Can We, Can We… Please!

She’s right but that doesn’t make me appreciate her ruling. Her convincing argument is multipronged, “Who do you think is going to end up taking care of it?” “Do you want someone else to take care of?” The final blow, an uppercut, “What about the expense?” I am down and will not be getting up.

As much as I hate to admit it, my wife is probably right. She will end up taking care of it, I don’t want another full time appendage, and money is already tight with the two humans who double as our children. The discussion ends. We will not be getting a dog.

This is not an unfamiliar discussion as we have it periodically. We both agree it could be good for the children. However, we can’t get past the issues noted above, so the conversation ends – resolved, pretty much. In many ways, this is a case of déjà vu for me that goes back many years. I wanted a dog when I was a child. It was a great debate as only half of the family wanted a dog. Ultimately, however, we did not get the dog. You know why not? My mother made the same case my wife makes. She was probably right too.

So, when I raised the great dog debate again this past week, I did not have much hope that my wife would be swayed. In fact, I only brought it up half-heartedly. You see I recently read the best-selling book A Dog’s Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron. The book is told from the perspective of a dog and follows Bailey (the dog) through three reincarnations. If dogs are even half as smart, loving, and intuitive as Bailey is, I would be impressed. The concern that Bailey shows for his owner is touching. Bailey’s only purpose seems to make his owner happy – whether that means accompanying him, lifting up his spirits, or saving him from troubling circumstances. I am a dog-liker and I enjoyed the book, so if any of you are dog-lovers, I highly recommend it.

A Dog’s Purpose inspired me to bring up the dog question again. However, if I really want my wife to overturn her ruling, I should encourage her to read the book. I know she is weak; she had a dog growing up — “Habibi” and she still speaks about him with some affection. Maybe, she wouldn’t even mind taking care of it – after all, this way she can say “I told you so.” Now, I just have to get the kids on my side. Say after me boys, “can we, can we – please.”

41 thoughts on “Can We, Can We… Please!

  1. You know, I think the reason why our family never got a dog is as simple as that: we couldn’t agree on a breed. LOL
    Now I’m happy with two cats.
    But in one thing you’re right: pets are good for kids – no – two things: your wife will end up taking care of the dog. *chuckle*

    • Interesting – I don’t really think about breed. I just wouldn’t want a tiny dog. I fully acknowledge my wife would end up taking care of it.


  2. Pets are great for kids, but there is a lot of commitment on the part of the parents too.

    We have a dog, whom we rescued 6 years ago; a 3-year-old cat; a 9-week-old kitten and (gulp) I just agreed to foster two 4-day-old abandoned kittens. I think I need your wife to come visit me! A voice of reason is obviously missing in our home.

    (I hope you win one day.)

    • Wow, that’s a lot of cats.
      Part of me is afraid I will win. I don’t want to take care of the dog. I think, ideally, I would like to be the grandparent to the dog. I get to enjoy it when I want and have little responsibility.

      • It is a lot of cats, but the kids are learning great life lessons.

        You could always “borrow” a friend’s dog for a couple of days. Maybe do a pet time-share. You have the dog every other weekend and Wednesdays and they have the dog the rest of the time.
        Be prepared to split the cost of a canine therapist thought.;)

  3. Oh dear, we have that same conversation around here–well, used to anyway. The boys are getting old enough it’s not much of an issue anymore. But the funny thing is, I have that conversation with myself, when I think I want a dog. I can fully appreciate both sides. 🙂

    • My mom says she stills feels maybe she should have cracked.She says it would have been good for my brothers and I. I don’t blame her – she would have done all the work. When did the conversation stop?


      • About six months ago. We have a cat, and I realized they don’t take care of the cat, and that’s only feeding him and cleaning the litter box. It’s a nag every day. I couldn’t add walking the dog too. It had to be something I was willing to do, and I’ve got enough on my plate without adding a dog, so I eventually decided my husband was right.

      • Yes, the mom does all the work. Even though they SWEAR they will take care of the pets, they don’t unless there is a a lot of nagging and privilege suspension. Frankly, it’s easier just to say no. 🙂

  4. I have to introduce a side of the argument that does not yet seem represented (which may have been part of your discussions with your wife). Pets introduce a new dimension to your life. It is indescribably beautiful and infinitely rewarding. (disclaimer: just make sure you don’t get a crazy pet or one that pees/poop’s everywhere!). If I had to relive my life again, I wouldn’t do it without my dog (deceased) or my cat (current) and I would want only THEM. I am glad my daughter has a pet and someday we will get her a dog (when current cat is deceased). They teach so many things; compassion, patience, and responsibility (make the kids walk the dog once a day or go with as family time!). It forces you to slow down and take the time to appreciate little things and to remember that there is more than just you and your problems and that other people (and creatures) need the same things you do. And they are just so damned cute!
    My vote is yes for the dog (but go to a local shelter!).

  5. Ooh, difficult one. We never had a dog whilst I was growing up, mum and dad never liked them and to be honest I wasn’t really that bothered. When I met hubby though he had 3 dogs and I got kind of hooked. They are certainly a big commitment, we can’t do things like stop over at friend’s houses after dinner as we have to get back for the dogs, vets bills can be expensive and our dogs are like kids, they make a lot of noise and always want to play(and eat)! That said, i wouldn’t be without them, they’re loving and lots of fun, keep us fairly fit thanks to the exercising that we give them and they’re totally loyal and guard the house when we are out. I’m wondering if perhaps the breed that you choose could be the key to an agreed decision? Good luck with your quest!

    • I don’t believe its a difficult decision. From reading your post, you are very much an animal lover (check out the book if you get a chance – you’ll enjoy it). I don’t think breed is the issue – haven’t even considered that. Thanks for commenting.


  6. There are plenty of reasons for not wanting a dog. Life is short, though, and a dog is a bundle of dependable, selfless, unconditional love well worth the effort.

  7. This scenario has been played out in countless homes in the USA and I guess elsewhere. Certainly was played out in mine. Of course, families often get beyond it and get the dog. Perhaps the wife realizes that maybe the kids might take more responsibility if she insists on it and the kids are ready. Above and beyond that, the advantages of having a dog in a family outweigh the disadvantages, or they would never have become “man’s best friend.” Thanks for the recommendation about the book. Can’t wait to read it.!

  8. I haven’t reached that point yet with my kids. But when the question comes, the answer will be “no”. And the next sentence will go something like this, “Daddy is allergic. You don’t want to make him sick, do you?” End of discussion. Although, if it weren’t for my husband’s allergies, I suspect I would be in the same boat as your wife. His allergies serve me well.

  9. I can easily understand both sides but children always have fond memories of their pets once they’ve grown up. I don’t do all the work but I still have to constantly remind my boys to see that their pets are cared for daily.

  10. Hi,
    This is a nice blog posting and says a lot about not giving up. I had to smile. Hope your wife says yes and you get a lucky addition to your family. I love dogs and cats and maybe, one day, I’ll get one of both, so that they can grow together.
    Enjoyed your article.

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