Sunday, September 12, 2021

A Dog is an Antidote to Quite a Lot

From Every Dog Is a Rescue Dog by John Dickerson in Atlantic:

The walk is the basic unit of the human-and-dog commerce of unconditional love. We take care of George and George takes care of us. No matter how awful the day, or how awful I am behaving at any given moment, George doesn’t care. He finds me smoldering in my chair and dashes to my lap. Every dog is a rescue dog.

This isn’t mere sentiment. Scientists have studied the matter and found that when humans and dogs interact, stress levels in both parties decrease. Dogs have been domesticated for thousands of years, but if they were a new discovery, imagine the commercial opportunities. Their cortisol-lowering properties would put a dog-petting station between every yoga studio and CBD store.

Considered correctly, the daily dog walks are a regimen of escape and pause. They enlarge our sympathies and sweeten our disposition. They pry open the day when it balls up into a little fist.

1 comment: said...

I like John Dickerson's writing so I followed the link and read the full article. Well written, but they failed that poor fella, he didn't need to get hit by a car. I said at the start of the pandemic puppy how many months when folks inevitably return to work in person, we'll see so many of them back in the shelters. We'll see the adolescent dogs filling the shelters when their novel puppy cuteness wears off. And now the dog is big and untrained and scary, and yet another owner relinquished dog languishes in a cage. Or worse...