one day, and Dad went to take him to the vet. During the drive over, Dad began thinking about KC's age, and how he was going to die one of these days, and then that turned into having the "when will I know whether it's time to put him down" talk with himself, to asking himself "wait, what if the vet says it's now," and on and on...

....to the point that when Dad finally got to the vet, he was so upset that he ran in crying, KC cradled in his arms, and wailed, "YOU HAVE TO SAVE MY BEST FRIEND!!!"

KC had an upset stomach. He was fine.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:30 AM on February 9, 2017 [82 favorites]


My husband wasn't much of a dog person, but that didn't mean he wasn't a stealth animal lover. When we married, he said cats weren't allowed in the bedroom. Okay, maybe one cat, but not in the bed. Okay, maybe one other cat. Or all of them, but not in the bed. Well, this one cat is lonely, she can get on the bed, but not on the pillow. Eventually, all four cats were in the bed with us.

To be honest, he was just as charmed by his ferrets, birds, snakes, and one squirrel that went to work with him.
posted by Miss Cellania at 4:32 AM on February 9, 2017 [13 favorites]


I think bongo_x nailed it. That's certainly my reasoning for not wanting a dog in the house. Well, that and knowing that my fastidious wife has no idea just how much dirt comes with dog ownership. Or what forms that dirt takes.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 4:33 AM on February 9, 2017


There are times when I suspect Metafilter is not a place for the dog-averse.
posted by mushhushshu at 4:35 AM on February 9, 2017 [4 favorites]


I like other people's dogs in small doses. But I wash my hands after being around them.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 4:43 AM on February 9, 2017 [8 favorites]


There are times when I suspect Metafilter is not a place for the dog-averse.


There are times when I suspect Metafilter is the dogiverse.

(Myself? I prefer a universe where there are cations.)
posted by GenjiandProust at 4:44 AM on February 9, 2017 [5 favorites]


I balked at us getting a dog at first, and I am a Dog Guy. Immediate reason was practical: We lived next door to an irresponsible woman who had an illegal number of dogs that barked all hours of the night. Wasn't going to throw gas on that fire.

But even after we moved, I hesitated. When you become a parent, even when you watch your siblings do the job up close, you aren't prepared for what a change it is, how little of your time and energy willl be left for you. What little "me time" you get generally comes right before bed. The thought of one more life form to care for did not sound attractive. At all. And I knew the kids wouldn't care for the dog unless told to. So that's one more thing I have to manage on top of potty training, entertaining and educating essentially another kid.

Then we met the rescue lady at a Sonic 30 miles outside of town, and, well, my perspective shifted a bit (self-link, sorry).

Now I get to come home, hear the jangling of approaching tags, and wonder aloud is there a boy in this house, where is a boy, how did a boy get in here, are you a good boy? Then it's kissin' time.
posted by middleclasstool at 4:53 AM on February 9, 2017 [42 favorites]


One dog at first, who sadly passed away at age 12. Then we adopted three dogs from the same litter. We can't have any more! That's it! Then two of the three passed away. We adopted two to take their place. Four dogs. Okay, that's where we have to draw the line, it's impractical, we can't even move around the house without at least three dogs underfoot! There's too many! You can't even walk them all at once!

We're up to five dogs.
posted by blucevalo at 4:58 AM on February 9, 2017 [14 favorites]


middleclasstool: Then we met the rescue lady at a Sonic 30 miles outside of town, and, well, my perspective shifted a bit (self-link, sorry).

A lovely read - thank you for sharing.
posted by sektah at 5:08 AM on February 9, 2017 [4 favorites]


Can we have a rule that we have to have a new dog post from Johnny Wallflower for every 1,000 comments on the current political post?
posted by Cocodrillo at 5:12 AM on February 9, 2017 [33 favorites]


I grew up with dogs and loved them, but don't want my own dog as an adult. I love my friends' dogs, and will take care of them temporarily if they need me to, but I just.. don't want a dog. They need too much from you. I don't have the energy, and I would honestly be worried that I would grow to resent the dog.

