The dog in this picture is not my dog. I love this dog, and she visits me often. She is my grandpup. Sometimes, well–frequently–I wish I didn’t have to depend on her for all of my dog needs.

I have cats, and probably won’t have a dog as a pet in the future. This does not stop me from imagining what kind of dog I would get. You know, to have in my pied a terre in New York or to take on walks with me along the Seine. Oh yes, and to hang around with me right here in Dayton, Ohio.

A small dog. One that won’t pull a person over when sighting squirrels. I like dachshunds. They are assertive little dogs. I especially like the wire haired variety. But I have been told that they don’t have dachshund personalities, because they have been bred with terriers in order to get the wire hair. So that kind of defeats the purpose.

What about poodles? They mix poodles in with every breed, it seems. This mixing makes a new, cuter version of the original. Who doesn’t love labradoodles? They are taking this too far, in my opinion. I met a woman walking a very odd dog–tall, skinny, and with a curly beard and wild eyes. I asked what breed he was, and he was a Doodleman–a doberman poodle mix. Not a good look. But I would consider a schnoodle. This mix of schnauzer and poodle is very cute.

I see myself, though, strolling down the sidewalk with a small, brown dog of indeterminate breed. This dog would have coarse hair shooting out all over his body, wise round eyes, an eager trot, and friendly wag. He would greet neighbors and strangers alike with enthusiasm, increasing my popularity quotient a hundredfold. He would know a few tricks, and live to a ripe old age. He would be devoted to me and I to him. I would give him an absolutely charming and imaginative name like Seltzer or Toasty, but he would end up with a nickname like Snoots. He would sleep in our bed, adore our cat/s, and my husband would be so happy that I talked him into our having a dog again.

I run variations of this fantasy in my mind on a frequent basis, with the dog changing from small and hairy  to large but lazy. In all of these daydreams, the dogs’ feet remain free of mud, they only need to poop once a day, they go out in the backyard without the need of a fence, they never bark at the mailman, they stay off the sofas, and they don’t shed.

I also have fantasies of being able to eat cake every night for dessert.


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