I’m bored. I’m neglected. And yes, I’m hungry.
Now, before you get defensive, let me explicate upon these seemingly hurtful statements. I know you’re doing your best with this whole parenting thing, but, to be frank, I need you to do better. Much better. I just feel like you don’t even know me anymore. Ever since that other child came along (whom I love, don’t get me wrong), your attention toward me has waned to say the very least. You used to take pictures of me. Me. But now your phone is so crammed full of pictures with your other child, I’m lucky if my tongue gets a cameo in any of them. Even my best attempts at photobombing often gets cropped out.
That’s hurtful, Mom. I just want to be remembered by more than my tongue when I’m gone. Is that too much to ask?
While we are being honest: I need more social time. I need more play dates. I would preferably like to eat more and preferably, I would it like it to be your food not mine. Because, let’s be real, this mush you are feeding me could be exponentially better. I see your other child getting well-balanced, three-course meals while I’m over here getting a dirty bowl full of unidentifiable bits. In fact, when your other child tries to eat my food, you cry out to tell her to stop as if it is poison. Is it poison, Mom? What is this you’re feeding me that is so bad that you won’t let her eat it?
By the way, I can do more than sit and lay down. If you haven’t noticed, I am extremely nimble when chasing rabbits out of your garden. Your tomatoes? Your lettuce? You have me to thank for your bounty of garden goodness. In fact, my agility is the talk of all the other backyards in our neighborhood. I am feared. I am the master of the yard, alarm system to the house, and I can kill your weeds you dislike so much with my impeccable accuracy when I relieve myself. Say the word, I will eat any bag of dirt, fertilizer, mulch, and children’s toys that you may accidentally leave out on the deck. And I will live to tell the tale.
I try to wake you up every morning at 6 a.m. by breathing and panting as loud as I can while licking your face. But, you simply brush me off and say “Go lay down boy!” No! I will not lay down! I am ready to commence the day before your other child has the chance to wake up and heist all the attention away from me and divert it to her neverending requests for preposterous needs. What about my needs, Mom?
I’m not trying to make you feel bad, but I just feel like it’s time for things to change around here. I lay here all day and get my fur pulled, my back sat and jumped on, my tongue kissed, my ears ruffled roughly, all the while being largely ignored by you. And I don’t say a thing. I lay here and take it. I watch your other child intently and I protect her with all that I am. When she cries, I am panicked. (Sidenote: I don’t agree with your “cry it out method” you use sometimes. Her screaming is not only heartbreaking, but unbelievably shrill. Please make her stop.) And what do I get for all this? An occasional treat? A walk every now and again? A mediocre meal? I know I’ve already mentioned the food situation, but I think it’s worth mentioning again: I need more. Better quality. And a variety. Please, please may I have some variety in my meals?
Mom, you know it. I know it. Dad knows it. Even your other child knows it. I deserve better. When I’m staring at you with those crazy eyes at the end of each day after everyone else has gone to bed, contrary to what you might believe, I don’t just have to go potty. There’s more to me than that; I’m not as one-dimensional as you think. I just want you back, Mommy. I want our relationship back before your other child came along. I love you and I just need you to prove that you still love me.
You can start with the food piece. I won’t beat a dead horse here, but really, the food piece is of utmost importance. I also read an article on Buzzfeed about the top ten reasons you should massage your dog. You could look into that, afterall, my love language is physical touch. Lastly, I heard you and Dad talking about getting another dog last night and just so you know; that is not happening. I’m not kidding. I will chew through the fence and run away. This is not a threat.
Your Loving Canine Son,