OK, I have to admit, if you fancy yourself an attention-seeker, the canine life is rather satisfying.

Whether strolling the neighborhood with my human pets, or lounging with my pals in the park (long gone are the days of running … too rough on my osteoarthritis), I cannot stride ten feet without some stranger gushing, asking my humans if they can pet me — as if my arthritis-free Two-Leggers had the power to make such a decision.

But I digress.

At every turn I have new folks turning their attention to me, fawning over my every need.

And that’s when the gibberish starts.

“Oh, look-at-the-big-doggie!”

“Hello!  Hell-O!  You’re such a good boy, aren’t you?  Yes, you are!”

“Hi, Pookie!”


I cannot tell which is worse — the puppyhood memories revived by such babytalk (“Oh … my … goodness, where-am-I-what’s-happening-why-am-I-all-wet?!”) …

… or the feeling of self worth oozing out my paws.  (“Am I incompetent?  Am I visibly drooling?  Have I unknowingly fulfilled my lifelong fantasy of marking the human’s mother-in-law’s foul-smelling sofa?” … Imagine one of those plug-in scent machines, a dryer sheet, and spicy pepper all rolled into one.  Yeah, you’d take a swipe at overwhelming that stench, too.)

It’s enough to make a self-respecting dog let a frisbee go unretrieved.

Humans.  Please.

I know I’m a dog.  In my years, I have grasped this concept.

But I am not a human child.  I am not helpless.

Is it too much to ask that you not speak down to me as if I were?