Cats are much more my speed.
posted by Kutsuwamushi at 5:33 AM on February 9, 2017 [3 favorites]


Heart = warmed.
posted by jacquilynne at 5:57 AM on February 9, 2017 [1 favorite]


How can anyone not want a dog? I don't understand....

I grew up with dogs and my wife and I had a dog for several years. I like dogs. BUT...Dogs are a lot of work. More work than I am willing to put in. Once our cat is gone, my wife is going to want a dog, and we will be at loggerheads. Thing is, all the house training and walking and feeding and cleaning-up after and taking to the vet, etc. will be on my shoulders because I'm the one who is home all day. And I simply don't want to do any of it. Been there. Done that. Was not impressed.

There won't be another cat, either, fwiw. They're their own special ball of maintenance issues.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:58 AM on February 9, 2017 [5 favorites]


This makes me happy to a degree that I'm crying tears of sweet joy lol.
posted by Annika Cicada at 6:07 AM on February 9, 2017 [5 favorites]


I question whether the last photo is a real dog or a very artfully barbered and dressed beard....
posted by GenjiandProust at 6:29 AM on February 9, 2017


To be fair to the first dad, the dog is not on the couch. She's on the dad, who is on the couch.
posted by allthinky at 6:35 AM on February 9, 2017 [7 favorites]


My ex- absolutely refused to have a dog. After we split, I was watching tv with our son and it hit me that we could get a dog. After a search, I brought home Jake. My son's face as he realized this dog was ours, his, is something I will remember to my last day.
posted by theora55 at 6:37 AM on February 9, 2017 [15 favorites]


This was my dad, but with our first ever family cat, Roxanne.

"You'd better not be feeding that stray cat!"
- One week later
"That cat had better not be coming in the house!"
- One week later
"Oh hi sweet kitty I love you I love you" *kisses cat 100 times*
posted by saladin at 6:53 AM on February 9, 2017 [22 favorites]


My dad hated the dogs. Unless he thought no one was around. Then it was pet, pet, pet, pet, pet, good dog. And then if someone came around it was suddenly "get out!" since he knew he was busted.
posted by azpenguin at 6:54 AM on February 9, 2017 [5 favorites]


I lurrrrve dogs but

slobber, constant walkies, constant noise, constant feeding, shit, slobber, barking, growling at visitors, kennels if you want to go anywhere, vet bills, dog sick, slobber, bringing filth in the house, rolling in filth, eating filth, dog death. And then there's the slobber

You forgot the shedding in double-coated dogs. The biannual shedpocalypses are... staggering.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:59 AM on February 9, 2017 [4 favorites]


"Oh hi sweet kitty I love you I love you" *kisses cat 100 times*

Toxoplasma gondii is a hell of a thing.

I grew up with a lot of cats, and latterly a fair few dogs. But I think I'm perfectly happy enjoying other people's pets.

I think I'm an animal person, but after reading threads like this I suspect I am not.
posted by mushhushshu at 7:01 AM on February 9, 2017 [3 favorites]


I grew up as a dog-loving boy. The dog ran around in the woods, came home with ticks and burrs, and we were all happy. But now I'm stuck with taking care of a 97-pound bulldog with joint issues, abandoned by its owner. Sure, I love dogs, and this one is friendly as hell, but there are many other ways I would prefer to spend my time and money than on this lovable behemoth. Living in the city, giving a dog all the attention and activity it deserves is problematic, to me.
posted by kozad at 7:05 AM on February 9, 2017 [2 favorites]


I love all dogs, but I'll probably only ever live with greyhound dogs, because they're set on Easy Mode. Very little slobber (only when trying to chew a difficult Greenie), very few exercise requirements (a couple walks a day is plenty), don't bark, gentle with people, reasonable amount of shedding, not stinky, sleeps alllll day.

That said, I am moving in two weeks for my dog, who is getting older and struggling with the three flights of stairs in our apartment building. So there is that whole "finding a first floor apartment that allows large dogs during the slow season for real estate (in February in Chicago)" thing, which was pretty stressful, and now the move itself, which is both stressful and expensive.

