Friday, March 09, 2007

Toady, My Bulldog, Understands Happiness

My English Bulldog, Toady, seems to be living life in reverse. She’s eight, which is getting up there for her breed. She has the typical age-related issues and gets a little pill for pain in the hips and a little pill to help her airways open up. She no longer jumps in the Jeep, preferring to climb up part way and then get a little boost from me to get the rest of the way. She’ll pass me in people-years this month.

But she’s as playful and energetic as she has ever been. She was timid as a pup, not too adventuresome. Took her two years before I heard her bark. Actually, it’s more a deep woof. She didn’t even eat that much as a pup, sometimes going once a day.

The secret to her acting like a pup when she’s an old lady is that, in her mind, she thinks she’s a little dog, maybe schnoodle size, maybe 15-20 pounds vs. a stocky, muscular (still svelte and beautiful) 50 pounds. She loves where we live now because there are dogs of all sizes out in the courtyard at any given time. That’s how I can tell she thinks she’s a small dog. She even prefers small places, so when I move next month, it will be to a house that will still be the size she prefers.

So I guess it’s how you view yourself that determines happiness… not how others view you. Well that and “greenies.” Smart pup.

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