Whole Dog Journal's Blog December 8, 2016

How Would Your Dog Rate You?

Posted at 05:20AM - Comments: (13)

I recently saw a video on Facebook that was titled, “How Moms Think of Themselves Versus How Their Kids Think of Them.” It was a tad treacly, but bear with me for a moment.

In the video, mothers were being interviewed one at a time, and asked, “How would you describe yourself as a mom?”

All of them gave themselves fairly harsh assessments.

“I struggle with my temper.”

“I wish I had more patience.”

And even, “There are days I have my doubts about my abilities as a mother.”

Then their children were interviewed and asked about their moms.

“I have a lot of favorite things about my mom…”

“My mom is totally awesome…”

“She loves me a lot…”

“My mom is the best!”

I guess I’m far enough past parenting a small child and so overrun with dogs, that I immediately imagined a similar scenario with dogs in it. If only we could interview our dogs!

I know what mine would say!

“She takes us for great walks! She gets us so many toys! We always have good food, and great treats! We get to sleep in the house, and on the couch!”

Couch dogs (dog couch in my office)

But I also know that I would probably describe myself in a similar fashion to those moms.

“I would love to do something like agility with them, but I just can’t seem to make the time to train.”

“Sometimes, when I see some new thing Woody has chewed up, I snap and yell, even if it’s really my own fault that he had the opportunity to snatch it.”

“I feel that I let Otto down by taking on foster dogs.”

I know that the makers of the “mom” video had a pre-planned agenda: They were allowed to watch their children’s assessments of them, and made to realize that no matter what they think of their own shortcomings as parents, their children really do appreciate everything they do for them.

I don’t know that our dogs can feel exactly the same type of conscious appreciation of us that our children can … but it made me wonder.

How would you describe yourself as a dog owner?

And how would your dog describe you as his or her owner?

Comments (13)

My human is not very much fun lately. She says it's too dark and slippery to go for a walk when she gets home, and she's too busy with Christmas to even throw the ball for me. Sometimes when she sits down to put on her shoes she'll throw a toy for me, but only if I bark at her to say, "Stay sitting down!" while I go fetch it. She almost forgot to share a blueberry with me this morning, and I have to remind her to think about what she's doing when she brushes my teeth before she goes away most days. All I want to do is play Frisbee in the yard or go for a walk. I hope she starts to be fun again soon.

Posted by: septembermary | December 19, 2016 11:36 AM    Report this comment

Hi, I'm Michael. I'm an English Springer Spaniel and I'll be twelve years old in May of 2017. I've only known my Mom as my Mom (except for my birth Mom and I hardly remember her now). My Mom is so much smarter about dogs since she picked me out, its just unbelievable! I went to Puppy classes and Intermediate and I even went to Obedience and Agility. Now that was fun. I jumped through that tire first thing! When she's not walking me, brushing me or taking me to my weekly Dog Swim Therapy she's researching everything for me. I've had so many bird toys you can't even imagine. I know she loves me a lot cuz she rakes up a big pile of leaves in the fall for me to jump in and she shovels a path all around the back yard for me when it snows deep so I can get around. What more could I ask for? Now that she's retired I get a lot of in the house time - whichever room she's in I'm right there. I'm not allowed on the living room furniture but I have my own Serta bed plus Mom helps me up on her bed at night - its already warmed up somehow. I fall right to sleep. I love my Mom.

Posted by: Mike's Mom | December 9, 2016 1:06 PM    Report this comment

I foster little dogs who have been severely neglected and/or abused. Casper is my most recent foster. It was very hard for him to learn human hands are for loving - not hitting. I think Casper would say he has learned to love me, love my kind touch, sleeping curled up next me, our play time and play time with his doggie friends, walks, learning tricks, getting treats and loves my home cooking which was hand fed at first because he had starved for so long and was dying. He has learned to trust me because he almost lost an eye and I cared for it - even though he tried to bite but, he can see now. He knows I will never hurt him and I won't let anyone else ever hurt him again. Casper is a "Foster Failure" and knows he is in his forever home. You see, I feel exactly the same way about my little Casper. Because he was used as "bait" I will not be taking any more fosters. Strange dogs frighten him. Casper is a 5 pound Maltese who will reach 7 pounds. He weighed a little over one pound when he was rescued.

