All of life’s lessons can be learned at the dog park. Having watched my big old dog Brutus interact with some of his peers at our local dog park, I can see a lot of truth there. Here are some of the lessons, he/ I have observed:
- A wagging tail will get a better response than growling teeth.
- You have to clean up your own crap. No one else will do it for you. It is the responsible thing to do. You can pretend the crap didn’t happen but everyone knows it is your crap and thinks you are lame for not dealing with it.
- You have more fun in life when you are off leash than when you are on.
- Some dogs, no matter how hard you try to be nice, simply will not like you. Stop struggling to sniff their butt. Move on. It’s their loss.
- The other dog’s stick will always look more attractive than the stick you have in your mouth. If you take that dog’s stick, he will just take the one you dropped and then you will want that one. It is a vicious cycle to be avoided. Be happy with the stick that you have.
- Humping is fun at any time of the day.
- Some times you just have to eat things that are not good for you. Yes, that includes rotten dead squirrels.
- Barking will get you attention in the short run. In the long run it will get you banned from the dog park.
- There will always be dogs that can run faster than you. Use your brain and your experience to get the ball. If that doesn’t work, use your big barrel chest to bump the ball out of their mouth when no one is looking.
- Cats can never be trusted.
- Digging for dirt will get you in trouble.
- You can teach an old dog new tricks…except for fetch.
- Your true friends will want to play with you even after you have been skunked.
- Just because a dog is cute, it doesn’t mean he is nice. If he is wearing an pretentious outfit, it means you should pity him.
- The happiest dogs are the ones you want to hang out with the most.
- Play every day regardless of your age.
If I had been to the dog park earlier in life, most of the mistakes in my 20s would not have happened. Dogs are so wise.