Those doggy magazines and sites are chockful of gift ideas for pets at this time of the year. I was blown away by the ingenious ideas and cute toys, and then a little voice (an echo of Elliott, perhaps) sounded in my head. Do my two dogs, who’ve already got a big basket full of toys, want or any need more? I know there’s that famous dog who can identify up to a hundred of his toys by name, but my two are not in that category, no way. So, what would they really appreciate most of all?
As always, my better half had the answer at the ready. “Love”, she said, “that’s what I’m planning on giving. Not just cuddles, but love gazes.”
“Look, Kit, you know how I’m always looking up things. Well, I stumbled on a website that talked about a study that was done on dogs and their emotional well-being. It said that when your dog gazes lovingly into your eyes, and you return that loving gaze, what’s really happening is that your dog is enjoying a spike of oxytocin, often called the “Love Hormone”. That love hormone flows both ways, so I’ll get a nice boost as well.”
“You could try looking at me that way too,” I joked.
“What you could do is play hide and seek with them. That’s their next favourite thing after walkies. Just think of some clever places to hide those new treats we bought for them.”
“So, what you’re saying is take a break and play with them.”
“Absolutely. They’re here for us one hundred percent, and now is a good time to be there for them. Comfort and joy, and all that,” she said, raising an eyebrow, but there was a twinkle in her eye.
“And while you’re doing that, I’ll cook them some lamb shanks,” she added.
I used to sing a song for my dog Beryl, while stroking her. She was a real party dog and loved it when she had a blingy bow attached to her collar. Her self-image was very important to Beryl, and she simply adored this special time between us. Beryl knew this song was for her because her name was in it. She loved being made to feel like a star.
Here’s how the simple lyrics went :
“Isn’t she lovely,
Isn’t she beautiful,
Beryl is wonderful,
Ooh, ooh, ooh!’
Repeat until she fell asleep.
I must think about what special song Adriana would sing to Elliott. There’s no doubt those two have a special relationship. It would be something that she would play for him on her flute too.
On that note,
Happy Christmas and all the best for the New Year
Elliott and I plan to have a new story for you in 2023.
In the meantime, I hope you enjoy Every Which Way But Home, the prequel to the Mutt to Megastar series.
You can get it here