Sometimes, I feel a little weird if someone tells me I have a beautiful dog. I usually say “thank you” but to be honest, I had nothing to do with it. Though I think of myself as a pet parent, I didn’t actually contribute anything to the creation of my handsome Moose man or my lovely Lally Bee. (People often stop me to ask what she is, because she is a unique looking little boxer/shar-pei cross.)
Maybe part of the problem is that I’m not good at accepting compliments for myself. Someone tells me something nice, and I immediately try to deflect it. I tend to deflect compliments for the dogs, too.
Case in point: a friend has been watching Animal Planet, and some of the pet training shows they have. She tells me how bad the dogs on those shows are, and then tells me how good Moose and Lally are. Every time, I deny it. “Sure, when they’re sleeping.”
It’s not that I think I have bad dogs, either. Moose is so loving and goofy. Lally is clever and playful. I love them both. But Moose barks a lot (I figure it must drive the neighbors crazy) and Lally is so skittish around children. Neither dog is really great with obedience. They know the basics, and that’s about it.
So on a scale of one to ten, I’m not sure where I’d put them. Above average, certainly, but I’m biased. But they’re not necessarily superstars, either. They’re pretty perfect for me, but not necessarily for other people. I can think of better trained dogs (like the dog who comes to the cats-only boarding facility with his owner the vet, or Canine Good Citizens) and animal heroes who I’d rate as tens for sure.
Or maybe I’m just too modest. In the future, I’ll just try to say “thank you” and give the dogs some extra pats to pass the compliments along.