Why keep dogs?

Coco, my Labrador

Well there are many reasons I can give you. Kids universally love dogs. They find them cute and they feel that a puppy is an animated stuffed toy. They love to cuddle and hug a dog till time’s end. I can’t tell you how many children come home to play with Coco. So most often, it is the children who push their parents to get a dog. Another one is that they don’t have to pick up the poop or potty train them. 🙂 Who wouldn’t love the perks of having a furry friend without the toil? When it comes to adults, many get them because they are pet lovers. So far so good.

But more often than not, the men and women don’t really bring their partners on board. They fail to understand that their spouses may not love dogs, in fact some of them hate them and can’t bear to be around them. Yes, it’s possible and must be understood. Because what happens very often is that a dog who becomes a member of the family and is like a child bears the brunt. Yes, I have seen this very commonly in the gated community where I live.

People tie their pets outside their homes, or leave them on the roof or in the open balcony, giving them no exercise, no opportunity to be around people and most importantly no love. It breaks my heart to see a poor pet lying in a corner lackluster, no glitter of mischief in their eyes, no one to give them the hugs they crave and deserve, leaving them broken and bitter, making them just live out the days of their lives just perking up a little when a neighborhood kid comes along and plays with them.

It angers me and makes me very sad. I have a dog and I know how much he hates not to be sitting close to us. Keeping a pet dog tied outside the house or on the roof at all times totally defeats the purpose of getting a pet. Why didn’t you have this conversation with your spouse before getting the pet home? While I don’t want to comment on what makes people do this but they really have no right to do this to a pet. Unlike a child sometimes, a pet is always a planned decision. Please don’t bring a pet in to your home, if both the partners don’t love the idea of having a dog in their home and are committed to bringing it up together. And for God’s sake, research the breed you are bringing home. What kind of moron says that the pet is kept outside because he sheds or scratches the walls? Well the shedding part is genetic but if your dog does not behave well, it is because you never invested time and effort in training your dog. I know that because I once owned a dog who totally went out of hand because my blind love for him would just not let me discipline him. If you have young children at home, dogs like Labradors and Golden Retrievers who are gentle and friendly make for great companions. German Shepherds and Rottweilers are good watchdogs, not family dogs.

Give a pet your love and you set yourself up for immense happiness for a lifetime. They give you back manifolds in terms of affection, happiness and health. It is as close to selfless love as you can experience. But, don’t bring a pet in your house to satisfy some whim and then leave them unattended to live a miserable existence. Please.

Give the dog its due.

Do you love dogs? Have you noticed callous behavior from pet owners?

39 Thoughts on “Why have dogs?

  1. Yes, callous behavior from owners is not unusual… some due to their stupidity and some due to their age. But if we mistreat a dog, claiming that we have restrictions, we are not being fair to it. Heck, the dog would have figured a way to live on the street. Why do people have to take it ‘under their wings’ and then treat it anything less than a child?

    Honestly, if we cannot love dogs, there is something massively messed up with us.

    Please give Coco Parmar a kiss from me… And then one more…

    • In some homes, after they have a child, the dog loses its place and is tied outside. Imagine that! I am just shocked with the heartlessness with which some people treat their pets. Sure, will pass them on to Coco. 🙂

  2. I have had dogs most of my life except for last ten years or so, when I got so busy with my work that I could no longer take care of them.

    so I decided not to have a dog if I can not take care of him as a dog is not a pet he is part of family who trusts you with his life. I don’t like a lot of people, but I have never met a dog I have not liked 🙂 simple.

    • You have done right, Prasad. If you don’t have the time, space or love to give to a dog then don’t get one. Glad to find a dog lover in you!

  3. Uh oh – dogs are not for me. In fact I’m not much of a pet person at all. I don’t doubt that they’re cute and warm and fun but the chores that come along with them, the hair and the smell… that’s not my thing. Also, when you go travelling you have find them a place to stay. Just too much trouble. But there really is no excuse for people to get them and then not care for them. That’s downright cruel. The kids are beginning to plead for a dog but the husband and I are standing firm, yet.

    • I can understand, Tulika. I know a lot of people who do not like dogs. That is perfectly fine. All the associated responsibilities feel like trouble only when we don’t love dogs. 🙂 Just make sure you don’t give in to the pressure and get a dog home. Tell the kids to find a gentle dog at the neighbor’s and play with them.

