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Everything You need to Know in Life you Can Learn from a Dog

Updated on December 22, 2011

Our four legged friends are good role models

I love dogs. I've had a lot of experience being around dogs. I've been a dog owner; a dog groomer, a dog walker, and an animal-rights activist. I'm very familiar with dog behavior and I think that we humans have a lot to learn from our canine companions. Humans are so caught up in pre-concieved notions and judgments that cause a lot of grief and bickering. Let's look at a dozen things dogs have to teach us.

Let People Know How You feel: Did you ever feel ignored or unappreciated by your spouse or the person you're dating? Do you wonder if their feelings have changed because they aren't very demonstrative anymore? Or maybe you're not showing them how glad you are that they're in your life. Well, you never have to worry about that with a dog. Your dog will greet you by the door, jumping up and down; tail wagging and excited that you're home. There's no wondering about how your pooch feels. The love is obvious. That's how we should treat the people in our lives. Let them know you care.

Appreciate the value of a good rest: We're all so busy in the modern world that we don't get the rest or sleep we need. But rest is important, not only for the body but for the mind. Sleep is important. Look at your dog. After he plays for a while, he'll lay down and take a nice nap to recharge his battery. Everyone needs sufficient time to recharge.

Be Loyal: Everyone appreciates loyalty, whether its in a relationship, a job or anything else. We want to know we have another person's complete loyalty. Well, who's more loyal than a dog? He'll follow you anywhere. No matter what you want to do--walk, play, swim, eat, sleep, run--he'll be happy to join in. He's there for you 24/7. He's never too busy to spend time with you.

Forgive: You have to yell at your dog sometimes; often its necessary, sometimes it isn't and you just took your bad mood out on your little friend. They'll be sad but they won't hold a grudge. 15 minutes later, its like it never happened. Dogs don't keep bringing up your mistakes over-and-over, accusing you and demanding an apology or issuing ultimatums. Once its done, its done and they forgive you. Dogs aren't like your angry teenage daughter who tells you she hates you because you had a fight about her staying out late and sulks for days. Dogs forgive and forget.

Learn How to Accept:People are often uncomfortable with being the recipient of kindness. If someone does us a kindness, we'll say 'I owe you one". If someone treats you to lunch, you'll say, "Let me treat you tomorrow." We seem to think there needs to be some payback for every favor done for us. Dogs don't feel that way. When you feed your dog, he doesn't worry about how to pay you back. He just accepts that he's worthy of this act of generosity.

Enjoy the Outdoors: In modern times, we spend so much time in the office and much of our leisure time is spent on the computer or watching TV. Its a big, beautiful world out there and we should enjoy the outdoors, whether it's a walk in the park or a stroll down the avenue. Dogs LOVE to go outside. Just rattle your dogs leash and you'll see how fast he runs to the door, waiting to get outside. Dogs appreciate being outside in the fresh air and sunshine.

Enjoy your food: Some people can be very picky and fussy about their food. Everything has to be just so. We don't want that burger if it isn't well-done enough. Learn from your dog. No matter what you give him, he'll gulp it down like it was the greatest meal ever and then beg you for more. Wouldn't you love to cook for a person like that?

Don't be Self-Conscious: We're all image obsessed and we worry about what other people will think of us. Well, dogs don't bother with all that. Do you think a dog cares about what people are saying about him when he's not around? A dog will take a nap in the middle of a crowd or lay down on the sidewalk, without any fear of who'll think he's lazy or rude or crude. Dogs do what they want to do and they don't care how it looks to someone else.

Don't be judgemental: We tend to be very judgmental and critical about other people. Dogs don't care what color, religion, height or weight your are. They don't care if you're smart or dumb. They don't care if you're rich or poor or attractive or ugly. Dogs know how to love unconditionally.

Be Honest: People can be very phony. They say one thing to your face and another behind your back. But you know how a dogs feels about you. If he likes you, he'll greet you eagerly. If he doesn't, he'll bark or growl at you. There's no pretense in a dog. You know where you stand.

Make time for play: We're all very busy and that makes us stressed out. We all need to unwind. The more complex and busy our life is, the more we need the simplicity of playtime. We need to do something fun once in a while. Well, dogs understand that better than anyone. Who loves to play more than a dog? A dog will play fetch for hours. Recreation is important.

Enjoy the simple things in life: We all have lofty goals and we tend to take the little things for granted. We're easily disappointed when we don't get the big things we want. We don't appreciate the simple pleasures the way a dog does. Look how excited a dog gets just by taking a ride in the car, or getting a new bone to chew on, or going out for a walk. Dogs take pleasure in the tiniest things. They don't ask for much. Give him a chew toy and he's in heaven.

The most important lessons I've ever learned, I learned from watching dogs.

