Are you in Love?

Usually, we are in love only several times.  It’s with our spouse, sweetheart, children and extended family.  Who else may be included in this ‘love” group?  Some people love money, possessions and even themselves which are just a few of the things we love but are there anything else that takes our heart?  While I know this may be a loaded question, “You and Your Dog Are Actually in Love With Each Other,” According to A New Study.  This brings up a multitude of questions about our relationship with our dog and what they mean to us.

Do you love your dog, do you do anything of these things, Gaze into their eyes, rub their ears, lean on them, have fun together and even snuggle and these are just a few things we do.  While I think there are two kinds of dog owners, they are dog owners and also dog lovers and there is a huge chasm in-between that and the two groups will never understand each other.

A research was conducted in two parts by a Japanese university and was published in the journal Science.  Researchers observed the interaction of dogs and their owners and measured their respective levels of the hormone oxytocin.  This "bonding hormone" is released during moments of human intimacy, including sex and between a mother and her child and let’s face it, dogs are our children.

I can say, I do love my dogs because they fill my needs of things I like and they reward me with their attention, licks and sleeping in my lap and who would want to lay in lap if you didn’t love them or care about them very deeply, I surely won’t.
According to an article in Mic in partnership with GE, “Not only do dogs seem to love us back, they actually see us as their family. It turns out that dogs rely on humans more than they do their own kind for affection, protection and everything in between.”  I see this every time when there is a storm and all the dog’s run to me for protection and comfort.  Just during a storm last Saturday, Annie ran to my lap at the first sound of thunder, as most of them do.

While I have written about this before, recently I have pondered this question and the effect on us when our beloved pet dies and leaves us.  Many times, I have felt the effects of this and wondered if I am normal and even wrote stories about it.  This seems like the answer is right in front of us, but no one wanted to admit it.  I remember when one of our dogs died many years ago and as I was burying them, my neighbor saw me and not knowing what I was doing and started walking up to visit.  I stopped him and motioned him off because I was crying so hard.

We all will be there
In the next couple of weeks, I intend to set up a place where we can share our thoughts about grief and pain and where we can hopefully help others.  Some people will never understand and I one said and was ashamed to admit it, but I cried more when my pet died than when my parents did, why is that.  Little did I know others feel this way have said the exact words.  Is this because we crazy, I don’t think so but if it’s true, at least I’m in good company.  Do our dogs love us, you bet but we will only get out of them what we put in.  You need to nurture this relationship as you would any.   Ken