One of the best things about dogs is that they are completely incapable of cruelty, prejudice or judgment. They ignore superficial characteristics and see right through to the heart of a person. We spend so much time and effort training our dogs, but maybe we should spend a little of that time observing them instead. When it comes to love and acceptance, there is so much they have to teach us.
- 1. Look Within Before You Judge
When dogs meet for the first time the variations between their breed, size, coloring and physical traits mean nothing. They never size each other up to determine who is richer, smarter or better looking. They simply try to determine if their personalities are a good fit. If they don’t make a good playtime pair it’s based on compatibility, never anything superficial.
2. Wear Your Heart On Your Sleeve
You never have to wonder where you stand with a dog. Whether they love you or hate you, you’re going to know it pretty quick! Humans try to protect themselves by playing complex emotional games with one another. Dogs are completely honest when it comes to their feelings. No matter what they have been through in their past, they are willing to offer a blank slate because they understand that love is the most important thing.
3. Never Willfully Cause Pain
It’s normal for humans to retaliate when they are feeling hurt or vulnerable. We lash out at the one who caused us pain, or even at an innocent friend or loved one. Sometimes it just feels good to drag someone else down to our level. Our canine companions never feel this willful need to hurt back. Just check out the stories of abused, neglected pups who remain loyal to their abusers or shower their rescuers with unabashed affection.
4. Never Let A Good Friend Cry Alone
Have you ever noticed that your dog is incapable of seeing you cry without trying to cheer you up? My little mystery mutt actually forces his head between my face and hands in order to smother me with kisses. Once I make eye contact he wags his tail furiously and leaps into my lap. How’s a girl supposed to feel sorry for herself with that going on?
5. Make Love, Not War
Our dogs hate to see us fight with one another, or Dog forbid, get physical. Even playful wrestling or tickle fights can be misconstrued as an altercation by our fuzzbutts. Some may cry out or cower, others will leap between you to break it up. Pups want everyone they love to love each other, too.
6. All You Need Is Love
Dogs don’t care where you live or how much your car cost. All they ask is a place to sleep, food in their belly and a pair of loving arms to hold them. They just seem to know that the important things in life can’t be bought.
7. Never Judge
Bad haircut? Packing on a few extra pounds? Your dog couldn’t care less. Our appearance has nothing to do with why they love us. They’re never going to leave us for a younger woman or buy us a gym membership for our birthday. This is one of the reasons they make such incredibly effective therapy dogs. Pups look past injuries, disabilities, insecurities and flaws to give confidence building companionship to people in need.
8. Be Amazing Caregivers
Dogs have uncanny abilities to sense illness, and respond in amazing ways. We’ve all heard the stories of dogs sniffing out their owners’ cancer, or alerting them to an impending seizure. But even more important than this, they are there for us emotionally. Dogs are happy to sit vigilantly by our sick beds and offer the comforting cuddles we need no matter what our ailment may be.
9. Never Feel Sorry For Yourself
It can be so easy to feel like the world is against us when we lose out on a promotion or the washing machine goes on the fritz again. Sometimes it’s hard to keep in perspective just how lucky we are. Next time you feel like things couldn’t get worse, check out some videos of dogs who have overcome harrowing odds. From losing a limb or their sense of sight, to battling disease with grace, dogs never seem to give up. No matter what life throws them, they just deal with it and move on.
10. Choose Love Every Time
When dog lovers think of the word loyalty, they probably can’t help but picture their faithful canine. That’s because they give new meaning to the word. Chances are you are the one who went out and found your pup to begin with, but now that you are together, it’s for life. You may go through many stressful changes like financial strife, illness, or tragedy. No matter what, you can rest assured that your dog is going to stick by your side. In a world where nothing else is guaranteed, that’s a pretty comforting thought.
featured image via Flickr