While growing up I had lots of dogs. We had run around the yard dogs, strays that we would bring home and then of course my daddy had hunting dogs. When I think back to the barking sounds that those old hound dogs used to make, it reminds me of my childhood. Those old hounds had beautiful voices. Having grown up with dogs all my life I understand how important they are to families.
I know that my Dixie is a member of this family. I always tell people that she is my fur baby, my middle child. I can imagine what our lives would be like without her. I recently saw a story on the news about how pets have a positive influence on our lives, so I decided to do a little research on it.The following website, http://www.helpguide.org/articles/emotional-health/the-health-benefits-of-pets.htm, has as list of ways that pets contribute to our health and well being. I however don't need a study to prove that our Dixie is good for us, all I have to do is look back over the last 10 years she has been part of our family to see the influence she has had.
Here are just a few ways she has helped us:
1. Protection: She always lets me know when someone pulls into the driveway or is at the door. It is good to know that she is always ready to warn us of something that she feels is dangerous.
2. Friendship: I have to say that she is my friend. She always listens to me and never talks back. Of course a person needs human friends, but it is so nice to have a friend that will just listen, sometimes that is exactly what you need.
3. Exercise: Many days we spend time outside throwing the tennis ball for her and watching her chase it, she never brings it back so the kids have to chase her, that gives them lots of exercise. She also tags along with me when I go walking in the evenings. It is nice to have her tag along and enjoy the outside with me.
4. Unconditional Love: She loves me with an unconditional love, but sometimes I have to scold her. Like the other night when she stole a Twix candy bar and ate it. Her face was priceless! She knew she was in trouble, but she looked so pitiful up at me, I just had to laugh. Sometimes she can be plum aggravating too. She follows me everywhere, sticking her nose under the bedroom or bathroom door waiting for me to come out. It is nice though to know how much she loves me and just wants to be near me.
5. Comfort: This one is most likely the one thing she does that helps the most. I remember how she stayed right by my side after each miscarriage, how she was right with me when my grandfather passed away. How she stayed close to my daughter when she was going through her cancer treatments. Each time she was there to offer comfort to us the only way she knew how. She would just snuggle up to us and lay close, just letting us know she was there.
Of course she is getting older, her hearing is not as good, her eyesight is starting to fade, she sleeps a lot more than she used too and she is not as fast as she once was, (she is 10 in dog years and 70 in human years.) but she is still very important to us. As I sit here on the couch typing this blog she is curled up right next to me. She is keeping her eye out for her family, giving us love and keeping us heathly. What more could we ask for? She is by far the best dog ever.
"That's my 'two-cents worth', what's yours?"