But otherwise! Pretty easy! LOL.
posted by misskaz at 7:07 AM on February 9, 2017 [6 favorites]


My husband doesn't want a dog. Whenever we visit a dog, he plays with it. I am on to him and when I retire in 15 years or so, we are getting a dog. I know I will have a whole collection of these photos.
posted by soelo at 7:24 AM on February 9, 2017 [2 favorites]


How can anyone not want a dog? I don't understand....

I grew up with dogs. I had a Best Dog once - I ate with the dog, slept with the dog, had adventures with the dog, got fleas and ticks and skeeter bites and caught frogs and fish and did all of the things a Boy And His Dog should do. I don't remember any of the kids I grew up with the way I remember that dog. And then he got sick and he died.

When my wife and I bought our first house, she told me she wanted a dog, and I said no. She's like "you love dogs, and every dog within a block comes to say hi to you. Why wouldn't you want a dog?" So, I told her - why don't we just scoop out a chunk of my heart and bury it in the back yard - It will be both cheaper and faster and it's the same result after all.

She won, of course, (see profile pic) because she's my wife and I can't say no - and lets be honest; I do love all the doggies. My dog is gonna be 9 soon, and he's starting to show his age. I've got some bad days coming, I'm afraid.

I can prove that the Universe is not just : Dogs lives are far too short. Why the fuck should a parrot live for 90 years?
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 7:26 AM on February 9, 2017 [18 favorites]


That damn dog is sprawled in front of the wood stove, being useless. He is NOT MY DOG. Even though I was the one who insisted on getting him, a few months after my mother-in-law died, so my husband wouldn't be alone in the barn, grieving. I wanted him to have a barn buddy, some warm presence calling him back to life and love, and giving him whuffles and a cold nose. That damn dog: he loves sniffing around the barn, chasing the poultry, and pretending not to notice when the pigs are in the yard again. He ignores the baby skunks, but kills big skunks and groundhogs, and "Okay, buddy, where'd you leave the body?" is a regular question around here. He's full of burrs and the smell of creek, and he loves his patrol duties along the fencelines. When I drop to the grass and yell "LAP DOG!" he comes running and knocks me over trying to get in my lap, because, of course, that damn dog is mom's dog.

Last night, around dinnertime, he was in the grass with his head in my lap, doing his best to die. It looked like poisoning, and we thought he was gone when his breathing and heartbeat almost disappeared. The kids--the kids said goodbye and apologized for ever having been mean to him. They put a blanket on him, and around me and I just sat with him, waiting. Then he did that thing with his eyebrows, some roll of the muscle that means "I am confused," and he turned his head and sniffed my hand and tried to get up. He sat down. Looked a little groggy. Then walked over to the house like "It's cold, and I am ready to go in, Mom." Holy shit: he jumped on the couch and I parked myself there with him all night, trying to get him to drink, and waking up to his shifting his smelly fur around to get more comfortable.

This morning? Did a quick patrol in the snow, ate breakfast, inspected the cat food bowls and crashed in front of the fire. And I am grateful. He is not my dog. He's my heart.
posted by MonkeyToes at 7:32 AM on February 9, 2017 [45 favorites]


I love dogs. But I don't want to be responsible for taking care of a dog. This doesn't seem hard to understand.
posted by grouse at 7:38 AM on February 9, 2017 [4 favorites]


I overruled him and saddled him with the world's best puppy

OMG WTF THAT DOG IS THE BEST BEST PUPPY EVAR HURRNNNNGGGGG.

*ahem*

My mother never wanted a dog, although we had one growing up - she thought they were messy and smelly and shed everywhere and can never grow up and take care of themselves like kids eventually can, and then once you were all attached they die and make you sad.

I moved back home after college graduation and lived with my parents while I attended grad school (which lasted a mere 5 months before becoming untenable, but that's another story). I think my mom thought it would be like when I and then my sister were in high school, where we had school all day but then could come home, eat dinner with the family, watch TV with her in the evenings, go shopping together on the weekends . . . Instead, what happened is that I was at work all day and class all evening, and then I spent my weekends reading and studying. A month after I moved back home, my mother came to me and said, "So, I want to get a dog for Christmas."

Now that sucker is the baby of the family and my mother loves him to death.
posted by chainsofreedom at 7:41 AM on February 9, 2017 [4 favorites]


How can anyone not want a dog? I don't understand....

