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Last Updated on January 3, 2018

10 Reasons Why Dogs Are Man’s Best Friend

10 Reasons Why Dogs Are Man’s Best Friend

To put it simply, dogs are awesome. Whether they’re begging for your food, barking at their leash to convince you to take them on a walk, or simply greeting you when you get home, dogs do all of the little things that put smiles on faces around the world. What are some of the more endearing reasons why dogs are and always will be man’s best friend? Read on…

1. Dogs have terrible short-term memories.

    One of the crappier aspects of human friends is that, generally speaking, they remember all of the times you’ve wronged them and will hold it against you for the rest of their lives. Dogs, on the other hand, have the “gift” of poor memory. That means you can mess with their tail, play keep away with their food, and tug on their ears to your heart’s content, even if it annoys them. You get to have your fun, and your dog will forget all about it and treat you like their best bud within a couple minutes! It’s truly one of the only win-win scenarios in life.

    2. Dogs have great long-term memories.

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      While your pooch will forget you pulling on their tail, they won’t forget the connection they share with you, and, if you are good to them, you will leave a lasting impact on them that they’ll never shake off. Take, for instance, my dachshund Chester. From a young age he was babied by my mom, and now, nearly twelve years later, he never leaves her side. Unfortunately this sort of thing goes both ways, as I used to mess with him quite a bit on a consistent basis (actually I don’t think it had anything to do with me; he’s just too attached to my mom to like anyone else), and so nowadays he barks in my general direction whenever words of any sort come forth from my mouth.

      3. Dogs have your back.

        Even though my dog Chester isn’t exactly a huge fan of me, he’ll still take me over strangers. Now, when a dog actually likes me (like my dog Sally does), they’ll defend you even more vehemently. Whenever a creepy solicitor or girl scout cookie peddling entrepreneur knocks on your door, your dog will be right there beside you barking at them as you tremble behind a corner, too afraid to answer. Of course, this can go a little overboard, like this one time when the UPS guy showed up and tried to put a box on my porch, only to be chased away by three dogs rushing out to defend the homeland. Understandably, he now leaves packages by the front gate instead.

        4. Dogs can mimic your emotions.

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          Based on the tone of your voice and your body language, your dog will do its darnedest to emulate your current state of mind. When you’re sad, they’ll look at you with big doe eyes. When your angry, the fur will rise on their backs and they’ll start barking and growling at inanimate objects. Whereas humans might not respond to your emotional upswings and downswings in a way that you’d prefer, dogs will always be there whether you’re thrilled, depressed, or anywhere in between.

          5. Dogs act as mini-dishwashers.

            Ok, that sounds a little gross, but hear me out. Ever finish dinner and have too little food on your plate to save, but too much that it’d be a hassle to wash it in the sink? Well, here’s where your dog comes in! Just hand the plate over and let them polish it off. They’ll be happy, and you’ll have an easier time doing the dishes!

            6. Dogs are great motivational tools.

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              In case you’re afraid that using your dog as a dishwasher will lead to them becoming overweight, fear not. Dogs prefer being active, at least when they’re younger. Make use of their abundance of energy and take them on walks, or, if you are super ambitious, runs! They’ll be tuckered out and supremely amused, and you’ll be on track to becoming a healthier person!

              7. Dogs are freaking smart!

                Intelligence varies depending on the kind of breed you get, but overall, dogs are some of the most intuitive animals around. This is demonstrated by their multiple facial expressions (I especially like the one where they tilt their head and look at you quizzically), their ability to deviously hide toys in the strangest of places, and more. One of my dogs is a miniature schnauzer, and he cracks me up with how smart he is. I have a few tennis balls by my desk (which I don’t use for tennis; I just toss em in the air whenever I’m concentrating), and he knows this. So, what he does is go on little reconnaissance missions into my room. If I’m in there, he pretends to look out my window or inspect my bed, while simultaneously stealing a few glances at my tennis balls (which usually lay haphazardly on the floor). Then, he’ll leave, but only after making a mental checklist of where the balls are. Later in the day, or it could even be several days later, I’ll go downstairs and see him happily chewing at one of my tennis balls, a mischievous look in his eye as he gazes up at me. It’s hilarious every time! He planned a stealth mission, waited for me to leave my room, retrieved the ball, and escaped without me noticing. Sounds like he should be made an honorary Navy Seal…

