We all know people who say that they are dog lovers; they may have a dog, or two, may like to pet an occasional dog, or might even take their dog to the dog park, every now and then. They can sometimes join a local dog training group, like a basic obedience dog training class at the local community center, or even sign up for training lessons at Petco. You can talk to them about dogs and they have basic knowledge and understanding on caring for them. I get along well with this group of people but have to be careful as to what sort of doggie related information I share because their eyes can gloss over a bit if it’s too deep. They might do a little research before deciding which breed of dog to get but they generally fall for the cute pup in the box outside their local drug store.

Then, you have true dog lovers! These people eat, sleep, and breathe dog. We always have dog hair, all over our clothes, in our vehicles, and sometimes even in our coffee. We research foods, parks, beaches, and toys that will make our fur-babies the happiest and most fulfilled. They ask about different training techniques, try different leashes and collars, and look for any excuse to take their dogs into public. The majority of this group understands the importance of good diet, nutrition, and exercise and completely understands that there is different requirements and recommendations for different breeds. It is a dog researching opportunity so they are all in! These people teach their dogs how to obey, do tricks, and walk without a leash. These people are who I write this blog for. We are the over-the-top, crazy dog lovers, and that sets us in a category all of our own. I can have the best conversations with these people because they understand when I tell them that I just spent two hours vacuuming sand out of my car because I had taken the dogs to the beach the week before. They also understand the reasons I have a mini-van as it is much easier to transport my pups places as they have plenty of room. (Seriously, I bought my mini-van because I didn’t like the dogs crowding each other on the back seat of my car.) These are my people and I am proud to have them!

With all of that being said, and all of the differences being laid out, please understand that I do not judge either side. I do think it’s a little strange when I meet people who “don’t like dogs” because to me, that simply isn’t logical. Fortunately, we run out of things to talk about, relatively quickly, so I don’t spend a whole lot of time with that crowd.

Do you think that we are born this way or do you think these are learned traits? I could go both ways on this topic because I had both examples in my life. On my mom’s side, they had no pets, not even a goldfish. The majority of my aunts and uncle, on that side, have had very few, if any, pets throughout the years. My mom’s first dog was the firehouse pup she got me when I was six years old. Then, there was my dad’s side; my grandparents lived on a ranch and had all sorts of animals. Even after they sold the ranch, they always had dogs and cats around. To this day, at the age of ninety, my grandmother has her dog, Ruth, and an assortment of wild birds and raccoons that she feeds daily. In fact, you know when it is three o’clock because she has a crow that sits on the rail of her balcony and caws at her until she takes him a piece of bread. It’s quite funny, actually. The cousins that I have on that side are much more like me; we can talk dogs and horses, literally for hours and never grow tired of it. It is like a second language to us…maybe even a first. So, where did my deep love and respect for the four-legged’s come from? I don’t know. I can’t say that is it a hundred percent upbringing because my mom raised me, as my dad passed away when I was just two-years-old. So, here’s what I think; I think that it is in our hearts, when we come into this world. It’s part of the diverseness that makes this world so awe inspiring and beautiful. Sure, it can be nurtured and encouraged by our outside influences, but I don’t think that it can truly be extinguished, not if we are one of the lucky few who are truly born with a love like this.

My point? The guess is that all of you, who read my blogs, are the “true dog lovers”, and I wanted to make sure that you knew that you are not alone. I am here for you. I am here for your family and friends who need support and who seek answers. I research and learn new things every-single-day. I love to talk about dogs, I love to hear about dogs, and I love to help dogs. With that being said, I would really like for you to share your dog with me. You can share as much or as little as you’d like, but please share! Simply comment with your dog’s story and maybe even a picture. I look forward to meeting you and your fur-bestie.

Many blessings to you and your four-legged-love ~ Tammy

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