Tuesday, May 14

advice from the dog: How to Be a Better Animal - Tips & Tricks for Humans

My dog Lila needs only one name.  Like Madonna.  Or Bjork.  Or Macklemore. She's a superstar. And she has tips for you, Humans.

How to Be a Better Animal 
Lila's Essential Tips & Tricks

1.  When you're thirsty, drink.  When you're hungry, eat.  When you're sleepy, sleep.  When you're bored, make sure everybody knows it by racing in huge circles around the yard and kicking up enough dust to facilitate climate change.

2. Don't fly in planes; bark hysterically at them.  They're dangerous.

3. Give some credit to your fellow animals.  If your water bowl becomes inexplicably empty and has failed to magically refill itself by the time you're thirsty again, bark at it a few times.  Sometimes you have to ask. If you ask, your fellow animals will often step up to the plate and help you out.  After all, your water bowl may be magical, but your fellow animals probably can't read your mind.

4. Give credit to yourself.  If  Ghostly Black Storm Riders or Crazy-Scary Demon Witch Vampires invade your yard (and they will!), don't wait for anyone to save you.  You are smart enough, strong enough, and have enough fur to fend off danger.  It's okay to put up your hackles - everyone gets scared sometimes - but don't let fear prevent you from leaping into the necessary battles.

5. Remember that not all battles are necessary.  Sometimes it's okay to let a guy and his dog walk past your house without getting worked up about it.  And sometimes when your ball rolls under the couch, it's better to think about it for awhile before going ballistic (so to speak).  Figure out when you need to be fight-ready and when it's better to lie on your belly with your nose stuffed under the couch and pointed towards the ball lodged under there and meditate on your situation for awhile.  Say to yourself: Do I really need my ball right this second or will this other ball next to my foot suffice for the moment?  Are those really Ghostly Black Storm Riders out there, or is it merely the neighbor cleaning his grill?

6.  Don't be hot.  Or cold.  Or wet.  Well.  Maybe wet.   If it's hot, stick out your tongue, collapse onto your side on a cool patio, and accept the heat.  It just is so just be in it.  If it's cold, curl into a tiny ball against the arm of the couch, bury your nose in your tail, and accept the cold.  It just is so just be in it.  Those are just external stimuli.  You don't have to focus on them.  They don't have to make you miserable. Rain is different. If it rains, climb up onto the table under the ramada and stand there with your ears plastered back against your head.  Try to stay as far away from puddles as possible.  Try to avoid becoming wet in the first place.  Same goes for snow.

7.  Love your fellow animals with abandon.  If they make you happy, tell them so.  They'll appreciate it.  Lick them, make growly noises of love into their ears, and do the love boogie whenever they come home or wake up in the morning or return from the bathroom.  After all, someday your fellow animals will be gone.  They'll leave for work, and you won't know when - or if - they're coming back.  So don't hold back with the boogie-ing and growling.

8. You don't need to spend a lot of money to have a good time.  It really is the simple things.  Forego the huge TV and go outside to chase doves or look for cats out the front door or find yourself an old sock to chew on.  Go for a walk.  Go for a run.  Take a nap.  Good times. 

9. It's easy to make friends.  Make a new friend every day.  That guy over there?  He could be a friend.  Go talk to him.  Wag a lot so he knows where you're coming from. Put your paws on his chest so you can look him in the eye.  It's a good way for you two to get to know each other quickly.

10. Don't go around expecting to meet enemies. Expect your fellow animals to be good and most of them will prove you right. 


Wistfulwanderer said...

I like #10 the most!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for these tips, Lila! There are frequently old socks lying around my house. I've just been throwing them in the wash, but chewing on them might be a nice change.

And I am SO with you on the ball under the couch thing. I gave my little humans a half-dozen ping-pong balls recently. I can only find two now, and they're both under the couch. I've tried lying on the floor to get them, but I usually just end up enjoying the new perspective and the chance for an impromptu rest (if my kids think I'm working, they leave me alone).

Anonymous said...

Again with the no posting thing. What are we going to do with you?

Anonymous said...

TOO handsome!