Ralph Higgins

Ralph Higgins
color pencil sketch by Gayle Higgins

Quotes I Like

"If you do not take an interest in the affairs of your government, then you are doomed to live under the rule of fools."

– Plato


Saturday, March 17, 2012

Man’s Best Friend

I mentioned to Gayle that it’s interesting to me how important dogs are to men. Women don’t seem to make that strong connection to a dog that a man does. And it seems to be universal. I had a woman tell me that she doesn’t trust a man who doesn’t own a dog.  I thought that was interesting.  Here in Quincy, everyone has a dog or several dogs.  Most of the cars in town have a dog; some of them sitting like a human in the passenger seat.

I’m convinced some dogs think they are human. And some owners, like me, forget that their dog is not human.  It’s typical to become anthropomorphic the more you interact with your dog.  I always forget that Dakota is just a dog. He’s more of a furry son with four legs. He’s so smart that we can’t even spell certain words. The little sucker has learned to spell and immediately gets excited to go for a walk, even if you spell the word “w-a-l-k.”   

My observation of men and their dogs led to a discussion with Gayle as to “why” the bond between man and dog.  It was interesting that Gayle immediately began to verbalize her opinion, which is one that I too had considered.  It’s a touchy subject and if your wife isn’t trained to “sit” and “stay,” you may not want to bring it up.

In Gayle’s mind, “men love dogs because dogs are what their wives are not.”  Did I hear that right? Yep.  I heard it right from Gayle’s own mouth.  And it’s true.

Dogs are obedient, appreciative, loyal, loving, easily trained, and they don’t talk. They are always glad to see their master. Our dogs worship us. When given a treat, dogs love us for it. Gayle didn’t say this stuff.  I did.

You never have to repeat the redemptive phrase, “It’s my fault” in order to keep the peace with your dog.  I’ve been tempted to print a sign that says exactly that and simply hold it up even before I try to load the dishwasher “the right way.”  It reminds me of a country western song, “It’s hard to kiss the lips at night that chewed your ass all day.”  But you’ll never have that concern with a dog. As I said, dogs don’t talk.

Our dogs lie at our feet and lick our hand. They always want to be with us and want to go where we go. And it doesn’t take them an hour to get ready to go, either.  Their disposition never changes. They wag their tails at us, like our wives used to.

Is it really any wonder why a dog is man’s best friend?

P. S. – I ran this piece by Gayle before posting it and she liked it.  I may be dumb, but I’m not stupid.


  1. WOW this one is tough to comment. First because it's true and second because most of us would not want our wives to know we believed that these points are down home basic truths. My two dogs which Jan claims are her's have been here in my home office all afternoon, sitting and occasionally sleeping as they determine have me safe and protected, and will shortly be sure the two of them are fed.

  2. Malcolm - You'll notice that I cleared this with Gayle before publishing it. The last thing I need is to find a feeding dish right next to Dakota's that says "Ralphie." I started getting nervous when I spilled my coffee and she rubbed my nose in it and hit me with a rolled up newspaper.

  3. Well, in our home, our dog bonded with Kay Lynne rather than me. I thought I was getting a fishing buddy, but instead he (Buddy, our dog) bonded naturally with her and became her constant friend. I don't know what that says about me and dogs, but it sure tells me I have one, smart, intelligent pet whose capacity of choice is exquisite.

  4. Rog - Good analysis. Just knowing that your dog and you share a bond with the same woman, is a compliment to both of you. Especially since I know what a good woman you have with Kay Lynne.

  5. Ralph, we are men so we know we are "dumb" automatically!

    Help me on the dishwasher part! I cannot, for the life of me, get the plates to lie flat in the dishwasher! My wife always says some "stupid guy" has been in the kitchen again! And why put in glasses upside down? Everything will spill out!

    I may be "dumb" but I AM "stupid"!

  6. Ed - Sometimes it helps to apologize for what you did wrong before you do anything. You're going to have to do it anyway, so why not get it over with in advance?