Curated Leadership for Today's World

let's do it doggie style!

Posted on 17 May 2011


doggie-styleThe divine canine is my hero and muse. This past January, after 10 years of living in solitude and bliss with three cats and my soul-dog, Mr. Blue, I introduced a new adoptee into our pack. Ruby Red was a six-year-old Aussie purebred whose previous life was spent as a breeding dog in Kentucky.


I voraciously read how to introduce a new dog into the mix. She was cat-approved: Check! The existing male dog approved: Check! Let the dogs meet on neutral turf before introducing into the home: Check!


By day three, however, the novelty had worn off and the quest for dominance erupted. They had to establish their own “barking” order, which they did with much snarling and snapping, but without, thankfully, bloodshed or trips to the vet’s office.


After a couple of months, Mr. Blue and Ruby Red have worked through their issues and have actually become quite chummy. The entire household knows that Mr. Blue is the number-one son, but he allows Ruby Red to be her vocal, bossy self. I even see them wrestle a little, assume the same napping positions, communicate by making the same shepherd sounds, and even give each other little kisses on the muzzle when they pass. Each day they become more and more alike and comfortable, like an old married couple who intimately knows each other’s routines and thoughts.


So why do so many humans behave in the opposite fashion? We meet, fall into the gooey honeymoon phase, and eventually get married only to become disenchanted and spend the rest of our years becoming more and more hostile to one another. Humans are on an exact opposite trajectory than hounds!


We misrepresent and hide our true aggressions until we eventually let the snarling truth come out when we are inextricably, legally, and morally linked. If we tried to be more guileless and honest, we wouldn’t be less than forthright. We wouldn’t try to change one another. And our lives would be full of a lot more unconditional puppy love.


We need to take a lesson from man’s best friend and learn how to lay it all on the table within the first few meetings. Display right from the beginning our motives and temperament. Define our boundaries and who we are and demand respect. After all, everything surfaces eventually; the sooner the better. Ruff said.

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