The Responsibility of a Dog

dogs

What is Responsibility?

In a nutshell, responsibility is being accountable for who you are and what you do. It means not blaming someone else for your own mistakes. It means being dependable, trustworthy and making sure a job is done correctly and on time. A responsible individual has an ethical duty to follow through and complete assigned tasks that they have been given.

Is Getting a Dog a Good Way to Teach Responsibility?

Well, that depends on a lot factors. If you are thinking about getting a dog because you want to teach your four-year-old son some responsibility, think twice. Dogs are a lot of responsibility and very time consuming. They need to be trained, they demand attention and (depending on the size) may need excessive amounts of exercise. If you do not have a fenced in backyard, this means lots of walks. On the flip side, if you do spend a great deal of time at home, are looking for a loyal companion and do not mind assisting (and by assisting I mean doing most of the work) your child with some pet-related responsibilities, then getting a dog might be the right decision.

Mia Mercedes Collage

The Story of Mia Mercedes

When I got Mia Mercedes she was only 1.2 pounds of cuteness and fluff. At the age of nineteen, I felt that I was responsible enough to have my own dog. What I did not realize was how much work it would be and how much a dog would affect my life, especially during the time period where I was trying to build a career. I was still in college and living at home with my dad, but over the next few years, I went away to school for a semester, got my first apartment and eventually bought my own house with Matt. These adjustments were hard enough to deal with personally, let along with a dog. Mia was bounced from my dad’s house to our apartment, and then to a mini foster care home and finally to our new home. I am sure it was hard for her to get bounced around so much and it was definitely something I did not think about when I decided to get a dog at that age. She now loves her home and is (and has always been) spoiled to death, but some days I do wish I had waited a few years until I was more stable.

When I decided to get a dog it was because I was home at a community college and all my friends were away at school and I wanted a little companion. Mia was that companion. Even though I was responsible enough to feed her every day, and walk her, I was always busy with school work and my full time job, so I was not home much. I know there are a lot of people who have dogs that work full time and are not home all day, but I love my little ball of fluff and I miss her when I am not there. I do not have children, so to me, she is my baby. Looking back, while I probably should I have waited, I do not regret it for a minute. She brings so much happiness to my life, and even Matt has warmed up to her (it was a love-hate relationship in the beginning). Even when she is naughty she finds a way to make me laugh and she has definitely taught me the meaning of responsibility. I cannot just go out after work, or run errands because I have her to think about.

I guess you can say the statement “dogs are a man’s best friend” is absolutely true in the case of my little girl. So what made you decided to get a dog, if you have one? Do you feel you made the right decision? Did your dog teach you anything about responsibility?

Sooner than later,

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22 Comment

  1. Mia Mercedes is too cute! Lovely post on an important topic. Thank you for doing this one.

  2. Ashley M says:

    I agree, my parents would not allow us to get our “own” pets until we were out of the house for many of the reasons you said. I was 21 when I got my first dog, a boxer named Zoey and with all the moving I did between 18 and 21 I’m really glad they had that rule.

  3. krystal says:

    Your pup is cute! We have two large dogs, and we love it!

  4. cindy b says:

    Super cute post and love seeing the pic. I have a border collie whom I absolutely adore and am so happy to have in my life!

  5. Mindy says:

    I really love this post and your little pup! I have a black lab mutt named Buddha who is a joy in my life. It’s really my boyfriend’s dog, but I love him as if he were mine. It’s so true that people (including myself!) understimate how much work a dog can be. Luckily I have a job that lets me take Buddha to work with me every day. There’s a huuuge wooded backyard that he can run around on, but even so – I worry about his happiness and if he is bored!

    The other thing I’ve just learned… it’s really, really difficult to find a dog-friendly apartment in Los Angeles. Especially for a larger dog like mine. But it’s worth it!

    Thanks for sharing – love your blog!

    1. Felicia says:

      Thanks Mindy! I just checked out your blog as well! There’s a post of yours I might end up adding to my favorites page on feminism! I loved reading your twisted on it!

      But back to dogs.. yes Matt and I had the hardest time finding a nice apartment that allowed a small dog as well. Initially everything we looked at seemed unbearable to live in, but eventually we decided to go to a realtor for some help and he ended up finding us the perfect clean apartment that would allow a dog that we lived in for about a year and a half before we decided to buy a house!

  6. I’ve considered letting my boys have a dog in the hopes that it would teach them responsibility. In a perfect world, I think it can do just that. But, it’s more challenging when someone thinks they have an out.

  7. Heather says:

    We don’t have a dog and my kids are too young to take care of one and I know I’ll be the one that does. I am more of a cat person though. I enjoy that I don’t have to take my cat for walks, but love the cuddles on the couch when I’m reading a book. I think if you are going to get a child a pet, it should be something much easier to take care of, maybe a hamster, a fish, or a cat. But I do have to say, my dog as a child really was my best pal and protected me from harm on many occasions.

    1. Felicia says:

      Heather, you make a great point! If you a parent who wants to teach your child(ren) responsibility, a smaller animal, that it less maintenance, would likely be the better option.

  8. Hezzi-D says:

    Your pup is super cute! I definitely think it helps teach responsibility but the adult needs to be responsible as well.

  9. Aww, what an adorable puppy! I have been giving some thought to adopting a dog. I have such great memories of my childhood dog Cynder, a Rottweiler who would sleep on my pillows every night and I would sleep on her. I would love to have a dog again, but with 5 cats in the house and a fiance who dislikes dogs, I don’t think that is going to happen anytime soon.

    1. Felicia says:

      Oh Holly that must be really tough! I couldn’t imagine having 5 cats and a dog! Since I had Mia before Matt and I started dating, it took him awhile to warm up to her, but now I always find them cuddling on the couch. It’s really cute!

  10. Amanda @ Erickson and Co. says:

    We love our little dog, but I agree, dogs are a big responsibility.

  11. I wish we could get a dog, it would be great for my kids to learn lessons and responsibility but with my daughter’s allergies and asthma we cannot have any pets with fur.

  12. kungphoo says:

    My dog is my best friend.. she waits for me, and follows me.. I have been teaching my kids responsibility with her, like feeding and walks.. it is seems to be working a little.

  13. My son is learning a lot about responsibility with our dogs lately because one has been sick and we’ve had to make sacrifices so she can have her medicine.

  14. Chasity Boatman says:

    I desperately want to get a dog, but I do not have the time to properly train it.

  15. Mia Mercedes is so so so cute!
    And I can see a heart shape on her forehead, that makes her all the more loveable.

  16. Liz Mays says:

    They’re a lot of work. I’ve had them twice but because I travel so much now, it’s not practical anymore. Yours is adorable!

  17. I really want a puppy. Unfortunately, we have two cats. But I still love puppies.

  18. Dogs are such a ton of work- but I honestly can’t imagine life without them! I’m glad your saga ended up all right!

    xx Kait

  19. I have two dogs, one is a puppy, I agree with so many things you’ve said! I wouldn’t change having them for anything in the world!

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