My mother truly, truly did not like dogs. Or any animals. It had nothing to do with taking care of them, she just plain did not connect with them.

Dogs responded with WORSHIP. No matter how many people in the room, any dog present would gravitate to my mother and sit there staring at her adoringly. "Get away from me, you dumb old dog," she would say. This only increased their love.
posted by JanetLand at 8:24 AM on February 9, 2017 [4 favorites]


Most of those men look to me like they've just given up and let the dog lie on them. The dogs surely love them, but I can't help but think that I'm looking at a bunch of men with, at best, Stockholm Syndrome.

(Dogholm Syndrome?)
posted by clawsoon at 8:29 AM on February 9, 2017 [5 favorites]


I don't want a dog. I am a cat person 100%

but have you met a dog? who doesn't like dogs?

and puppies??? with the fat tummies and the butt wigglin'? please...
posted by supermedusa at 8:46 AM on February 9, 2017 [3 favorites]


I've let a lot of dogs sleep on me at various points because they insisted and because I'm deeply uncomfortable with having to figure out how to shove them off of me in a way they'll actually listen to. I don't dislike dogs in theory, but I don't like them in practice. I like watching videos of dogs, where I don't have to smell them, for example. (And I don't have a problem with how cats smell, even the cat box--or, for example, parrots, or rodents. But I firmly dislike the smell of dog.) Dogs in practice, to me, seem like obnoxious children with even less ability to negotiate about their behavior, and I feel just as uncomfortable with someone's dog climbing on me--and just as helpless to do anything about it--as I would be if someone's kid insisted on sitting in my lap.

But I will say that most of these guys look substantially more content with being in that position than I look when I've wound up in that position.
posted by Sequence at 8:48 AM on February 9, 2017 [3 favorites]


This is not that hard to figure out. I speak as a dad who did not want a dog, although I am a dog lover. (But not a Dog Person, or a Cat Person. I don't understand how people can love one and not the other.)

We got our current dog almost eleven years ago, and I did not want to. Our previous dog had died the year before, and it tore the heart out of me. I never wanted to go through that again. Now every minute I spend with our dog is tinged with that speck of dread for the day I know is coming.

And there's the other issue, that taking proper care of a pet is becoming insanely expensive, with regular vet visits and treatment. Vet insurance is a popular option that's looking more and more like a scam; like medical insurance, they eagerly take your money and then deftly evade any responsibility for paying the vet bill. All these factors meet at a vanishing point where your pet reaches a health crisis and you can't afford to pay for the treatment that may or may not work.

So yeah, dogs are great, they endear themselves to you and then don't have the decency to hang around forever. And once you reach a certain age, the possibility of eliminating one source of heartbreak from your life seems like not a bad idea.
posted by Flexagon at 8:52 AM on February 9, 2017 [1 favorite]


My dog Shakedown is the best. My dad's liked her from minute one! That is all.
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 8:52 AM on February 9, 2017 [2 favorites]


And once you reach a certain age, the possibility of eliminating one source of heartbreak from your life seems like not a bad idea.

I'm not a dad, but for the first 40 years of my life I was adamantly not a dog person, for all the reasons segundus listed. Fast forward a decade. Ten months ago my dog died unexpectedly, and for the first six months I cried--I sobbed like a child--literally every day. I was shattered by grief. I've never loved anyone so wholeheartedly and doubt I'll ever be quite right again. Nevertheless I'm going to be picking up a beautiful new puppy in five days and although I know it's what I want to do, a lot of what I'm feeling is a sense of impending doom. Because once you bring them home, the only way out is another broken heart, and I don't see how I can survive that again. But you do. It just keeps beating even when broken. Even when you wish it wouldn't.
posted by HotToddy at 9:08 AM on February 9, 2017 [9 favorites]


My dad is a huge grouchy tsundere when it comes to our cats, whom he constantly disparages and complains about while also insisting on primary cat-care duty for himself. It's my favorite thing about him as a person. 😻

My family had a dog who died before I was born, and you can tell how much my dad loved her by how he has never complained about her and also by how he has never gotten another dog.
posted by nicebookrack at 9:14 AM on February 9, 2017


#6 is clearly a cat in a dog's body.
posted by tully_monster at 9:24 AM on February 9, 2017


Most of those men look to me like they've just given up and let the dog lie on them.

