Thursday, April 28, 2011

Just a ________?...

Recently, a blogger that I follow had an interesting post.  She was away from home for a while, and, while she was gone (or maybe before, I'm not sure), her cat became pregnant.  Many comments flew through blog-o-sphere, some nice, some....well.....let's just say that "venomous" could be an accurate description.  Some people were genuinely concerned about what they perceived to be "irresponsibility" on the bloggers part for not having the cat spayed and I understand where they are coming from.  While I do understand, I don't agree with the nasty comments.  People are entitled to their own opinions, whether I agree with them or not, but everyone should be respectful when discussing opinions.  Normally I don't get involved in commenting on posts or nasty comments for no other reason than I don't want any venom directed at me.  That is, until I read the post.

I am firmly in the "animal lover" camp.  I am not, however, a vegetarian (I love me some beef!), nor do I particularly like cats.  Actually, I don't like cats at all.  I do love dogs, though, and my fur was ruffled as I read through the comments left on the blog post.  Understand, while I do not share the attitude of the blogger, I do completely respect her opinion and her right to blog about it on her blog.  What I do not respect, though, are the insulting comments left to people who disagree with the "It's Just a (insert your pet here)" statement.

Disclaimer:  no one left a hateful comment to me and I do not respect commentors who share my opinion but are rude about it.

One commentor even went so far as to imply that individuals who were "for" animal rights must also be "for" aborting babies.  Hmmmmm.  Really?  That's quite a jump in reasoning, don't you think?  I think all animals (yes, even cats) should be treated humanely and I am against abortion.

My comment was respectful.  I stated how I felt about my sweet girl.  The person who responded was also respectful and I appreciated that.  I was in no way looking to get into a fight.  She left a question thatI am sure she thought made her point, though:  If I had the choice between saving a three-year old or my dog....I am sure that, to her, the choice is clear.  To me?  Well, I don't have children.  If I did, I would sacrifice myself to save both before I would let something happen to either.  I can not imagine the horrendous guilt I would feel if something happened to raven and I didn't do everything in my power to save her.  You see, she is always happy to see me, has never talked about me or stabbed me in the back, and has been more loyal to me that some "friends" I have had in my life.  I know that, without a doubt, my little Chihuahua would give her life to protect me.  So no, she is not "just" a dog.

The following is not mine and I am not sure where it originated.  I am not claiming it as my own but I think it sums up my feelings well:
From time to time, people tell me, "lighten up, it's just a dog," or, "that's a lot of money for just a dog."  They don't understand the distance traveled, the time spent, or the costs involved for "just a dog."   Some of my proudest moments have come about with "just a dog."  Many hours have passed and my only company was "just a dog," but I did not once feel slighted.  Some of my saddest moments have been brought about by "just a dog," and in those days of darkness, the gentle touch of "just a dog" gave me comfort and reason to overcome the day.
If you, too, think it's "just a dog," then you will probably understand phrases like "just a friend," "just a sunrise," or "just a promise."  "Just a dog" brings into my life the very essence of friendship, trust, and pure unbridled joy.  "Just a dog" brings out the compassion and patience that make me a better person.  Because of "just a dog" I will rise early, take long walks, and look longingly to the future.  So for me and folks like me, it's not "just a dog" but an embodiment of all the hopes and dreams of the future, the fond memories of the past, and the pure joy of the moment.  "Just a dog" brings out what's good in me and diverts my thoughts away from myself and the worries of the day.
I hope that someday they can understand that it's not "just a dog" but the thing that gives me humanity and keeps me from being "just a man."  So the next time you hear the phrase "just a dog," just smile because they "just don't understand."


  1. Well said BFF!

  2. Sadly for some people they don't understand the unconditional love of a pet, especially a dog. I think Sigmond Freud said it best when he said: "Dogs love their friends and bite their enemies, quite unlike people, who are incapable of pure love and always have to mix love and hate."