Sunday, August 10, 2008

Hanging Out with Dad!

DH Don ("Dad" to the canine kids) just loves his labs; no doubt about it

And the kids know it, too.

Did you notice little Tuc sitting nicely at is DH's feet above with the rest of the gang? Even Gracie, my sister's dog seated in front of Tuc, gets in on the action.

There's just something about their interaction that warms my heart and (truth be told) makes me a little jealous. Elsie, Ridge, Kenya, Pinot, and even Tuc respond differently to Don than to me. Our other Labs (Baxter, Stoney, and Strider) did, too.

Now, don't get me wrong -- they love us both; they listen to us both; they respond to commands from us both; they snuggle with us both. And we both feed them, work with them, groom them, play with them, and take them on outings. And we both sometimes get irritated with them (we are human, after all).

But they're just, well... "different" with Don.

Maybe it's that he's a guy, and dogs do tend to react differently to men than to women.

Maybe it's that Don's taller than I am and has a deeper voice.

Or maybe it's that he's at work all day every weekday, and they don't get to see him as much (I work from a home office, so they see me all the time).

Or maybe it's they sense my willingness to defer to Don when we're both with the dogs (as in Don is the alpha and I'm beta as far as they're concerned).

But it's like they worship him! (What am I chopped liver? Well... I guess that wouldn't be such a bad thing in this case.)

He's the Pied Piper, and wherever he goes, they follow. You can just see their adoration:

They sure do love him. And he they.

The cool thing about labs is that, unlike human children, they never outgrow their worship of us. They think we're God's gifts to them their entire lives. They think we can make all things good happen. They trust we'll never let them down.

Human kids know better.

Labs live under the Grand Illusion that their humans are the best humans in the world.

And they'd love us even if we weren't.

If that's the case, then it's okay with me to be the "beta" to DH's "alpha." It doesn't really matter as long as I'm one of their primary humans.

Now, as someone once said, if only I could become even half the person my labs think I am.

In my mind, DH already has. :o) Looks like I've got some catching up to do.

'Til next time,


JuliaR said...

It was ever thus with our pack of three. Uma worshiped Peter, even though I spent all day, every day with her. Eventually, I accepted it as just the way things were. sigh.

I am so excited abut Elsie! If she is pregnant (and I think you are right that she is), when would the puppies be due?

Mary said...

Well, looks like we need to create a Lab Mom club so we can all feel like Beta's. I, like you and Juliar spend all day with my lab Hope and yet the minute she hears her Daddy come down the street, it's, "whatever Mom, Dad is home." I sigh heavily and know that tomorrow when Dad goes to work, my girl will be back by my side and think I am the greatest thing since ice cubes were first discovered.