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Pet owner doesn’t find puppy love silly

Updated: July 21, 2012 6:03AM

Q. As the owner of two dogs, I disagree with you about love for a dog that goes too far. When you bring another living creature into your home, it is difficult not to grow to love them as family. To say this is “silly” is only an opinion. I resent anyone telling me that how I feel about my dogs is silly. I too cook for them, kiss them and sleep with them. And my husband feels the same way as I do. Our friends who are not animal lovers do not think less of us nor do we think less of them for not sharing the same feelings. Just because you don’t agree with how someone treats their pets does not mean that they are wrong.

A. You are preaching to the church lady on this one. A dog cherished beyond reason currently snores at Dog Lady’s feet. You may misinterpret. “Silly” is only when dog love hinders or interferes with human relationships.

Q. My wife and I have a 4-year-old Ori pei (pug/shar-pei mix), Kung Pao. He is a very sweet dog and learned housebreaking quickly. However, he is afraid of almost everything, which makes taking him for walks a challenge. If someone across the street closes a car door, for example, he wheels around and starts dragging us back home. It’s not just noises that startle him; the sight of anyone he doesn’t recognize causes him immediate fear. Is there anything we can do?

A. More than anything, a scaredy-cat dog needs your confidence. Instead of allowing Kung Pao to be King Pao and drag you home, continue walking as if no disturbance occurred. Carry a pocket-full of Grade A treats (cooked chicken, freeze-dried liver chunks) to give him a delicious taste of courage. As long as you bow to his wishes, you give him permission to be frightened of his own shadow.

The next time a car door slams, dig in your heels. Tell Kung Pao to sit, give him a tidbit and go on your way.

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