Rob




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    • JenJen0703 profile image

      Jennifer McLeod 5 years ago from Battle Creek, Michigan

      Amazing article, from one dog owner to another. I have owned dogs for years. Most of them were rescue dogs. My Lucky dog is 7 years old, and I have had him since he was 6 weeks old. I will have him until he dies. I understand every word of this argument, and honestly? If I had to make a choice (since I am single and independent), I would chose my dog over my man. Why? For the reasons stated above, only dogs can love unconditionally in my eyes. And God! Voted up, and all 5 scores (1st time I have done that for any hubber), shared, and linked to my article about understanding dogs' languages.

    • Just Ask Susan profile image

      Susan Zutautas 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I don't know what I would do without my 2 dogs. Enjoyed your hub very much.

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 5 years ago from Deep South, USA

      Terrific article and all true! I learned my dog-inspired lessons late in life, as I never had a pet of my own until my early sixties. My eyes were truly opened when my dog came into my life and I learned the true meaning of all the characteristics of which you wrote--especially loyalty, not holding a grudge and unconditional love.

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi JenJen; I'm so glad you liked the hub. I often prefer the company of dogs over people. They are so loving.

      Thanks for the link and I'll check out your hub about dog languages.

      Rob

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Susan; Say hello to your two dogs for me. glad you liked the hub.

      Rob

    • Robwrite profile image
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      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Jayewisdom; It must have been wonderful having a pet for the first time. They're great company and great teachers. There's nothing like a dog.

      Thanks for reading,

      Rob

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 5 years ago from Houston, Texas

      All I can say is "Amen!" Dogs are great! People should all be so wonderful. Up and awesome votes.

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Peggy. I agree, dogs are great and we can learn a lot from them.

      Thanks for reading,

      Rob

    • jeyaramd profile image

      jeyaramd 5 years ago from Mississauga, Ontario

      That is so true. Dogs are innocent and thoughtful. Dogs are wonderful companions. They teach us so much about the meaning of love. Sometimes, we may feel guilty that we are giving the dog as much as they give us. Dogs are alot better than some people in many ways. I do wish people can learn from their dogs the true value of life.

    • dingyskipper profile image

      Carolyn 5 years ago from Northamptonshire

      excellent

    • Millionaire Tips profile image

      Shasta Matova 5 years ago from USA

      Great hub - well said. I can learn a great deal from my dog. Thanks for the reminder.

    • Jade Evans profile image

      Jade Evans 5 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      This is a wonderful hub, great principles to live by!

    • VendettaVixen profile image

      VendettaVixen 5 years ago from Ireland

      My God... Rob, you've just described my best friend. I don't know what I'd do without my guide dog, Ulan. Sure, he's a working dog, but he's also a playful pooch who is happy to sit with me when I'm down, play fetch with me, go for a walk whenever it best suits me, and take a break when I need to take forty winks.

      I especially loved how you mentioned the lack of judgement when it comes to canines. I've always thought we need to be more like dogs in that respect, and stop focusing on skin colour, how pretty/handsome a person is, and what their religious and political views are.

      This may be one of the best hubs I've ever read. I'd just like to point out that this is the first ever hub I've given all five ratings to, also.

      Keep up the excellent work, mate.

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Jeyaramd; True, dogs are so full of love, they make for good teachers. They seem to appreciate life in a way we don't.

      thanks a lot of stopping by,

      Rob

    • Robwrite profile image
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      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Dingy skipper; thanks. Glad you liked it.

      Rob

    • Robwrite profile image
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      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi millionaire tips; Glad to remind people how much dogs have to teach us.

      Thanks for commenting,

      Rob

    • Robwrite profile image
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      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Vendetta vixen; (Great user name, by the way) Guide dogs are amazing. They are so smart.

      Dogs are great because they'll do whatever you want to do, whenever you want to do it. They're great companions.

      Dogs are way ahead of us in their ability to see past color or religion or things like that. I wish more people would learn from them.

      Say hello to Ulan for me,

      Rob

    • Rosie writes profile image

      Rosie writes 5 years ago from Virginia

      Great article. My 15 year German Shephard was put down last year because his body had aged to the point where he couldn't stand up or walk, but he seemed so young in every other way - he did not want to leave us. So I would add to your list, "Live Life to the Fullest". We miss him tremendously.

    • Robwrite profile image
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      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Rosie; So sorry about your German Shepherd. It's so hard when we lose them. They're like family. And you're right, they do live life to the fullest, enjoying everything they do with a sense of joyous abandon that humans don't have.

      Thank you for sharing,

      Rob

    • Robwrite profile image
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      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Jade; I agree, they are good principals to live by. We can learn from our furry friends.

      Thanks for commenting,

      Rob

    • FloraBreenRobison profile image

      FloraBreenRobison 5 years ago

      I have my own issues with some of these. Regarding the acceptance of gifts. I know a woman from school who had the opposite problem. She wasn't willing to give anything without getting something in return. Only she didn't tell you that. She expected you to recipricate via mind reading that this was necessary. Despite being friends, she considered it a burden to drive me to rehearsals and I found this out from third parties...