                8. Dogs won’t allow you to eat alone ever again.

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                  Who wants to eat alone? Sure it’s nice sometimes, but even as an introvert I’ll admit to liking a nice dinner with other people (only if I enjoy their company of course). Well, fear not, because if you have a dog you’ll always have company for dinner. Of course, they’ll be sitting by your knee, panting in your face, asking for your food, but it’s company all the same! Recently I went to go eat alone in my room, when I heard a distinct huffing and puffing outside my door. Turns out my 14 year old dachshund Sally had dragged her fat little body all the way up two flights of stairs to be there while I ate (presumably because she expected me to give her some of my Chinese food — oh and by the way she looked exactly like the corgi pictured in the above gif). After you’ve had a dog, it’s difficult to eat without the incessant barking in the background!

                  9. Dogs won’t leave you hanging.

                    Ever make plans with a human friend, only to find out that they canceled at the last minute? Well, no need to worry about that when you have a dog. They don’t know how to use phones, as far as I know, so there’s no reason to fear them calling up the neighbor’s poodle to see if they want to hit up some local bars, abandoning you to your TV and a paltry, lonesome microwave dinner. They’re there for you, and you alone!

                    10. Dogs know how to live.

                      To put it simply, dogs behave like humans who aren’t concerned about the more ridiculous aspects of sentient existence. For example, paying the bills, getting an education, running errands, dealing with annoying people all of the time, etc. All they want to do is wake up, say hi to you, run around, play with their toys, eat, nap, eat again, nap again, say hi again, and sleep. Is that so bad?! Sure, we humans have certain responsibilities thanks to our “intelligence,” but it sure would be nice if we could all go through life like dogs; care free and completely sure of ourselves. At the very least, if you have a dog, you can live vicariously through them. As long as you know what you’re getting into, it’s totally worth it!

                      Featured photo credit: DSCN7900.jpg/ pippalou via mrg.bz

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                      Last Updated on December 2, 2018

                      How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

                      How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

                      Ebb and flow. Contraction and expansion. Highs and lows. It’s all about the cycles of life.

                      The entire course of our life follows this up and down pattern of more and then less. Our days flow this way, each following a pattern of more energy, then less energy, more creativity and periods of greater focus bookended by moments of low energy when we cringe at the thought of one more meeting, one more call, one more sentence.

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                      The key is in understanding how to use the cycles of ebb and flow to our advantage. The ability to harness these fluctuations, understand how they affect our productivity and mood and then apply that knowledge as a tool to improve our lives is a valuable strategy that few individuals or corporations have mastered.

                      Here are a few simple steps to start using this strategy today:

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                      Review Your Past Flow

                      Take just a few minutes to look back at how your days and weeks have been unfolding. What time of the day are you the most focused? Do you prefer to be more social at certain times of the day? Do you have difficulty concentrating after lunch or are you energized? Are there days when you can’t seem to sit still at your desk and others when you could work on the same project for hours?

                      Do you see a pattern starting to emerge? Eventually you will discover a sort of map or schedule that charts your individual productivity levels during a given day or week.  That’s the first step. You’ll use this information to plan your days going forward.

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                      Schedule According to Your Flow Pattern

                      Look at the types of things you do each day…each week. What can you move around so that it’s a better fit for you? Can you suggest to your team that you schedule meetings for late morning if you can’t stand to be social first thing? Can you schedule detailed project work or highly creative tasks, like writing or designing when you are best able to focus? How about making sales calls or client meetings on days when you are the most social and leaving billing or reports until another time when you are able to close your door and do repetitive tasks.

                      Keep in mind that everyone is different and some things are out of our control. Do what you can. You might be surprised at just how flexible clients and managers can be when they understand that improving your productivity will result in better outcomes for them.

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                      Account for Big Picture Fluctuations

                      Look at the bigger picture. Consider what happens during different months or times during the year. Think about what is going on in the other parts of your life. When is the best time for you to take on a new project, role or responsibility? Take into account other commitments that zap your energy. Do you have a sick parent, a spouse who travels all the time or young children who demand all of your available time and energy?

                      We all know people who ignore all of this advice and yet seem to prosper and achieve wonderful success anyway, but they are usually the exception, not the rule. For most of us, this habitual tendency to force our bodies and our brains into patterns of working that undermine our productivity result in achieving less than desired results and adding more stress to our already overburdened lives.

                      Why not follow the ebb and flow of your life instead of fighting against it?

                        Featured photo credit: Nathan Dumlao via unsplash.com

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