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The Growing Place of Dogs in Our Lives

By David13676 @dogspired

I live in Seattle, where there are twice as many dogs as kids. I don’t have kids, and I do have a well-lovedThe Growing Place of Dogs in Our Lives dog, so this is good to hear–I’m not alone. As I look around, it makes sense that dogs are more popular than ever. Dog owners are devoted to their pets. Dogs demand love—they won’t let us ignore them.

Because we love them so much, dogs are good for business. While our economy has sagged, we are spending as much or more on our dogs. They have become a $50 billion business and an entrepreneur’s best friend. Popular products and services are promoted and sold featuring dogs, some appearing in TV ads and some between the covers of dog magazines.

The pet market is consistently ranked in the top ten for business opportunities, and as more and more dog owners become “dog people,” things will only get better business-wise. According to the American Pet Products Association, dogs are found in 46.3 million homes across America. (By contrast, cats are in 38 million, freshwater fish in 11 million, birds in 5 million and saltwater fish are last, in just 700,000 homes.)

Our reference to our dogs and those who have them has changed. Dogs are our family members, our companions, our children, our fur-babies (fur-kids), soul mates, best friends. Rather than owner, we are our dog’s humanpersoncompanionguardianparentbest friend. All of these terms are more politically correct these days. No more “in the yard where you belong.” Rather, those with dogs are saying, “On your sofa where you belong.”

Dogs are increasingly invited into our social lives. We take them to parks where they can romp unleashed with us and other doggy pals. Dogs are allowed at some restaurants, some cafes are dedicated to them, and more companies are letting their employees bring their dogs to work.

You don’t find nearly as many people shelling out large amounts of money to buy dogs from breeders. Instead, we are rescuing dogs from shelters and from the streets. This doesn’t save money; it saves us from looking the other way as homeless dogs go unnoticed.

As a new pet craze is sweeping the nation, there is an endless amount of information about dogs on the Internet. Dogs have their own websites and Facebook pages, and owners are tweeting on behalf of their dogs. Rarely does a dog topic come up that dog lovers don’t respond to with similar stories and concerns.

With our society’s growing interest in dogs, there is more room for them in our lives. Dogs inspire us to be better to ourselves because we are better to them. Sometimes I think my own rescue dog, Tasha, understands this better than I do.

This story was shared from Tasha and Others.

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