The other night I had an argument with the husband so I harrumphed up the stairs and went to bed early. (Actually, I harrumphed up then back down then back up, since I had forgotten the ipad in the living room. This took away a fair bit of the effect from my initial harrumph but it also allowed me to watch a new season of The Vampire Diaries in bed, so…).
Buster the Schnauzer did not have even a moment of angst over what to do in such a situation. Without hesitation, my loyal friend followed me up the stairs, AND back down, AND back up. As I settled under the covers, he sat upright on the bottom of the bed with a look that clearly said, “You are everything wonderful and perfect in the world and HE is an ass.” (Buster has a very expressive face). As we shared a moment of unspoken agreement, I came to realize that Buster the Schnauzer is a relationship savant, with an understanding of the female gender that exponentially exceeds that of my poor husband.
Like most men, hubby claims that he has been trying to “figure out” women for most of his life. And, like most men, he is progressing towards this goal at a snail’s pace. After nearly three decades of togetherness, the father of my three children still has no idea what I might want for my birthday, cannot locate my “good side” when taking a photo, and thinks that an action/war/zombie apocalypse movie is a great “date night” choice. I believe that he should consider job-shadowing the dog for a few days because Buster has a lot to teach… and hubby has a lot to learn.
I have been watching Buster practicing his “woman skills” on me and I have noticed that it all boils down to five pretty simple strategies:
1. He looks at me when I am talking. Maybe it’s because he has no thumbs so he can’t channel surf or send texts or check his standings in the latest football pool. Whatever the reason, it is great to look over and see him listening
2. He is always happy to see me. Even when I’m only in the basement doing laundry, he is thrilled to see me re-emerge in the kitchen and always gives me a quick sniff, just to make sure I’m okay and was in no way injured during my perilous trek to the lower floor of the house.
3. He is happy just being together. I never worry that Buster is bored with my television viewing choices or that there is “no one he knows” at an event. He just wants to be with me. If we’re together, then it’s fun enough for him!
4. He doesn’t try to “fix” anything. Feeling blue? Buster will just lie beside you and commiserate. No need to explain “why”. No pressure to “cheer up”, “get over it”, or “let it go”. Nope. Buster is perfectly okay with a little wallowing (or a lot of wallowing if that is your preference)
5. He notices things. New haircuts, new outfits, new way of sitting on the sofa… No matter how small the change is, Buster will notice and he show an interest. The passion with which he shows his interest may in fact dishevel your new hairdo, rip a hole in your new outfit, and/or cause minor bruising, but still.. it’s flattering that he notices!
Please note that I am not advocating that women should stop having relationships with men and simply get a dog instead. But I am saying that any woman who already has a man may want to consider adding a dog to the picture. And if you must choose between one or the other…