Monday, August 26th has been declared National Dog Day. Love dogs? So do I, that is why I am extremely delighted to celebrate this national holiday!
While we have all become accustomed to the greeting card industry creating numerous holidays how can you go wrong when you designate a day that celebrates all breeds, pure and mixed, and has the public focused on the need to rescue dogs from shelters. This is very near and dear to my heart given the work my parents put in nearly two decades ago to create the first “no kill” shelter in their community in Western Michigan, The Noah Project, and this crew has done amazing things and continues to expand and has saved the lives of hundreds of animals. The highlight was when they actually named the shelter building after my parents. What a wonderful legacy to have.
Likely no coincidence that the CDC came out last week with their latest study that showed that dogs don’t just fill your heart, they actually make it stronger. Many studies have shown that having a pup around is linked to lower blood pressure, reduce cholesterol and helps keep you fit. I know this intimately because rain or shine – Don and I make our way out every morning (even before having a cup of coffee!) to take Cassie for her morning loop. When I come home for work, she and I make a little bit longer loop. Great for her and clears my mind. And then, right before bedtime, we’re off for one more “sniff and drag”.
I also think of my father…at age 84 and now alone, except for his 7 pound pup, Pepper. This rescue pup has rescued him as he made his way through the passing of my mother earlier this year and is the reason for him to get up at least 4 times a day to take Pepper for a walk through the senior community where he lives. It’s hard to really sink into inactivity when there is a small being who depends on you…completely.
Both of my daughters are young professionals, working hard and staying focused but since the apple does not fall far from them tree, they both have golden retriever pups as well – Sawyer and Luna. While having a dog as a young single person is an added challenge, both Leah and Kelsey would say that having their fur babies adds more to their lives. I love watching their careful budgeting that means they spend more on their dogs than on themselves. Dogs teach us selflessness.
Bottom line? It’s really easy in our nation’s Capitol to take yourself and what you do too seriously. While it is apparently only a myth, Harry Truman was quoted as saying “If you want a friend in Washington, get a dog.”