Our dogs originally worked as guard dogs, herding dogs or hunting dogs, depending on their breed-specific characteristics. Most dogs nowadays work full-time as companion dogs, lapdogs or part-time as child substitute, because they are becoming more and more humanized by their owners.
Just like children, there is now almost everything available for dogs: clothes, toys, shoes, furniture and infinitely more. Over the last few decades, the dog as a working dog has become a money printing machine that needs to be promoted cleverly. Therefore, you are bombarded with advertising for dog products, which your furry roommate absolutely needs. Not. This is how needs are awakened and gradually begin to mutate grotesquely: we start to treat our pets like little children.
Small dogs are particularly affected by humanization. These are personified child substitutes and are dressed like dolls, carried in bags or permanently on the arms, pushed around in the dog buggy and have their food served on the table. I don't even want to get started on the little hoodies and sweaters that they are put into (also in a partner look with mommy).
But it's not just small dogs who suffer from this kind of pampering, the big ones aren't spared either. Even when they are puppies, some dogs are given such a complex schedule that it can make you sick. Mind you, at an age when everyday life would be exciting enough for the little pup.
For the adult dog there is dog dancing on Monday, agility on Tuesday, obedience on Wednesday, day off on Thursday, lunging on Friday, and then it's finally the weekend. Because the dog hasn't been properly exercised during the week, you take a lot of time on the weekend and take the dog to seminars, herding sheep and go on long hikes. So that the dog is really exercised. Not that it's still annoying at home...
Between the training and socialization appointments, there are of course various photo shoots - of course the dog is positioned like a Monchichi - because one needs more "super-cute content" on Instagram. There are dogs that already have social media profiles, even though they don't live with their owners yet because they are still attached to the teat of the bitch in the whelping box.
But it can still be more bizarre: dog children and dog parents can toast to football in front of the TV with dog-friendly beer or dog-crisps: non-alcoholic dog beer with chicken flavor is served, or popcorn with a hint of ham - at prices as if you were feeding gold nuggets. And because exuberant love apparently has a mentally retarding effect on dog owners, some clever shopkeepers are pushing the limits: Christmas calendars, birthday cakes, chocolates, overalls, hats, dog strollers, Halloween costumes and even wedding dresses for dogs. And bikinis. I didn't know that dogs had feelings of shame. Does the bikini top for the bitch actually have six cups?
Of course, just in time for Oktoberfest, the dog is forced into a dirndl and dressed up like a Whit ox. It's a shame they can't talk, otherwise you could probably hear Labradoodle Trixie saying: "You stupid idiot, take the fiddle and shove it somewhere else, I'm going to hunt cats!"
I have to see pictures of Wolfspitzes or Keeshonden in raincoats. It takes me ages with the shower until Kuno is wet to the skin, so why does a Wolfspitz need a raincoat? He hardly notices the rain with his thick, double-coated fur. Why do dogs need coats anyway? Except for old, very young and sick dogs, they get used to the cold and have no problem with it as long as they move. Or shoes: unless your dog is a sled dog in Alaska, he doesn't need shoes. Not even because of the clumps of snow. Dogs can actually pick them off themselves, yes, they are that viable!
By the way, dogs can also run. You don't have to push them around in the dog buggy, carry them or cart them behind you in the bike trailer, they have pretty well-functioning legs.
By the way, for a change, tie a flashing collar around your neck and go for a walk at night. See, and it's just as shitty for the dog. Until recently it wasn't common practice to light dogs - and yet they somehow survived the long nights of winter. There were also no options for attaching candles to the dog - although there was one, but okay.... 😜
I see people who bake their dogs cookies almost every day, of course in the shape of a heart or in the shape of little mermaids and of course beautifully colored, because the dog likes them so much. Sure, that’s definitely super important to him. By the way, many of the cookies are baked because the dog is only trained positively with treats and clicks. Nasty mouths would say that you are conditioning the dog like a primitive idiot and turning yourself into an automatic feeder, but nobody is nasty here. By the way, dogs are highly intelligent and able to learn socially - i.e. through understanding and insight.
Funnily enough, this hairclip-wearing, force-harnessed, flashing little doggy is then fed as if it were a completely wild, blood-drinking predator from prehistoric times: deer hooves with fur, blood pudding, innards that I didn't even know existed, or even a whole sheep's head. And for dessert, Mom gives us a home-baked XXL heart-shaped dog biscuit with “For my sweety” written on it in dog-friendly sugar writing.
I often hear about dogs refusing their harnesses. Please respect your dog's intelligence and his sense of self: if he doesn't want to wear a harness, he has his reasons. It is absolutely presumptuous - out of the irrational fear of destroying the dog's neck with a collar - to torture him into his hated harness every day. Plus, you're not doing yourself any favors with this well-intentioned tableware trend. The dog is much harder to hold because harnesses are designed to be pulled. I have seen mastiffs or Irish wolfhounds in harness several times; How in God's name do the owners want to keep the dog when it's on brass? Your own freedom regularly ends where the freedom of others is curtailed. Recently, a lady with two large Münsterlanders on a leash (both in harness, of course, what else) fell down the length of the busy main street because the dogs knocked her over. That could have been pretty damn obvious if she had let go of the leashes...
Especially for people who are lonely, the animal often has to serve as a substitute for human contact. But a dog is neither a replacement for children nor a partner, nor is it a piece of sports equipment, an accessory or even a fashion statement. A dog is a dog and remains a dog and doesn't give a shit about his Facebook profile because he wants to do his dog things. If you want to show your dog your respect, you must first acknowledge his canine needs.
The dog's needs also include rules that apply to him. If the dog knows who is the boss, it gives him inner peace, because dogs need order and regulated skills. On the other hand, if you let him do what he wants, he will suspect that no one is competent enough to lead the group and will feel obliged to ensure order himself. And that's just as little fun for him as it is for you as the owner, because most dogs are simply overwhelmed by so much responsibility. Therefore, it is not a bad thing in itself if the animal sleeps in bed. But the dog must clearly know where his position is in his family. For example, if your four-legged friend is lying in bed with mom and growls at dad when he wants to lie down too, then you definitely got a prob. The dog no longer has any social behavior because he is used to being the prince that everyone pays homage to. That's why the dog wants to have his master or mistress all to himself and won't tolerate anyone else next to him.
Given this background, it is logical that dog schools are founded like hell. Overtaxing the dog on the one hand and assuming it has highly social, human-like skills on the other is absolutely not species-appropriate and results in behavioral problems on the part of the four-legged friend. A dog doesn't need a party, a raincoat or a social media profile. A dog is easy to care for; all he needs is food, a place to sleep, exercise, love and order. Therefore, this construct that dogs are a substitute for our human needs should be moved away, in the name of all dogs. Don't give your dog too many human traits and let the dog be a dog! This will be better for both of you. Promised ! 😏