Tuesday, January 31, 2012

A Working Dog

Almost every time we take one of our road trips--like we did this past weekend--I visit one of the 'named' pet stores in the town.  Our cat is a bit picky in her eating habits, so I have to get to a bigger store with a better and larger selection of food.  The strangest thing about our cat is that I cannot buy the same food two bags in a row--in other words, she will be happy with food for one bag's worth and then needs something new.  At least these days she WILL eat seafood--something she wouldn't touch when she was younger.

When I get into the pet store, I must walk all through it, just to see what is new.  I always enjoy looking at the animals they have ready for adoption from the Humane Society--and those animals are almost always cats.  This past Sunday there were six young cats--not kittens, though--ready for adoption.  I loved seeing that none of them were distressed in any way.  Some days when I go there, some of the animals will be crying for attention, where these cats seemed to be quite content to wait for someone to take them home.  They all were healthy looking and very calm.  If we lived closer to this store, I would have a hard time not to take every one of the animals home with me.  And it was very hard for me to leave one of the cats:  a Russian Blue mix.  Kind of like this:

Just look at that face!  But, our cat will not tolerate another feline in the house, so I can't even think about adopting.

A lot, if not most, pet stores will allow pets to visit the stores with their owners.  It is always fun to see the different pets shopping and be able to pet and talk to different breeds than what I normally get to see.  On Sunday, I saw a real working dog--and he was gorgeous.  He was a German Shepherd and was wearing a 'drug detection dog' vest.  The handler also said that he was a cadaver dog and had been in some disaster areas doing his job.  

(The dog looked a LOT like this.)

While I love the look of German Shepherds, I do have a healthy respect for them--as well as a bit of a fear.  I was shopping on the other side of the store from the dog  and all of a sudden I heard a very deep, loud, and frightening barking--which I assumed was the drug/cadaver dog. I know for a fact that if I was confronted by a dog barking like that I would confess to anything--including the crucifixion of Christ!  But, when I got to the checkout, the dog was laying down calmly and a three-year-old boy was petting him--so, obviously, he only sounded vicious.

It seems as if most working dogs that I see--seeing eye dogs, for example--have a look about them that makes me want to cuddle them.  I know you are not to talk to or distract a working dog without asking permission first, so I usually just leave them alone.  But I find it very, very hard to do.  Anyone else just want to touch and talk to working dogs, too?  And why is that?  Do we respect what they do so much that we want to 'reward' them with some affection?


Anonymous said...

I enjoy going into Pet Smart and reading the stories behind the cats for sale. Can't tell you how many times I have wanted to bring one home...I'd be overrun with cats now.

cmk said...

If The Youngest didn't work in a vet's office, I'm not sure they would have as many animals as they do--but she IS a nut about animals, so who's to say. I KNOW I couldn't be around that many adoptable animals and not take as many home as I could. :)

Janet said...

I think we're so moved by the thought of an animal doing a human's job (or a job that a human can't do) that we want to express our affection.

As a dog owner, I can tell you that when I see dogs being walked on the street, I look at the dogs, and I couldn't tell you what the owner looks like!

cmk said...

I'm so glad that there are others who see the animal before the person, too! I always thought it was just me, because 'I don't like people.' ;)