The Top Five: Why People Should Live Like Dogs

I am not a pet owner but my family has always had dogs. My favorite will always be our childhood pet, a Shepherd/Husky mix named Aster. She was THE BEST!  Today though my parents have an adorable black Cocker Spaniel named Sammie. In watching him the last couple of months, it has occurred to me that people should live like dogs.


#1 – You can sleep anywhere, anyway and at anytime

I don’t know about you but the older I get the harder I find it to just sleep on my own terms. Think about the gloriousness of sleeping at any moment, any where you chose, in any crazy way.  Sleep is so important for our bodies to function properly and yet we live deprived. With all of our media, thoughts and general wacky schedules it gets tougher and tougher to do.

Sammie sleeps on his back, upside down, twisted into a ball, in other weird ways and in the midst of blaring movies, news reports and other activities taking place around him.  Maybe if we were like dogs, we would be able to tune out the noise, shut off our minds and actually unplug and rest!

#2 – You appreciate any and all gifts

Have you ever seen a dog look at you like you aren’t some magical entity descended from the heavens when you hand them a treat? It could be a bone, a new toy or a tissue (used or unused) and they freak out!! OH MY WORD!!!! IT’S FOR ME!!! THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!

How cool and happy would our lives be if we became like dogs with our appreciation?  I guarantee the gift giver would feel the blessing too. There would be no more question as to where we stood on their gift. And even the meaningless random item we encounter that day (like the aforementioned tissue) would become like gold to us.

#3 – You forget easily

Dogs don’t seem to have much of a memory. You can walk out of the room for 10 minutes and when you come back they will attack you with excitement to see you. Or, shove them out of your spot on the couch while they are sleeping (which is rude – I mean you wouldn’t do this to your kid) and they will jump back up and snuggle on your lap.

In living like dogs, maybe we can forget the piddly stuff others do to us with the same level of ease. Exercise forgiveness instead of harboring the small stuff that grows bitter, resentful roots.

#4 – You would express your excitement to the world

One things dogs don’t do is leave you hanging. Talk to them sweetly, watch their tail wag. Pick up a ball, they come to attention ready to pounce. Garage door goes up and they start to wail – they can’t WAIT to see you. They’ll lick you to death to share their affection, too.

We are so bent as humans to guard our emotions from the world. It’s like if we show our cards then someone will take advantage of even a basic smile. Can you imagine how radical our relationships would change if we became honest in our excitement and expressing our emotions? If we actually put feet on the words “I love you” to our kids or significant other?  Pretty cool. Or, even simply just allowed ourselves to enjoy the little things in life.

#5 – You would love your people

Dogs are loyal aren’t they? And, protective too. They LOVE their people. How come we don’t love our people like that? Humans have become so ridiculously self-serving that the truest meaning of love is typically not an action we are familiar with any more.

Think about the family gatherings and holiday meals that could be so much less tense and more genuinely loving, if we acted like dogs.


No doubt animals in general have cool behaviors. Some really weird, too. Observe sometime and see what you are missing out on. There may be a lesson you can apply to your own life.




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