How My Kids Prepared Me for Being a Dog Owner

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6. I’m used to inappropriate touching. Fortunately neither my kids nor my dog is a crotch-sniffer or thigh-humper. Although if my dog were, I suppose years of kids grabbing my boobs or tugging on my pants and giving me plumber’s butt in public has probably given me a little training in handling inappropriate touching.

7. I don’t fall for the sad, puppy-dog face (most of the time). If I did, I’d be in trouble with this guy:

How My Kids Prepared Me for Being a Dog Owner

Just look at him, even when he’s happy he looks suicidal. My youngest also has a very convincing pouty face, some have suggested that her sad face resembles a Basset Hound (as her mother, I cannot say this is true, but I won’t deny it either). I’ve developed an immunity to the puppy pout over the years, though I admit to occasional lapses.

8. If you can sleep-train a toddler, you can crate-train a 4-year-old dog. We didn’t have much choice other than to put our dog in a crate when we leave him home alone; he peed in the house every time we left him, even when we gated him in the kitchen, and if we left him in our fenced backyard he would howl constantly, disturbing our neighbors. I’m not sure who crate-training was harder for—me or him. But I sleep-trained two of my kids and I knew what I had to do: be tough, be consistent, and bribe when necessary. We got through it. Now, if only my kids’ bedroom doors had an outside lock like the crate, sleep training would have been a lot quicker.


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