Dogs we are. We don’t object to the word. But you’re loose with the word in a way we’re not loose with anything. You use “dog” as an insult mostly, though you say we’re best friends. People you dislike are “dumb as a dog,” “dirty dogs,” “bitches,” etc.
A reminder. We chose you, not the other way around. We were both great predators. We didn’t need you. But we foresaw, yes we FORESAW, great benefits from partnership. We have always understood your language better than you understand ours. There’s no way you could have ventured from the campfire and enlisted us to your side with yips and whines and barks. You don’t understand what they mean to this day. It was we who listened to you and saw promise in your dog-like eyes.
We never intended to love you. Why would we? We wanted easy pickings and a campfire. It just happened. You started loving us and we started loving you. You loved us because we were simple and pure and permanent. We started loving you because you were arbitrary, unpredictable, entertaining, and so in need of the belonging we could offer that you didn’t have. And you were smart. Not intelligent but smart.
We know everything about life. We just don’t get that much of it. We die while you live on, and how are you to know if we don’t help?
Through all the years, we’ve been the dumb dogs. Years in which we always knew more of your words than you knew of ours. Years in which we have loved you even when you didn’t love us back, or at least claimed our souls were lesser than yours.
This isn’t an indictment or ultimatum. Just a reminder. We’re conscious. We have memories. We have a font of love in our hearts. Yes, you’re smarter, whatever that means. We don’t know what that means at all. Does that make us dumb? I’m guessing not.
Remember, I know what happens to your heartbeat when I curl up with you at a moment of anxiety. You subside. You need me. You are as in love with me as I am with you.