Doggy Style

Like entering the set of the twilight zone, where everyone is in on the private joke except you, I walk around this summer in Ireland, awestruck at the new trend that has evidently hit every third person or so. Men boast lean fit ones, women preen their cute fluffy ones, poses are perfected and positions are practised, , thousands of photographs are taken, videos are shared with others in the circle and even those outside the ring, as people all around Ireland seem to have become obsessed with, their dogs.

A few different situations arose that clarified the strong feelings that people have developed for their pets and seemingly only since I left the country.   I don’t recall a pet obsession in the eighties, nineties or noughties, and yet here we are, gone mad about dogs.

Open-mouthed I stood at the gate of Fota whilst it was explained to a woman and her three charges, a boy, a girl and a west highland terrier, that pets were not allowed into the park. I remained open mouthed as the aforementioned woman argued the point that her dog should be permitted entry on the basis that she had promised him, the dog, that he would be spending the day with the family and now look, the day would be ruined for everyone.   Incidentally the children (human) seemed un-perturbed by the possibility that Scruff wouldn’t be joining them and more interested in the box of mini muffins they had pinched from the picnic. In a huff, the woman left the gate and walked haughtily away, apologising to ‘baby’ (dog) for not being able to gain admission and scolding the children for attacking the picnic basket. As it happens this isn’t the first incident of its kind I have witnessed as it seems several parents of puppies trying to sneak their canine counterparts into children’s parks everywhere, each one thinking that the rules should be bent, just this once, for their little ball of lovable fluff.

A second situation arose when I visited someone who owns a sizeable dog and shared their home with that dog. I knocked at the door and immediately the scratching, yelping and pacing started because I was tensed up as the thought of meeting the monster mongrel.  After some deep breathing, I calmed down stopped scratching and the yelping stopped. The pacing continued.  The door opened and before I knew it there was a 20kg hunk of flesh, hair and drool on top of me. Assuming the owner would intervene and banish the bitch to the garden, I was shocked when she asked me to stay in the garden, as Banjo wasn’t used to me and wasn’t generally accustomed to strangers being in her home.

But the tin hat, or rather the leather collar was put on my doggie filled summer when an old friend, suggested we meet for lunch so I could meet her ‘new addition’. Surprised at the speed of the arrival but then again, a lot can happen in a year. I scrubbed and washed my additions, creased their hair neatly in place and donned the best stiffest stitch they had, ready for the meeting. I forked out twenty seven euros in Dunnes on neutral coloured blankets and a safe soft teddy bear.   Waiting patiently where I was told, outside, by the garden café, fully expecting a blooming first time mum arriving in a slight frazzle complete with buggy, changing bag, handbag, just in case bag, all in tow.

Instead, on arrived a cool calm and collected mommy carrying her new arrival in a Burberry carry case, immediately I felt a niggling resentment as mine only ever had Mothercare, at best, then again, mine wasn’t a cavalier king Charles, he was just a regular boy.   The chat revolved fully around the dog and how he had completed her life, again, I felt resentful as my arrival had torn my life to tatters.   No sleepless nights, varicose veins, stretch marks, weak bladder or shame when he kicks Granny, her style was beginning to look more attractive than mine.

I decided to expose the fatal flaw about having dogs over children and ask the question, ‘what about holidays?’, ‘oh no problem’, she replied, ‘he goes to the kennels for a tenner a night, its ideal’. There was nothing left to say, only, Congratulations, you must be very happy.

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3 thoughts on “Doggy Style

  1. Same here. I am forever saying that dogs are the new Prada – the must have accessory of 2014. Prefer no pets except for the handsome 2-legged variety who buy expensive gifts!

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