This is mostly a rant, but I think that it extends beyond the individual circumstance and encompasses who I am and the way I live my life. I don’t like being told what to do.
Those that know me, stop laughing. Seriously. You’re getting stares.
It goes further than that, though. I don’t tell others what to do (Susan, hush) and I don’t like it when one person/group/agency/whatever tries to tell another what to do. Makes me uncomfortable. Hey, maybe that’s why I’m sometimes uncomfortable in church! Oh but that’s another blog for another day…
Anyway, I was on one of my greyhound message boards recently and came across a post talking about a “stupid” person who had left a dog in a car. Granted, I might think worse things than just “stupid” about a person who left a dog in their car in this weather, considering I moved off the surface of the sun (Montgomery) to a side of the sun (Greenville) and have yet to see a day where the temp is 88F or below. What bothered me, though was how FAST others on that board were jumping on the bandwagon, offering suggestions about phoning the police or trying to get the poor dog out of the car. I’m all for animal welfare, don’t get me wrong, but I’m also all for my own welfare. Who is going to feed my dogs if the 300lb muscle man that owns the car I’m so thoughtfully rescuing Fluffy from comes along, sees what I’m doing, and beats me to a pulp?
I recalled in my post how I went to the grocery store once during the colder months and left the dogs in the car for about five minutes or so while running in to get something FOR THEM. I returned to find a note on my car that said “Shame on you for leave dogs in hot car.”
Seriously, if you’re not going to be brave enough to stay around and confront me for leaving my dogs to warm up a car when it’s COLD outside, at LEAST learn to use proper grammar. I don’t want to have to put forth the effort to translate your sad attempt at chastising me into proper English before I crumple it and throw it in a bin. Further, if English is not your first language, write it in your first language. Then I can have the nerdish joy of translating your note before I crumple it and toss it in said bin. At least my mind will have been stimulated along the way.
I then went on to say that I didn’t agree with the poster that stated that things come up and you may get stuck in the store longer than is safe for your dogs to stay in the car. I’m sorry, unless you’ve got me hand-cuffed or hog-tied, if it comes time to go back to my dogs and I’m not done in the store…well…I’m done in the store. If what you are doing in the store is so much more important than paying attention to how long your dogs have been in the car, perhaps you should have gone home before stopping. People who have been to my house or been anywhere with me and my dogs can tell you that I am always aware of where they are and what they are doing. Sometimes I think that the world would be better if parents of human children kept tabs on them the way I do on my dogs, but again, another blog post for another day.
I guess I’m different, but I feel like my dogs are my responsibility. That means knowing where they are and what they are doing at all times. Not really hard if you love your animals and want what’s best for them, especially for families with single pets. I have four, and I can tell you as I’m typing this that two are on the dog beds and/or sofa in the den, one is on the futon in the rec room, and the cat is under my comforter hiding from the GE repair man that left four hours ago. Not tough.
I hear it all the time…people who clearly know better than I do telling me what to do with/for/about my dogs. The man at Publix comes to mind that told me I was killing my dogs by feeding them a raw diet. Until you live in my head and my house, you can’t know what is best for me and my furry family and I simply won’t tolerate you repeatedly telling me that you do. I don’t care how many greyhounds you’ve found homes for or that you know the inner workings of a dog’s GI tract OR that you graduated from X, Y, or Z with a degree in WHATEVER. Unless you know me and my dogs and respect how I take care of them as well as how I live my life, you can bet on the grain of salt that will be accompanying your advice in my mind.
Wow. I feel better.