If You’re Having a “Ruff” Day, Play with a Dog!

by Jennifer Dodwell, FFC board member

As we head into summer, with its gorgeous weather and many opportunities to play, I’d like to share a playful message of my own: if you’re having a ruff day (or just want an extra happy day), play with a dog!

Go find a nice green patch of grass with a dog, then throw the first stick you can find, as far as you can. Watch the dog fly across the grass after that stick, with unbridled ear-flopping joy, then prance back to you like a giddy horse with his or her conquest, eyes glowing, and tail wagging. Just try telling yourself not to smile or laugh, then see how impossible that is. Extra smiles and laughs guaranteed if the stick is larger than the dog but the dog has no idea.

Or spend a few quiet moments cuddling with a dog. Enjoy the feeling of the dog leaning against you, keeping you warm like a furry blanket, looking up at you lovingly — or maybe even resting his or her head in your lap and falling asleep — while you give this new best friend a scratch behind the ears or a belly rub. Experience the pure joy that comes when this kind of creature gives you his or her undivided attention and communicates to you that you are a wonderful, miraculous human.

Spending moments like these with a dog, whether your own or someone else’s, is sure to make you a happier human. And you will also have at least one very happy dog.