There are some people who seem to relish getting kisses from, and giving kisses to, dogs. I am not one of those people! In fact, I don’t even like dogs to lick my face and to be honest, would just as soon they didn’t lick me anywhere. While some might attribute this to the propensity most dogs seem to have for licking their nether regions, for me personally, the idea of something wet and slobbery all on my face is just nasty, no matter how sterile it’s supposed to be.
In my house however, I am apparently alone in my revulsion. Our dog Shiba is constantly chased, badgered and dragged into kissing sessions that give me the willies. Of course, watching the bond between a boy and his dog is a special thing indeed, even if does border on the abusive. But, since Shiba tolerates his behavior without the slightest hint of aggrevation at his foolishness, we’ve just left it alone
Recently however, a bit of reality hit home as we came face to snout with the rather abrupt conclusion that (i) not all dogs like to be kissed and (ii) size does not matter when a dog is unhappy with the loving advances of new friends. I should mention here that I did not witness the brutal act I’m about to describe and can only tell it like I heard it. I had retreated to the back bedroom to watch football when I heard little guy in full bellow. You know the sound; the one where they’ve sucked in all the air from every corner of the outdoors, and with tears streaming out of their eyes and snot flowing freely from their nose, with brown face turning blue, they let out a stream of unintelligible wailing at fever pitch.
“Is the dog still out front?” I was asked as I came running out of the bedroom. I started towards the front as I heard “well, that’s what you get for trying to kiss her!” My mind was, as is typical, a whirlwind. Had Shiba finally had enough and bitten Paris I wondered? It wouldn’t have surprised me! As I made my way through the dining room, I saw a trail of blood on my freshly cleaned hardwood floors. Freaking out completely, I looked out the front window and noticed a guy holding a little Yorkie. Poor thing, even in its plaid over-coat I could tell it was shivering. He looked slightly perturbed. Surely this wasn’t the dog that had just mauled my child? I ran back to the bathroom to survey the bloody damage and in the process found out that it was indeed the dog that bit Paris.
After assessing the damage (nice, long, deep cut to the lower lip) , I started to get pissed. What kind of dog chews up a kid’s face? Somewhere in the back of my brain I heard the Wicked Witch of the East wheezing out “I’m going to get you my pretty!” I stormed toward the front door intent on the count being JB 1 / Yorkie in stupid plaid sweater 0. Luckily for all of us, rational thought prevailed before I could execute justice on one stupid little dog.
Of course, no good drama should ever happen at my house without sufficient analysis from me. And so I’ve managed to simmer and stew on the whole broohaha for a little while now. In the process, it has dawned on me that dogs are dogs! Were I a dog in a too-tight plaid sweater, I’d probably bite the heck out of some over-amped little kid who stuck his schnozz into mine little world too.
Paris and I have had several conversations since then about kissing dogs and I think he’s learned a pretty valuable lesson. The lesson you ask – DON’T! Unless of course it’s your own or you’ve made dang sure the dog is interested in your advances.
The more I’ve thought, the more I’ve become certain that the lesson Paris has learned is a lesson that a lot of us who have reached adulthood could learn as well. Heck, I remember having to learn that lesson. I too liked to kiss dogs – although they weren’t the four-legged, tail-wagging variety. No, usually they were the ones that were good for a quick romp in the hay (so to speak) and a pat on the ass on their way out the door. I was fearless in my approach! Why shouldn’t I be; we were all adults and knew what we wanted…right? And so, one day, I bent down to kiss the cutest of dogs, only to have the hell torn out of my lip. I leaped back with fear and confusion wondering why me?
After getting cleaned up and spending some time recovering, I realized that I was lucky. I only lost my dignity that day, and a couple of hundred dollars. By having this belief that all dogs wanted to be loved, I had allowed myself to walk blind into a situation that I shouldn’t have been in in the first place. I spent a long time thinking about that incident and I realized that by not sizing up the “dog” beforehand, I had set myself up for what happened. Like Paris, I’ve come to the realization that not all dogs need to be kissed, at least not right off the bat!