It’s easy to get discouraged by the human race these days. So much fighting, turmoil, and hate. But there’s one place I go where I see great diversity. Different breeds get along fine, no matter color, age, shape, or size. Yes, over at the dog park, good manners abound — with one notable exception.
Everyone is greeted… fervently – Nothing is more exciting than a new arrival! All dogs gather and stare out the metal fence while the new attendee is brought out of his or her car. A few excited yips sound while the newcomer is led through the double gates, to the excited, welcoming throngs. (Some dogs like this group greeting more than others. I sense my eleven-pound Yorkie Libby could do without the welcoming committee).
Everyone is accepted without hesitation – No dog is ever shunned, ignored, or bullied (if anyone misbehaves, they must leave). “Let’s play!” seems to be the rallying cry and everyone’s invited. If a dog doesn’t want to play (Like Libby who I’m learning is a huge introvert), no problem. The other dogs do their own thing. If Libby changes her mind to go run with the pack (rarely), they’re more than happy to take her back. Everything is chill. A hippie commune is more uptight.
Everyone shares – A few decrepit looking tennis balls are always lying around, but the dogs don’t mind. In fact, the slimier and dirtier the better! Water bowls are also scattered about and the humans take turns filling them. It doesn’t matter how many gross tongues have slurped that water, so that it starts looking like the day after a drunken frat party. Sharing is fun!
Everyone lets each other “be” – Some dogs (mostly young ones) want to do nothing but scamper, run, and fetch. Other, more enterprising types, like to dig holes. In fact, there’s always a few craters here and there I try not to fall into. Still others like to keep their noses to the ground, having one giant sniff-a-thon. Libby especially loves to investigate the park’s edges, looking for that one Yorkie-size hole to escape. (Yes, I know my girl and watch her carefully).
But then there’s this…
Everyone gets to know each other (*cough*) too intimately – Sigh. Dogs will be dogs. Let’s face it, they’re disgusting. They love to sniff each other in gross places. Even Libby who I think believes she’s above the fray, can’t resist a good backside inspection. To me, she’s my dainty little white puffball, but once in a while, I’m reminded, ick, she’s a gross canine. I also know dogs can get publicly “amorous,” but thank God, haven’t seen any of that behavior.
Sometimes I wonder: what if the Government was run like the dog park?
What if Congress acted like canines, in terms of acceptance, sharing, and respect? After all, if you don’t play nice at the dog park, you’re not allowed in anymore. Wouldn’t that be nice in the Senate? What if everyone was allowed to just “be?”
Alas. Something to ponder as I walk around, trying not to step on soggy tennis balls.
Don’t you wish everyone had good manners like (most) dogs? Comments are always welcome and if you’d like, please share.
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