Paws for thought

PUBLISHED : Friday, 20 April, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 20 April, 2012, 12:00am


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Hello friends. Welcome back from the holidays. I hope you had some time to relax, and your Easter egg hunting was successful. Mine was. I caught two bunnies and a chick. Just kidding! As some of you may know, I spent some time with the editor, Sue, on her trip to India.

It was the first time I had ever been in that country so there were all sorts of exciting sights and smells to check out. The people we met were all so friendly and most of them could speak really good English. To be honest, I didn't get to do much sightseeing, which was a bit sad. I'd imagined at least being able to chase an elephant or two.

Although India has many different types of food, beef does not make it onto the menu, because most people are Hindu. No steak for this pup! In all but two provinces in India, it is illegal to slaughter cows. Hindus believe cattle are sacred. For them, cows represent all the good things the Earth gives us, without asking for anything in return.

Animals are very important in some cultures. Those cats had a good thing going in Egypt for a while, and that translated to milk and warm fireplaces throughout Europe. But few cultures worship dogs, have you noticed that?

Dogs had to work to earn their place with man. My ancestors had to help man to hunt. Then we had to help to guard stuff. Then it was sheep herding, police work, army work, pulling sledges, helping the blind see. We really do deserve some respect. Now we have to wear silly clothes and hang out in handbags. Not that I ever would ...

Have you noticed how those dogs in handbags always look a little annoyed? They're probably wondering what they did to deserve such a life. They're thinking: 'My ancestors were wolves and I've become handbag bling!' I won't say it's cruel as such, but I will say this: I don't need clothes, I have my own fur, thanks. I certainly don't need boots, because my feet are specially designed to keep me healthy. Our paw pads pump blood back up our legs, and they can only do this when we walk on them. I don't need to be carried everywhere in a bag, I need to get out and run. (Recent pictures of me hitching a ride on a hiker's backpack were staged, I promise).

I don't need designer mineral water, I just ask that it's clean. And I don't need a personal chef to serve up gourmet eats, I just need food that's healthy for me. Dogs are meant to move and run and play and get dirty. Those that are prevented from moving end up fat and sick.

So friends, before you choose to get a dog, I beg of you, treat us like we're your friend, not your doll.