Dogs > children. Don't argue with me.
OK, so I’m not a mother in the sense that I pushed kids out of my hoo-ha, but I still think I’m a mother after all. No, not to human babies, although I swear I love them as much as if I’d delivered them myself. Disturbing? Absolutely. True? Totally. So how am I mother, you ask? (Aside from the aforementioned curse word?) Here are a few reasons:
1. I deal with poop all the time.
No, it isn’t in a diaper but I have to pick it up with a plastic bag, so I’m still hurting the environment the same way. The bad part is that unlike babies who (hopefully) grow out of needing moms to tend to their bowels, my dogs will never become sufficient at picking up their own poo (with anything other than their mouths).
2. I take them to daycare.
Yes, I’m that mom and if you took your dog to daycare, you would know why we do. Best money ever spent - and I don’t even have to pack a lunch for them! Much like mothers of human babies, I also worry about what they’re learning at daycare. I fear one day Shady Jack will come home and drop the f-bomb. (I know that guy is learning bad language from all the other pups, as it certainly wouldn’t come from my angel.)
3. I’m up at least twice during the night with them.
From whimpering to peeing to running out of water, I’m up with them a few times a night when all I really want to do is sleep. My husband and I take turns pretending to be asleep so we don’t have to get up. We’re just like a real family!
4. One of them is always going to the doctor.
From the sniffles to randomly being attacked by two dogs, one of them is always going to the doctor for something. We haven’t had a pink eye outbreak yet but I know it’s coming. (No thanks to daycare.)
5. I spoil them with toys and treats they don’t need.
Do they need baskets full of toys and an entire cabinet of treats? Not anymore than your kid needs 10 Barbie dolls and a Malibu playhouse. Yet whenever I’m at a pet store, I feel obligated to get them something. After all, they deserve it, right?
6. I talk to them in a baby voice.
I don’t want to admit this, but I do. I sometimes talk to them like they’re babies and I ask them questions. I don’t expect answers from them … yet.
7. I assume everyone wants to see pictures and hear stories about them.
Much like moms with their wallets full of baby photos, I’m the same way with my iPhone full of dog pics. Do you want to see them? Not any more than I want to see the photo of your kid’s school picture.
8. I’m convinced they’re the cutest things ever and no one has cuter babies.
This is not up for debate. I’m convinced of it because it’s 100 percent true.
9. I will personally inflict pain to anyone who hurts them.
For reals. Don’t even think about it.
10. Our house is in constant disarray because of their toys and playtime.
They can’t learn to put their toys away before getting out more and I’ve often threatened to take them away if they don’t start taking care of them better. I then burst into tears because I realize I’ve turned into my mother.
11. They’re the reason we miss social events.
From missing a charity event because Bentley ingested stuffing from a toy, to missing a road trip with friends because Shady Jack’s junk was bleeding, we seem to miss events just as much as other parents do.
12. Our friends are comprised of their friends’ parents.
Just like soccer moms team up together in their velour track suits with their cup of espresso, dog moms team up together in their dog-walking clothes with their handful of poo bags. It’s a shared bond, and no, you can’t join in.
13. I correct other parents on their parenting styles.
If I see someone handling their dog in a way I don’t agree with, I say something. Did they ask me for help? No, but I’m sure they’re happier to have my wisdom, as I’m clearly an excellent dog parent. Moms on the playground do the same thing. Everyone hates those moms.
14. I spend most of my disposable income on them.
Have you seen the cute toys/bones/treats/collars/leashes/games you can buy for your dogs? If you have, you definitely have a living room full of Angry Bird dog toys and doggie iPhones.
15. Conflicting parenting styles are a source of continual arguments.
At times, Matt and I disagree about which way is the best way to discipline the dogs. Obviously, since I’m always right, my parenting style is correct. However, it takes him a minute before I beat him down, he comes to his senses and realizes my way is the right way.
See? I’ve convinced you why I’m a mother. I’ve also convinced you I’m a crazy dog person who probably needs to get a grip on reality, but you knew that already. Much like all moms, I love my boys far more than I should and I wouldn’t trade the three of them for anything in the world. I couldn’t be happier with them and I’m so lucky I get to be their mom. And just like other moms, I don’t have a favorite.*
*I totally have a favorite.
This article was originally published at http://lisanewlin.com. Reprinted with permission from the author.