Birthday parties for dogs
Is it me or has the world gone mad?
A few weeks ago my mother-in-law told me that her dog, a handsome and quite manly, Belgium Shephard named Zeus had been invited to a birthday party. How strange I thought that an invitation would come to a dog, but it was for their friends dogs birthday party.
An official invitation it was too, naming the location, date and time of said party. I then found out that my parents dog, a toothless, big eared Yorkshire terrier (but gorgeous) called Chalky had also received an invitation, and ....yes, he would be attending.
I laughed to begin with thinking that it must be some kind of joke, but alas it was true. The parents of the birthday dog had decided to invite a number of their dogs friends around for lunch and birthday cake and a number of doggy games.
Now after speaking to my Dad after the party had taken place I found out that their dog, Chalky, won the best behaved class, listen, the competition must have been poor as Chalky growls and snarls at anything that moves. Bribery must have been in play here as food is the one sure fire way to get that dog to do anything.
I love dogs as much as the next person, I trained to be a dog groom as I love the quiet company, but to celebrate a dogs official birthday with a party full of barking hounds..... no I'm still not getting it....just picturing it in my head....no.
I remember watching a programme in the UK a couple of years ago filmed in America, where grown adults were having parties for their dogs, they were expected to get dressed up in their best clothing and jewelery and bring presents too.
Are these people crazy, or just do they just need to get out more and intigrate with other human beings?
But it seems like it's big business to treat your dog like a human being, allowing it the same luxuries and lifestyle of their owners.
It seems that this 'culture' is crossing the waters to that small island named 'England', the trend is catching on and the brainwashed Brits are following the American way.
We live in France and the way that dogs are treated is very different. Out in the sticks dogs are kept primarily as guard dogs and are tied up or left to roam outside and poo everywhere. Amazingly, dogs are also very expensive to buy, bonkers I think if you are going to leave it outside in all weathers.
Strangely, whilst keeping dogs to guard land and homes, the French are very liberal about allowing dogs into restaurants and cafes. We have witnessed dogs sat on their owners knees whilst eating in restaurants, this practice seems common place here.
Now, this hub so far makes me sound like I am mocking this behaviour, read on my friends as I too have a guity secret. I have fallen into this bizarre culture along with the many millions of others who undertake the annual ritual that is..... Christmas Day.
When I was born, my parents had a toy poodle called Bonnie that my sister and I dressed up in dolls clothes from as early as I can remember, then a mongral called Bella, sadly not with them anymore. Each Christmas day we would wake up and go to the living room to see what Santa had brought for us, and around the room there would be a number of piles containing presents for each of us INCLUDING THE DOG!!
We would sit and watch the dog 'opening its present' (actually just tearing the paper to get the chews inside) and when we were satisfied the dog was happy we would then open our presents.
So, after meeting my now husband and buying our first house, we went to the RSPCA and bought a lab X, who was 11 weeks old, named him Brutus and brought him home with us.
Each and every year since (he is now nearly 16 years old) on Christmas Day he has had his own little pile of presents that he knows are his, he waits to be told, then rips open the package for the treats he has already sniffed out.
So maybe us English are catching up with the Americans when it comes to spoiling our pets, my parents have been undertaking this ritual for all of my 36 years on earth, and I am sure our daughter who is 10 years old will continue this ritual from us and include their dogs in her family acticities.
Although dog birthday parties and dog weddings.....I am still not sure, maybe next year.