Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Heart of a Wolf

When I arrived home from work today, I noticed a young lady standing by her car. As I walked by, her purse yipped at me and I thought it passing strange until I realized that she had a tiny Chihuahua in there.

Now, I do like dogs. I grew up in the country and we always seemed to have two or more dogs at any given time, despite my dad’s best efforts at running them over.

NOTE: My dad was a terrible driver and he did, in fact, hit and kill three of our dogs over the course of my young life. He felt terrible about it every time, but big truck + darting dogs = occasional accident. He did once get mugged by a deer though, so there’s a certain symmetry.

Where was I? Oh yes . . .

So, I was walking by and this little, tiny, fly-speck of a dog, in a valiant effort to protect his mistress, yipped at me. And I suddenly felt really bad for the thing.

This Chihuahua’s ancestors were wolves. Big, strong animals that hunted deer and bison and insurance salesman. These were the animal equivalent of a biker gang. When they rolled through the woods, everybody boarded up their shops and hid, ‘cause somebody was gonna get eaten. Just picture Marlon Brando in The Wild Ones as a wolf and you get the idea.

No, wait, that’s dumb. Don’t do that.

My point is that inside this Chihuahua beat the heart of a wolf. It didn’t know it was just a tiny fashion accessory. Deep down, it was a hundred pounds of growling, snarling, Harley riding, chain-smoking, leather-wearing, skirt-chasing, steak-with-a-side-of-steak eating badass.

In that moment, I reconsidered everything I ever thought about Chihuahuas and other yippy dogs. They can’t help it. Their savage nature calls out to them, but they’re stuck wearing sweaters and peeing when they get over-excited. It’s not their fault that they were bred down to fun-size. They yearn for the hunt and the open woods, blissfully unaware that the average squirrel could beat them up and take their lunch money.

Seriously, squirrels would totally do it. When you’ve been at the bottom of the food chain for as long as they have, you take your cheap shots when you can.

And so, I hereby apologize to Chihuahuas and all the other tiny, yippy dogs out there for all the mean things I’ve said about them over the years. Also, sorry about that whole ‘breeding you into McNuggets with legs’ thing.

Could you please stop yipping now?



Jerron said...

Yap dogs. One of my pet peeves. Honestly, whichever moron bred these things is almost as bad as the morons who use them as fashion accessories. I wonder how many of them end up abandoned after the owner finds out you actually need to *care* for them? Or worse, they might just put them to sleep.

Me, I figure if you want a dog, don't get a cat. One of mine just died (note I don't say 'went to sleep'- you really confuse kids that way, and my niece didn't want to go to bed after her dog 'went to sleep' and got buried). She was an 85# pit bull mix, and no one messed with my house, ever. Gentlest dog you ever saw, loved the kids, and would protect them even from me. (She would bite my sleeve and pull my arm away from tickling the kids when they screamed.) You just can't get that from a noisy fashion accessory. Of course, it helped that the other dog has a problem with people coming too close and barks her head off. One dog, 85# pit bull with wicked growl, the other one is a big dog with a wicked bark (as in, shake the trees and rattle the windows).

I think these fashion dogs are fine as long as they're taken care of- but why do you not have a cat, honestly?

"gunner" said...

another pit bull fancier? i've got four, a mother and three of her puppies. "ranger" the male of the litter is my pet, ("ranger leads the way.") and like your dog he's a good natured pooch who likes to sit with me at the computer, or take up half the couch when i'm watching t.v.. they all co-exist with two cats and two ferrets.

Jonnalyhn Wolfcat Hall said...

Jerron, they don't have cats in that case because cats won't put up with being dressed up as much!

I feel sorry for all of the animals treated as accessories actually. Saturday I had to take a maybe 6 week old bunny to the pound as it had been dumped in front of my place--perhaps the folks who thought it was a PERFECT Easter gift couldn't deal with it? One white shivering lump o' fur barely larger than my fists, pathetically grateful to be picked up out of the cold wet grass, dried off and warmed up.

Me, I'm owned by a menagerie of animals-all rescues--2 corgis, 1 chow/shepherd mix, cats and a corn snake.

Shrill yapping annoys me sure, but not as much as the 'owners' who decide that they can't deal with it and debark their dogs or leave them tied up on a short lead at all hours. Or but we HAVE to let them have babies...but then dump the (maybe) weaned animals in the alley or worse.

Okay, stepping away from the rant. But the pound had my info on file because of all the rescues I drop off, and that's just sad.

Jason Janicki said...

Yeah, I hear you, Jerron. We had a Rott that was just as sweet as could be. I never worried about my mom when she had Blitz, as few people would mess with a 90# Rott.

I've heard a lot of people defending Pits. I've never really known one, so I can't say 'yeah' or 'nay' on them, but I firmly believe it's in how they're raised.

That was good of you, Jonnalhyn. I'm the same way, I'm a sucker for the cute little fuzzy things :)

Jerron said...

Good rant. :)

Yeah, I got too many, but at least I'm down from the 2 dozen I used to have. Wallaby ate through the shed wall yesterday and scratched / bruised her face up pretty good. I have no clue why the bunny didn't take off, he could easily fit through the hole but didn't.

And Pits- they're just like anyother dog, it's all in how they're raised. That breed just happens to be particularly well suited to ripping people apart, so any nasty ones get tagged. You never hear about the horrible Golden Retriever that bit the kid, even though it likely happens 10x as much. Because they don't do a lot of damage before someone pulls them off.

I had a great Dane, so good with the kids, she'd slow her full-tilt charge to go around the kids (about 3 at the time) and then go full speed again when past. She thought the neighbor's yard was hers, too, though, and picked his dog up by the ribs and tossed him like a rag doll. With my wife solidly attached to her collar still, too. I had to grab her and plant my feet. We had to get rid of her or chain her up. So we found a nice home with no other dogs around, for her. We didn't put her to sleep for instincual stuff that you gotta deal with.