Friday, October 10, 2014

How My Dog Acts Like a Human Baby


[Edit:  I hate this new Soundcloud thingamijig! It's so visually intrusive on the blog post.  But I do love this song and it's perfect for a Friday.]

Pet lovers pour all of their familial and (if you're a woman) maternal energy into their furbabies.  Apple is the first dog that I'm raising all on my own. I previously raised two dogs with a guy who I'm no longer with but who I still think of very highly (he was the best dad to our babies, was the best boyfriend to me and would have been a great husband & father)...I often think back with very fond memories of our little family, awww...

Back to the present.  Being the sole caregiver for a dog has not only changed my life, but made me realize, more than ever, how emotionally intelligent and feeling dogs are.  Check out this New York Times article commenting on how recent studies show that dogs have the same emotional intelligence as a 2-year-old child.  Seriously.  All the feelings that a 2-year-old can have, our dogs experience as well in a similar part of the brain.  That includes affection, security, happiness, bonding, fright, anxiety, fear of abandonment, longing. Pretty amazing stuff, but we dog-lovers already knew this, right?

And of course dogs are much smarter than toddlers because they have an in-born instinct that humans do not have and cognitively, they are advanced. 

Apple and I are approaching our 5-month mark together.  And every day she surprises me with the depth of her intelligence, her memory and emotions.  

But what's really cute and funny is how similarly she acts like a baby/toddler.  Here are some examples:

1.  PETULANCE!! She gets cranky and pouts when her sleeping schedule is disrupted. 

Dogs need lots of sleep and Apple in particular likes to stick to a schedule.  For the second time in a row, this morning, I had to get her up super early to meet the painters at our new house.  She was so unhappy and immediately started acting up.

Here is the sequence of events from just this morning:

She refused to get out of bed.
Cranky Face.  Wouldn't budge. Tried to drag her...dead weight, she was not having it. 
She merely licked the top of her delicious and non-reusable breakfast (it's raw, can't keep it after a few hours) and refused to eat it.

She stayed like a rock in the corridor, refusing to go to the elevator.  I had to drag her then eventually lift her upon which she slowly started walking with much annoyance. 

She refused to jump in the car.  

When we're driving, she's usually parked near the center console with her face looking forward right next to mine, like this:

Good Mood Apple = Mommy's Co-Pilot
Petulant Apple = I Don't Even Know You
(she seriously had her back to me the entire drive to our new house)
When we finally arrived at our new house, I opened the trunk like I always do to get her out but she ducked me, made a flying leap and ran after a cat.  

And of course, you can't scream or vent frustration, it's like screaming at a baby, it doesn't help the situation but instead hurts the relationship.  She finally snapped out of her bad mood after a long nap and a play session at a dogpark. 

I'm learning so much patience as a mommy.  So. Much. Patience.  And patience does not come naturally to Koreans!!

2.  She thinks all toys were made just for her.

Went to World Market yesterday.  She immediately seized a shower sponge as her toy, jumped into a papasan chair and started happily gnawing on it
(I'm getting her a papasan chair because she loves it so much!!
I think the bowl shape makes her feel safe and happy)
3.  She has a huge sense of play.  

When she's not being Petulant Apple she loves to play with mommy.  During one of our favorite walks in Santa Monica, she decided to, all of a sudden, play hide-and-seek with me amongst some tree trunks.



I've played hide-and-seek with her in the past which is how she learned the game, but this was the first time she started the game on her own and my brain exploded with cuteness overload.
I'm sure your dog also does little baby things that are so adorable you just want to die! 

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