The journey towards happiness and moral rightness begins with a single step, it is true.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 9:32 AM on February 9, 2017 [7 favorites]


This is totally my dad, who objected vociferously to the cat and the dogs. And slept with our old cat like a kid hugging their favorite teddy bear. And who spends much of his time with Dog 2's head on his lap, telling Dog 2 what a good dog he is.

My favorite picture was the one of the Dad who wanted neither a dog nor an ipad, seen cradling both simultaneously.
posted by TwoStride at 9:48 AM on February 9, 2017 [2 favorites]


azpenguin: "My dad hated the dogs. Unless he thought no one was around. Then it was pet, pet, pet, pet, pet, good dog. And then if someone came around it was suddenly "get out!" since he knew he was busted."

This was my dad, but with the cat. And the cat knew it, and played along. We'd catch him carefully making the bed around the cat, or reading with the cat in his lap. The second either of them noticed they'd been caught, he'd give the cat a Dirty Look and the cat would hiss at him and run off, both of them likely thinking "Whew, close one, we almost gave away the secret there"

He never pretended with the dogs, because they probably weren't smart enough to play along. He's definitely a dog guy at heart, but a cat guy in secret.
posted by caution live frogs at 11:14 AM on February 9, 2017 [5 favorites]


My parents never let us have a dog growing up because we were renters, and it was hard enough finding housing with small kids, much less small kids and a dog. "You can have one when we have our own house" was the inevitable answer to our pleas.

We thought Providence had found us a loophole one winter in the form of a friendly German Shepherd that had fallen through the ice of the lake we lived on - my dad saw it from the front porch, ran out, and saved it (I think he actually dove into the freezing water to save it, but I'm not sure).

For three glorious days, we had the dog and it looked like he was here to stay - but then someone responded to our Found Dog posters, and he was repatriated. The true owners were nonchalant about their dog's near-death experience and their lack of appreciation for the luxury of dog ownership always rankled.

The year my parents finally bought a house, divorce was on the horizon, and I was dispatched to boarding school the following year anyway, so the goalposts were moved once again.

I got a dog my senior year of college, because I could, and we had 8 years together that were cut short this summer when she got loose from a dogsitting friend's yard and was killed by a car. I don't think I've cried as hard in my life as I did the day after when I came home to an empty and quiet house. That first day was also my very first day of law school; that whole week, when everyone was making small talk and introductions, I was curt and withdrawn, trying to keep from crying during lectures. Six months later, I still don't know the names of half my classmates because I never made amends for my standoffish beginning. The worst though are the very vivid and frequent dreams I have where she is still alive and so very real.
posted by Aubergine at 11:21 AM on February 9, 2017 [7 favorites]


One way you know you've cornered the market on a subject is when every single Related Post is one of yours.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 12:25 PM on February 9, 2017 [14 favorites]


How can anyone not want a dog? I don't understand....

i love dogs i love them so much, i prefer their presence to other humans, they are the best damn thing on earth that isn't a cat. but i have so many health problems, i can barely fucking take care of myself, some days it's just me and a clock counting down in 10 minute increments in order to get through the constant drilling neverending bonecrushing pain. or i'm unconscious.

my last pupper was a perfect beautiful wonderful angel princess of snorfles and smooches who would contentedly munch kibble right out of your hand all day if permitted, but she too had a vast wealth of health problems and i was having constant anxiety attacks and stress-related puking because of it, because i was sometimes physically incapable of putting her needs first and it was fucking killing me.

i love dogs and i want literally 10,000 of them

but i cannot has
posted by poffin boffin at 12:36 PM on February 9, 2017 [3 favorites]


Growing up, my father had an absolute "no dogs" policy. I don't think I asked more than a few times, because there was so clearly zero wiggle room in the answer. I just always figured he didn't like dogs. We had cats, though, which were uniformly strays he allowed into the house and eventually onto the couches and beds; how someone who was evidently such a softie when it came to worm- and flea-ridden stray cats could have such a thing against dogs, was just one of those Adult Mysteries.