  4. We’ve had dogs in the past when we lived in an independent house, but later, moved so much that we simply adopted the neighbor’s pet 🙂 My great grandmother had dogs, a cat, a snake, a horse and a donkey on our estate.

    Yes, I’ve seen dog owners being mean, both to people and their pets. One such had a Doberman and kept the poor thing tied all day on the terrace and he would bark his head off. My Mom used to pull them up every day, I remember, until the owner reluctantly took him for a walk.

    Pets are indeed part of the family. I’ve had the pleasure of enjoying my friends’ pets – my best friend had 3 dogs and I cannot remember a day when I visited her and sat alone on the sofa – we were always a pile! 🙂 People who don’t care about caring have no right to keep pets.

    • Yes, that part too, Vidya. These dogs will incessantly bark disturbing neighbors. Your mother did good. Some of the pet owners are really ill mannered — not picking up after their dog and squabbling with those who say anything. But those who bring a dog home and ill treat the poor animal have my deepest contempt. Like you say, they have no right to keep a pet.

  5. Lovely post, Rachna! I totally agree with your viewpoint.if you take care of them, don’t bring them home. What unconditional love and loyalty. Play a little with them, feed them and take care of them and they love you forever.
    I have a dog, Angel and a cat, Crookshanks. Don’t know what my life would be without them 🙂

    • I completely agree, Kamini. How little we do for them and how much they give us back especially the adoration and love. Just being around them perks your mood. Love to your babies.

  6. One of the first few arrests I did was cruelty to Dog, and I got a certificate for that from the animal people 🙂 I HATE those who cant be bothetred to look after a Dog, I use to have half a dozen when i was in india.

    In uk I got settled and got myself a dog from the RSPCA but within a week I gave it back because I felt I was not being able to give him time and keeping him happy as i was working all the time and I was being cruel to him seeing him for only a few hours.


    • Good work, Bikram. So happy you did that. I can imagine why you were unable to keep the dog. At least you returned it when you realized it. Wish we could get owners arrested here as well. But that is wishful thinking at least for now.

  7. I have seen people on the streets being really kind to street dogs…They would have scarcely to eat and yet they would share a small portion with their pet which just shares the street with them…As for the better privileged ones, you are absolutely right…One does need to have some responsibility before bringing in a pet . My brother got bitten by our neighbors German Shepherd when he was a kid. Though we both and my mother were animal lovers, my dad was never comfortable with the idea of having a dog around after that incident

    • Yes, you are right. Some are really kind to the strays. I can imagine why your dad was uncomfortable. I think it is a personal choice whether to get a pet home or not. But at least the choice must be made prudently and should not harm the animal.

  8. My husband grew up with dogs and my daughter loves dogs. She will stop and pet any dog that she comes across. She simply adores them. I like dogs too but I am not sure if I can take care of it in an apartment complex, to be honest. I find many here that are tied up in the verandah and left alone.I feel terrible for them. What a way to live!

    Husband also said it didn’t make sense to torture the dog since big dogs need space to run around energetically and that they are a huge responsibility. I agree that it is a decision that must be taken jointly and not lightly. In awe of those who take such good care of their pets of course 🙂

    • I have noticed that most kids by nature love dogs unless some dog has chased them. I completely understand what you feel, Shy. Big dogs must never be kept in apartments as they need a lot of exercise. And tying a dog is really bad. I think you are doing right by not getting one. Besides, it is quite a bit of work at least initially. Being a dog lover, I can’t imagine not having a dog or as I say my most well behaved son. 😉 As cliched as it may sound, they really give back manifolds compared to what we invest in them. It is such a great feeling to head home just because of the welcome this boy gives me. 😀 Okay, I can write for hours about him. 😉

  9. I’m afraid of dogs. Just me and dogs don’t go together.

  10. I am not a pet lover, but I like dogs. S can’t stand them in the house. The kids want one, but I am not ready for a third kid. I am pretty sure they won’t clean the poop or take them for a walk. My Indian friends who have pets have warned that it is not easy. So, No for now. In India, though the situation is changing but dogs are mostly treated as watch guards for the house. That is why, many people tie them outdoors. Here, I know of an incident where an Indian went to buy a pet because of the son’s continuous nagging. The pet store asked him, where will you keep it? He replied: Outside. They refused to sell the pup to him as he didn’t mention indoors.