      Great hub. I love the pictures too.

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Flora; That's whats great about dogs. They don't consider it a burden to do thins for you. A dog is happy to fetch you slippers or bring in the paper.

      That person you're talking about sounds like a creep.

      Thanks for reading,

      Rob

    • GusTheRedneck profile image

      Gustave Kilthau 5 years ago from USA

      Robwrite - You summed things up very nicely here. Thanks.

      Gus :-)))

    • Robwrite profile image
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      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Thanks Gus; I'm happy you agree.

      I appreciate the comments,

      Rob

    • Millionaire Tips profile image

      Shasta Matova 5 years ago from USA

      Rob, I have a hub that lists my favorite hubs I've read this week, and yours is on the list. Merry Christmas.

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Thank you, MT.; I'm honored.

      Rob

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 5 years ago

      ...well I wouldn't say that I am a cat lover over being a dog lover (just because I have two cats and they are my best friends) .....all god's creature great and small are beautiful in their own way and this hub subject and world class presentation is a beauty in itself - and will most definitely be posted on my Facebook page with a direct link back here - my page there is starting to look like the Robwrite chronicles - lol lol - happy boxing day at lake erie time 1:09pm and I sincerely hope you had a nice safe and happy Christmas - was Angelina Jolie under your tree this year?

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Colin; Thanks so much for the kind words. I love cats, too, and both have a lot to teach us about love and life. I appreciate you're linking my hub up yet again.

      Sadly, Angelina was not under the tree but maybe she'll come down the chimney before the New Year,

      Always great to hear from you,

      Happy holidays,

      Rob

    • Amy Becherer profile image

      Amy Becherer 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      I completely relate to your excellent tribute to the humanity of dogs. In good times and bad, my Scottish Terrier, MacGregor, loves me. Before my layoff, I glammed up for work and Mac noticed whenever I got my hair cut and colored. Now, more like a baglady than a bombshell, he loves me the same. The closest we humans come to unconditional love is that from our canine companions. MacGregor is my best, most lovable, friend. I wish, in these poor economic times, the vets showed half the compassion their patients exhibit.

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Amy; MacGregor sounds like a great friend. A dog will stick by you through good times and bad. I agree that Vets should be as loving as their patients.

      Thanks a lot for the comments,

      Rob

    • Mark Ewbie profile image

      Mark Ewbie 5 years ago from Euroland

      Love the sentiment in this article, and I love my dogs. Complete trust and knowing where you're at with someone, even if that someone is 'only' a dog. In my opinion, the best animal in the world, ever, by a country mile.

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Mark; They certainly are the best animal in the world, to me. (sorry cat lovers.) Its great to have a loving relationship where you know where you stand.

      Thanks for stopping by,

      Rob

    • ITcoach profile image

      ITcoach 5 years ago from United States

      Great article.I like the company of dogs over people. They are so loving.Thanks for sharing.

      Voted up and awesome.

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Thanks ITcoach; Glad you liked the article. I often prefer to spend time with dogs rather than with most people I know.

      Thanks for reading,

      Rob

    • princesswithapen profile image

      princesswithapen 5 years ago

      Dogs seem to have mastered the art of living a happy life, don't you think? This post is a very warm and unique twist to approach towards life - from a dog's point of view, who'd have thought? Nicely done. I'm sharing it.

      Princesswithapen

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Princess; Yes, dogs really know how to live in the moment and be happy. I wish we all could do that.

      Glad you liked it. Thanks for the kind words.

      Rob

    • rodlyalcide profile image

      rodlyalcide 5 years ago from Miami, FL

      Great hub you guys can also look at my hub on how to make dogs stop scratching the furniture

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Thank you, rodlyalcide.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

      Hi thank you so much for sharing this gem and obviously by the way I am not the only who thinks this by the amount of comments.

      Take care and have a great day.

      Eddy.

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Hi Eiddwen; Yes, lots of people agree that dogs are great role models for us stubborn humans. Glad you liked it.

      Thanks for coming by,

      Rob

    • Lady_E profile image

      Elena 4 years ago from London, UK

      That's a lovely Hub to read. Dogs are wonderful and it's also amazing how they help people who are blind. They are very reliable pets.

    • Robwrite profile image
      Author

      Rob 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      I agree, Lady E, they are wonderful.

      Thanks for reading,

      Rob

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

      I read this hub 8 months ago and enjoyed it. I just read it again and, not only did I enjoy it all over again, something you wrote really caught my eye: "Wouldn't you like to cook for a person like that?"

      Well, I do. Once a week I cook my dog's food for the upcoming seven days so I know what she's eating and that it's both healthful and safe. She's worth it! I even wrote a hub about it.

      Voted Up and Awesome.

      Jaye

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