Going to the dogs

January 12, 2023   ·   0 Comments

By Anthony Carnovale

I’m just going to come out and say it. I know I shouldn’t, but this has been coming for a long time now. I know some of you are going to be offended, but you’re just going to have to take it on the chin (metaphorically speaking). You ready? Okay. Give me on sec: ‘This is my in-breath; this is my out-breath’. There— I’m centred. I’m ready: I. HATE. SMALL. DOGS.

Now, I know ‘hate’ is a strong word, but it’s the only word that truly encapsulates how I feel about small dogs. I tried ‘enmity’ (too difficult to pronounce); ‘rancour’ (close); loathe (closer). I even tried a more diplomatic approach. I tried do away with the word ‘hate’ by comparing my feelings towards little dogs to something else:

I don’t like small dogs as much as some of you don’t like Justin Trudeau.

I don’t like small dogs as much as Doug Ford doesn’t like greenspace.

I think I’ll go with ‘hate’.

Let’s be clear: I am a dog lover. I’ve had the pleasure of owning three dogs (and a few cats). I love medium sized dogs; I even like some big dogs (the ones that won’t bite my face off). I am an animal lover. What I am not is a small dog lover.

When I say ‘small’, I’m thinking of a dog that weighs less than a ten-dollar bag of apples; a dog that’s smaller than my daughter’s backpack (but weighs less). A dog that’s the size of a purse or carry-on luggage; small like everything that used to be big. Small breeds include: Chihuahua (say wha?); Bichon Friese (cold shoulder); Beagles (only with cream cheese, please!); Miniature Pinscher (ouch); Terriers (terrible); Corgi (squash?); Pugs (Nice face. Did you run into a wall?) Russel Terrier (holy terrors!) Shih Tzu (the name speaks for itself). In my mind, if your dog is the size of a cat, you should have just bought a cat.

I might come across as being a little heated, over the top, but I’ve really thought this thing through; I’m coming at this from experience.

My neighbour has a small dog, in fact they have two. The second they’re let outside to take care of their small-dog business the barking, yelping, and screeching begins. They prance around their pen like their anxious and nervous, like their hopped up on caffeine or amphetamines. They bark when I write, when I read. It’s like I’m being poked in the eye with a butter knife. For the record, I like our neighbours; I don’t like their dogs (how else am I supposed to feel?)

On morning walks with my dog, Cosmo, we frequently cross paths with what can only be described as a battalion of gremlins. Three little pugs huff and puff and scowl, and look and sound, as if they want to scratch my eyes out, and eat Cosmo for breakfast. They yip, bawl, scowl and rage, eyes bulging out of their heads (for reference see Gollum from ‘Lord of the Rings’). The owners talk to them like a parent talking to a child in that voice that annoying parents use: “Stop! Stop it! Bad boys!” They don’t stop. Even after we’ve turned the corner, the little ogres are hankering for blood.

That’s not all:

There’s a beagle that just about loses its mind when it sees us walking past. This dog is next level kooky. When it’s on a leash, the dog stands on its hind legs and stretches out its front legs like it wants to rip my face off. His growl is grisly. Reigning him in is like trying to reign in a wild horse.

I’ve had to change my walking route to avoid crossing paths with these mutants. How can these people be happy with their dogs? What compels a person to purchase a small dog?

My family and I spent a year preparing for our dog Cosmo. We took notes, did plenty of reading, spoke to other dog owners. We knew that Portuguese Water Dogs needed plenty of exercise and mental stimulation. We liked that they were friendly and social. We felt that the breed was a good fit for our family. Cosmo is gentle, loving, and friendly towards other dogs. People love seeing Cosmo — small dogs do not. How much of the behaviours of small dogs comes back to how the dog is raised? I’m not prepared to go there- yet (Cesar Millan has).

I am not trying to pontificate here. It’s a humbling experience owning a dog. I go wherever Cosmo goes; twice a day I walk behind my dog while carrying a bag of his feces.

Thankfully, I have a solution. Recently, the City of New York created the position of Rat Czar to help strategize, manage, and lead teams against rat infestation. Orangeville needs a Small Dog Czar to help strategize, manage, and lead teams against the scourge of small dogs in our community.

Readers Comments (0)

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.