    • But how can anyone tie their dogs? And that too outside the house or apartment. It is crazy stupid. I am so proud of that pet store that refused to sell a pup. I wish there was a regulation which would punish such dog owners. I feel so angry when I see this behaviour.

  11. So true Rachna. Dogs become part of the family. I don’t know how anyone can treat them otherwise. Very sad.

  12. Oh, well, I don’t really want pets and Shobhit is the same..As a child too I was never inclined towards one..But you are right, it needs to be a joint decision and it is bad to not treat pets properly once you have decided to bring them home

    • Then you guys are sorted till M starts pestering you. 😀 The problem is mostly when one spouse is a dog lover and the other is not. I guess they bring the dog home thinking that the other may begin to love one. And the dog often bears the brunt of the wrong decision. 🙁

  13. I am scared of dogs. 2 times in my life them made me run for life!! Cant forgive the species. 😀 hehe. but my kids recently are asking for pup, like they will take care of it. So its a big NO (yet)

  14. I am scared of dogs. 2 times in my life them made me run for life!! Cant forgive the species. ? hehe. but my kids recently are asking for pup, like they will take care of it. So its a big NO (yet)

  15. I absolutely agree… Bringing a pup is a responsibility that every one in the family should be willing to take up. I also feel that kids become more empathic when they start taking care of pets since childhood. We always had a dog around us while growing up and never was a day when we left him alone at home… we used to either cancel our plans or hire a help to stay overnight for our pet.
    To feel the love of a dog is a beautiful thing!!

  16. When I was a child, I really loved puppies but my parents were really adamant on not getting one for me. Later, I became quite okay with them. Neither adulation, nor hatred, simply neutral. And then I married A.. And he is crazy about dogs.. Simply CRAZY! I wasn’t very comfortable with the idea of getting a dog first, but when he got him, it kind of became a part of our lives, member of our family. I love spending time with him (sometime, not 24*7), but his needs are properly taken care of… I haven’t realized how much important he has become for all of us in the family 🙂

    I loved your take in this post. I see people, having a pet (owning them) and then leaving it for days when they are out on vacations while their munchkin is all alone, with no one around. I really find is inhuman..

    I wish people can become sensible owners..

  17. I have not seen such pet owners but have seen many many loving ones who treat their pets as their children. We had once adopted a stray, a mixed breed with boxer blood and the little thing was so frisky that I was unable to handle him. I had done a series of posts on this experience and how heartbreaking it had been to give him away. Yes, pets should be brought home only after careful consideration. But knowing how even children are brought into the world without knowing what it would entail in terms of time and effort to bring them up, I am not surprised that there are such pet owners too.

    • I am glad that you have seen more pet lovers. I have seen that many pet lovers don’t keep pets properly. They will not pick up after them if they litter. They won’t give them the required exercise or leave them alone for hours. I think giving the pet away to a loving family was a good thing to do on your part. Some people just let a pet loose on the streets. Imagine that! How is a pet going to survive among strays? The callousness that I’ve seen makes me so sad and angry. And in our gated community, some people just buy them as if they are glorified stuffed toys for their entertainment, caring hardly anything for the pet’s wellbeing.

  18. Agree with each and every word Rachna. You are very correct when you say that people, if they are not 100% sure, shouldnt get dogs and then later subject them to harassment or abandon them. I have lost count of the innumerable times, me and my husband have had this discussion and inspite of all of us being dog lovers, havent got one mainly because we stay in the apartment and there’s the problem of taking care of them when nobody’s home for long periods is a big problem.

    • Absolutely, Asha. I am glad that you’ve considered all aspects and decided not to bring a dog home. I think it is just not right by them to be subject to apathy and long periods of isolation along with no exercise and fun. It is cruel. Thanks for dropping by.

  19. We’ve always had dogs and now it’s Bella! Coincidentally I just did a post on her two three days back for the gratitude circle. Do read when you can make time ?

  20. Rahul on March 3, 2016 at 12:33 pm said:

    Dogs are indeed the best companions and stress busters!

Do not leave without commenting. I love a good conversation :).

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