I can’t count how many times I’ve heard that owning a dog is good for your health. I’ve always assumed that was because of the unconditional love they give. They’re always there for you. They’re loyal and loving beyond words. They make you laugh. They’re part of the family, and all that other unicorns and glitter stuff. Then for some reason today, I searched “benefits of owning a dog.” I could not believe the number of returns I got. Bing came back with 7.1 million results; Google came back with 788,000. I know, big difference; I thought it was weird too, but either way that’s a ton! It got me wondering about benefits that Marc and I get from having our crew; and not just health benefits but in all aspects of our lives.
After thinking about it, I realized we get a lot of benefits from our group. I mean we have what seems to be 2,000 toys all over the floor. At times it makes me crazy so I put them in a pile that’s not in the middle of the floor. That’s exercise! They tear things up in the yard; more exercise from cleaning it up. They poop, a lot! You guessed it, exercise when cleaning it up. They tear the stuffing out of their toys. Which anyone with dogs knows, that makes a huge mess. Again, exercising. I mean you can laugh but cleaning those things up consists of squats, yoga type bending, walking, and sometimes running (when they take off with stuff). How incredible is it that they give us exercise? Our dogs are amazing.
Another area we benefit is having a regular sleep schedule rather than sleeping late. I can go to bed at 6 a.m. but, our dogs know I shouldn’t sleep all day. They are so thoughtful that they wake me between 8 and 9. No matter how aggravated I get, no matter how frustrated they see me getting, they just keep trying to get me out of bed. They’ll jump on me, bark at me, lay on the bed and box me with their paws, lick my face, whatever is needed. They love me so much that they don’t care how long it takes or if it takes a couple of them to do it. They stick with it until I’m out of bed. Now that’s not only diligence, that’s some major consideration as well.
Another benefit is their ability to tell time and to let you know what time it is; yet they don’t even talk. That’s talent. If I didn’t wear a watch or had no access to clocks, I would at least know the correct time twice per day. It doesn’t matter what’s going on at our house, our crew knows when it’s time to eat. It uncanny. How do they know when it’s 4 a.m. and time for breakfast and 4 p.m. and time for dinner? I just don’t get it but like I said, it’s a benefit for us too. Let’s say Marc and I are in the middle of doing something around the house. It could be simple like vacuuming or something a little more involved like replacing the sprinkler system. No matter what it is, they come nudge us to let us know it’s time to eat. If we don’t stop what we’re doing and feed them then the nudges get more violent. If we’re not careful, a nudge can send us on our butt. But, they’re not being obnoxious; they’re just trying to tell us what time it is. Thoughtful? I think so.
There are a few benefits that hinge on each other. Some things in the house are up higher, everything has a place and is usually in it, the house gets cleaned often, and there’s the toilet thing. Yea you’ll have to wait on that one. Anyway, things like the remote control, DVDs, computer mice, and books are placed high so the dogs don’t play with them. This also means that things are usually where they belong. This means less clutter too. The reason those things are a ginormous help to me is because my back is bad but now I don’t have to bend! In reference to the toilet (I know you’ve been waiting for this), it’s been years since I sat down, felt like I was going to keep falling only to have my ass hit water that’s so cold it feels like it was piped in from the North Pole. All of this simply because the seat was left up. So very sorry about the visual. How do the dogs keep this from happening you ask? I’ll tell you. If the lid is up, the dogs drink the water. That means water on the seat and floor and no one likes stepping and or sitting in toilet water. Therefore, the lid has to get put down which of course means the seat gets put down too. Victory! How fantastic is that? It’s just incredible to me how wonderful and caring our dogs are.
It’s really crazy to me that our dogs are so very considerate. I always knew they did stuff for us like warm the bed up, make me laugh, and hang with me when I have a bad day. I just didn’t realize how many things they do for us and how many benefits we truly get from them. To me though, the absolute greatest benefit they give me is the toilet situation. Ok, maybe not the greatest but definitely in the top three.