Thanksgiving is the time of the year we start to think about what we are thankful for. Being a pawrent is a privilege: we always have someone to keep us company, they never hesitate to show how much they love us, and let's be honest, our pets provide us with endless entertainment. Dogs are good for us in many different ways: physically, emotionally, and socially. Here are the top 10 reasons why we are thankful for being pawrents.
1. Constant companions
Our dogs are always there for us. No matter how bad our day was, they will always be happy to see us because their love for us is unconditional. Their emotional support and perpetual cuddles never let us feel lonely. Thanks to them, we have a partner for everything, even going to the bathroom! Going for a walk, staying home watching TV, hosting people at home… they are always up for whatever we want to do, and they always want to be included. We never have to ask our pups to do anything with us, they are the first to sit shotgun in the front seat during a road trip.
2. They teach us patience
As cute as they are, we also know how messy they can be, and to deal with that we need lots of patience! From cleaning after them when they go to the bathroom on the carpet, to fixing the vase that “accidentally” fell on the floor when they were alone in the room, us pawrents have the patience of a saint. People with no dogs probably think we’re crazy for dealing with all of these things, but what they don’t understand is that our pups are our babies and we could never be mad at them. At least not for long. Another patience-consuming activity is training, it requires time and attention. But the results are so rewarding that it is all worth it in the end. Thanks to these experiences we are probably far more patient than the average human being.
3. They give our lives structure
Us humans can be very chaotic sometimes, if we don’t have anywhere to be at a specific time we may accidently find ourselves laughing out loud while browsing dog memes. With a canine companion there is a routine and always something to do, and someone to do it with. Their needs give our lives structure. A dog's day starts at walk o'clock followed by feeding time, another walk, barking at the neighbor's cat, and so on. Don't even think that you can break their routine! If something doesn't happen at the time they expect, they will be sure to let you know.
4. They are good for our health
As we already know, having a dog involves going on many, many walks. This makes us go outside and exercise, breathe fresh air and enjoy nature. Being with dogs boosts our immune system, making dog pawrents stronger against illness, aka superior to the rest of the population. Dogs also improve our health by making us laugh with their goofy antics, and as we’ve heard many times, laughter is one of the best forms of medicine. They’re practically doctors, or should we say dogtors.
5. Meet new people
When getting a dog many people are quick to say that a canine companion will limit our lives and restrict us from participating in daily activities. However, the reality is quite the opposite. Between trips to the vet, the dog park and the hurried walks around the block our furry friends bring us into contact with people we would have NEVER met before. Dogs are very social creatures, and in this case, it’s contagious. We are more likely to talk to strangers when we’re with our dogs than we normally would by ourselves. How many times has your dog found a new friend at the park and you start talking to the owner? Our canine companions make us more approachable and they are also a great conversation starter. They are a great way to meet new people and make new friends.
6. Boost our emotional health
There are no "Dog days" when you have your pup by your side. Dogs help reduce anxiety and depression, they prevent elderly people from feeling lonely, they're our babies and they make us feel better when everyone else is getting married and having human babies. They keep us company when we’re alone and we sleep deeper knowing they’re there to protect us. Petting them is a very relaxing activity that we do unconsciously, and by doing it we are taking a moment to slow down and enjoy their company.
7. They broaden our horizons
Life is overall more interesting with a four-legged bestie. They make us go to new places and discover new things. They broaden our horizons personally and socially, going to places we never would have thought existed because of them. They have made us venture far and wide to hunt down the best dog-friendly corners of our city. Our dogs follow their nose and lead us to surprising new places when out on their daily walks. They give us a reason to wake up at the crack of dawn and hike those mountain trails that have always made us feel tired at the thought of conquering them.
8. Provide us with endless social media content
It has been scientifically proven that we take more pictures of our dogs than our significant others. And, with all this cute puppy content, it would be selfish to keep it to ourselves. Having a dog and not sharing photos of it on social media requires self-discipline stronger than iron. Hands up who has an Instagram account for their dog? You are not alone. We also watch other people’s dog content, which also makes us happy. Plus, since they are always by our side, they’re an endless source of puppy content that makes our lives better. Looking at these photos can also make us miss them a little less when we’re away from them.
9. Teach us how to become more selfless
Having a fur baby implies having to take care of another living creature, which takes a lot of responsibility. They are the first thing we think about when we wake up in the morning, and the last before we go to bed. They can’t survive without us, their needs are our responsibility. This fills our hearts with such pure love that it makes us not care about missing parties or spending Christmas just with them. We worry so much about them and we would do anything for them.
10. They make the house a home
By definition, feeling at home is all about being comfortable and relaxed, which is exactly how our dogs make us feel. Having them around makes everything better, we are never home alone, and we have someone following us around and loving us unconditionally. The way they welcome us when we get home can make our day! The house feels empty when they’re not home, their fur is part of the home decor, and it wouldn’t feel like home without all their toys laying around. They take care of us as much as we take care of them, just in different ways. As long as they’re by our side we will always be home.