Posted by: Casper'sMom | December 9, 2016 9:03 AM    Report this comment

As a dog mom, I think my dogs would say, "Well, I get to go everywhere Momma goes. We go some really awesome places. I don't really care for airplanes but when we get somewhere it's great. We went someplace called Grand Canyon and Momma said she brought one dog here to train her to pull Momma's wheelchair. I hear people ask if she learned. Momma's response is 'well, I'm still here so she didn't pull me off a cliff'. I have lots of fun but some days are hard cuz we both are getting older and Momma and I rest together on my couch."

Posted by: Mineehaha | December 9, 2016 7:26 AM    Report this comment

It would depend on the day.....if you asked them lately, they would say that I am a distant and uninvolved mom.....which would be true because of my holiday work commitments that keep me working long, long hours this holiday season. Most of the time, I am the fun mommy that does things with my dogs. People have commented that my dogs would crawl into my skin if they could figure out a way to do it so I am a pretty good dog mom.

Posted by: Mel Blacke | December 9, 2016 4:10 AM    Report this comment

I dunno. I think I am a good owner for my current dogs. I think they also think I'm pretty good. They keep telling me I am, anyway :-)
As for being a mother, I think I, like my Mum before me, did as well as I could, sometimes in difficult circumstances. Three of my kids tell me I was a good Mum -- the fourth blames me for ????? I dunno-- not standing up for him against his father? Though he told be that IF I divorced his father then he would have nothing more to do with me because I was too weak to 'keep a man'. We get on better now -- for short periods.

Posted by: Jenny H | December 9, 2016 1:45 AM    Report this comment

I think my dogs would say I spend a lot of time serving them food (after I cook it) and that I spend a lot of time playing with them and cuddling them (I am retired)...they would also complain that I am always bringing home dogs (I foster dogs with a group who takes dogs out of our local kill shelter). I do feel guilty about fostering dogs and taking time away from my dogs....BUT my dogs are all rescued dogs who needed a place to lay their heads....so I keep fostering....because I know how wonderful dogs are!!!!

Posted by: Olivia | December 8, 2016 7:10 PM    Report this comment

I know the feeling , I have a part Ridgeback whose fur when he is excieted looks like a kid with a Mohawk I think seeing the fur up makes people nervous . But Socks loves everyone and can't wait to show them the attention in the only way he knows , we have been working with him and he is starting to come around a bit , we love him and our other two and try to treat them all like the family members that they are !

Posted by: Jerry Mann | December 8, 2016 1:55 PM    Report this comment

Nacho the LONG HAIRED GSD mix would say, "Seven years ago I was skinny, smelly, matted and scared. I was afraid of sticks and brooms. I was abandoned on the street and had to fend for myself. I finally ended up in the yard of a small business. The owner of the business wasn't a big animal lover but he fed me and gave me shelter. His wife made him take me on a 5 hour car trip to their house. Now I have a warm bed, training, 2 acres to roam, toys, great food (I get a fresh egg from the chickens every day!), a groomer, Layla the Lab for my best buddy, and lots of love! My mom is the bestest!"

Posted by: chicken lady | December 8, 2016 12:44 PM    Report this comment

If my labradors greetings are an indication of how my husband and I are doing as parents... then we are absolutely amazing! Top Shelf! Couldn't be better! Hope she really thinks we are doing ok and isn't just doing that Lab thing. :)

Posted by: zsazsa10 | December 8, 2016 10:57 AM    Report this comment

Wookee would think I was the best friend he could have. 3 Walks a day, lots of toys, massages, playdates w friends and twice a month day playcare!! He gets lots of health care and love and gives me so much joy to watch him loving life. I think I'd get a 10 plus!!!

Posted by: Wookee | December 8, 2016 10:32 AM    Report this comment

I think I am a good dog owner- conscientious, feed good food, make meal times interesting w/ treat toys, take him for walks. BUT I wish I would have the time to train more, try some nose work, agility, something Scout our Standard Schnauzer would have fun at & challenge him mentally & physically.
I think Scout would say he thinks I'm pretty good-but would like more of my time & attention. (I work). I think he likes the farm life. He probably wishes the grand kids came over more to play with him!

Posted by: joanne.c | December 8, 2016 9:40 AM    Report this comment

George and I are best friends. He hogs my attention from Kaiti the blue heeler. I have to lift all 70 lbs of him onto the bed at night.He is learning to come inside when I whistle to the dogs.
But he still jumps up when my youngest daughter or my brother comes to the house.he is so happy to see them.

Posted by: George | December 8, 2016 8:35 AM    Report this comment

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