Years later, after I'd moved out and populated a house of my own with a small menagerie of quadrupeds, including an exceedingly lovable (and exceedingly dumb) black lab mix, he came to visit. The dog immediately threw himself at my father, and I hauled the dog back: "Sorry, I know you don't like dogs." He scowled at me a bit: "of course I like dogs." Half an hour later they were napping together on the couch, instant old friends; I don't think the dog was more than three feet away from him the rest of the weekend.

It turns out he had dogs throughout his entire childhood, pretty much one after the other. The last one was a spaniel-esque mutt that he had raised from a puppy, basically the best dog one could ever ask for, with the exception of one streak of odd behavior: it had a thing for motorcycles—which, at the time, were not especially common where they lived. This was its undoing. He and the dog were in the yard one day when the dog saw a motorcycle, and forgot about everything else. Over the fence, into the road, and under the wheels of a car.

Burying that dog in the backyard flower bed, he swore off having dogs; he got too attached to them, I think, and they were gone too soon.

That's the curse of dogs: they are, or can be at their best anyway, the most perfect companions, but it sometimes seems that their time with us is mercilessly short.
posted by Kadin2048 at 12:50 PM on February 9, 2017 [5 favorites]


I totally understand not wanting a dog because it doesn't fit into your lifestyle, but citing how noisy and dirty (poop, vomit, slobber, dirt) dogs are as reasons to not want one strikes me as unfair. There are more than 300 dog breeds in the world; most aren't even slobbery, some barely bark. I have a dog and hang out with other dog owners, and as far as I can tell, clean people have clean houses and clean dogs.
posted by peripathetic at 2:48 PM on February 9, 2017 [3 favorites]


We often had dogs growing up, and they were supposed to be family dogs but they always ended up being my mom's dog. Long after I'd moved away, they went looking for a dog, and with a choice between a Cairn and a Westie, my dad picked the Westie. The Westie had been raised by men and he naturally gravitated toward my dad. And it was such a delight to watch -- Dad was nearly 60 at the time and he'd never had a dog that was his. And now he did.

Dad passed away a few years ago, but the dog is still around, and he's picked up enough of my dad's personality that it's weirdly reassuring to have that continuance. My folks took the dog camping all the time and when you look back at pictures from those adventures, there's always my dad in his camping hat and his loyal little Westie right beside him. Just like the pictures here.
posted by mochapickle at 2:50 PM on February 9, 2017 [2 favorites]


This was me. And those pictures are me now.
posted by stargell at 3:11 PM on February 9, 2017 [1 favorite]


For over a decade, late 80s into 90s, we had a wonderful lab cross and I loved him like nothing else. I decided that next I wanted a golden retriever. I like retriever-size dogs. But our living situation kept us dog free until we moved back to North Dakota in 2010.

We ended up with a Pom/Corgi cross who came from a hoarding situation and took a full year to realize what it meant to be a dog. He knows who he is now. I wanted a golden retriever but hey, he needed a home and we're happy with him. Summer before last, as my mother-in-law was dying, my wife decided she wanted another dog. I wanted a golden retriever. She got a rescued chihuahua. A fucking chihuahua.

And now, when we're in the living room, who begs to be lifted up onto MY COUCH and then climbs us on MY CHEST to fall asleep? Who dug in between MY PILLOWS last night?

I am every man in those photos.
posted by Ber at 3:44 PM on February 9, 2017 [7 favorites]


A most welcome post in trying times!
posted by Glinn at 5:24 PM on February 9, 2017


I like other people's dogs in small doses. But I wash my hands after being around them.
posted by 43rdAnd9th at 7:01 PM on February 9, 2017 [6 favorites]


I had no idea this dad-dog thing, was a thing.

I am a relatively new dog person. Growing up we had dogs, but being on a farm they were always outside, and my parents were pretty adamant about no animals being in the house. (I can remember a piglet we had to hand feed, but other than that, nada.)

Add to that, my dad was always ranting about how small dogs weren't dogs at all.

Cue what I found roughly 3 minutes after my dog and I walked in the door at Christmas.
posted by pixiecrinkle at 8:41 PM on February 9, 2017 [5 favorites]


YAY DOGFILTER! Dogfilter is the best filter. (Okay, Catfilter is also good, but I feel like Cats on the Internet are a bit overexposed compared to Dogs on the Internet)
posted by rmd1023 at 6:50 AM on February 10, 2017 [2 favorites]


Brothers and Sisters, I bid you beware
Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.


So. I am a dog person. But I have chunks of my heart buried in patches of soil around the Southeastern US like so many fortunes buried in fear of approaching invaders. After my last dog died, I said, "No more." But my wife tricked me into going to the shelter under some flimsy pretense and I found another friend. Anxious, high strung, worried, afraid of the outside world and all its mysteries. We were obviously made for each other. We would walk, together, unspeaking for miles in an afternoon, each feeling somewhat less stressed out and able to continue on whatever path the new day would present. We were happy together.

Until.

Until our neighbor, a man with his own set of issues that I know better than to judge, let his horribly ignored dog get pregnant. She delivered a litter of 14 pups into the oven of the hottest July since the Paleozoic. He was in no shape to care, or find homes for, the family so the neighborhood stepped up. We pitched in food and time for the 12 pups that survived. One, by one we found homes, both forever and foster, for all but two. Those two, because of course, ended up under our porch. We brought them and the mother in, bathed them and promised we would find them homes. The mother found a home first. Then it was us, the two puppies, and our other dog. Our other dog who had ramped his worry and anxiety up the the point where he would literally back into a corner, his spine along the crease, and stare at me until I could hear words in my head, clear as a bell: "I can't do this. Please don't do this. I'll do anything you want from me, but not this." I hope I never see such fear, anger and worry on the eyes of another living soul. I'd scratch him on the head and cuddle with him in a separate room and assure him, I wasn't going to let this happen.

So we found a home for the next to last puppy. Our house got quieter. Less sounds of 4 week old puppies and their worried mother, instead the happy playing sounds of a single rapidly growing puppy. I knew what was happening but kept repeating my lies to my dog. You will always tell your friend what they want to hear, even though you know it's the most unfriendly thing you can do. Finally my wife texted me one day that she had taken the remaining puppy to the vet and she was to be ours. I knew better than to argue, I only suggested the obvious name. And welcomed her into the house.

So now. Things aren't perfect. Our older dog still needs to escape on long solo walks and my wife has discovered that training a dog from the word go is work. But they're both asleep on the rug at my feet, Stringer and Avon. Turns our the only really fun part of love is the falling; and it had been a while since I jumped.

You will discover how much you care,
And will give your heart to a dog to tear.

posted by 1f2frfbf at 4:51 PM on February 10, 2017 [6 favorites]


I have to wonder how much being a cat person (and not a dog person) has to do with being an introvert. I like dogs in the same way I like children--it's not so much the mess (cats mostly come housebroken, but ours engage in vomiting as a recreational activity) as it is the emotional and physical dependency that I could do without. When I go to my sister's, her lovable giant goldendoodle comes and puts his head on my lap and drools all over me and makes an absolute pest of himself. It's fine for a little while, but then I just want him to go away and cover someone else in his doggy smell. And they can't leave the dogs alone for more than a few hours at a time. And they have to be trained, and they need constant interaction. All that slavish adoration seems awfully exhausting to its prospective object.

My cats are like me--we like to be in the same room together, doing our own thing; I can sit for hours with a warm cat on my lap without being slimed or begged for 150% of my complete undivided attention, and they are fine alone in the house from a weekend to two months (with an hour's worth of daily human interaction from a cat sitter). They're intelligent and physically and emotionally self-sufficient (if they had opposable thumbs, I'm pretty sure they could learn to work the can opener). Occasionally, they exhibit doglike behavior; occasionally they act like two-year-olds ("MOMMY WHAT ARE YOU DOING IN THE BATHROOM CAN I COME IN?!?"), but for the most part, we respect one another's need for solitude like the grownups we are.
posted by tully_monster at 7:46 AM on February 11, 2017 [2 favorites]


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