Nose to Nose

Nose to nose. Eye to eye. Ears up and listening. Noses twitching to inhale a special doggy fragrance. Tails stiff and up, waiting for the identifying stiff of the anal glands. Here at the rear, scientists have agreed that there is a plethora of tales to learn at the tail end. The information learned from reading the back of the book tells; what I eat, how my health is, how I’m feeling at this moment, what street I live on and the last time I had a bath. The body also remains rigid, on alert, ready to run, attack, or get into the play bow position, depending on the conclusion of our meeting. All of this is the welcome of the canine greeting. The canine handshake so to speak. All of this just to say, “hello, are you my friend, or are you my foe?” So, much information, quickly shared, to know if we should play or should we fight.

Image as humans, we behave the same way each time we waltzed up to a potential friend. Standing tall, shoulders back, face to face, sniffing, listening, walking slowly around each other to observe how you handle yourself, what your smells will tell me about you. If your smell is good, you hold yourself well, relax, do a little step back, bow letting the other person know that being friends would really be fun for us. Pretty simple.
Once it has been determined that danger is not possible, we anticipate a happy new friendship, we enthusiastically run around, maybe nuzzle each other, wag the tip of our tail, hop back with a little bounce, and smell some stuff. Now we are friends. How simple that would be. We don’t have to share our family history, job status, education, likes, dislikes, and it doesn’t matter your size, color or religious affiliation. There is something in your smell, your posture that communicates to me if you are fun and happy, or sad and misguided. All fear is alleviated quickly with a sniff.

Our animal friends live in a harmonious, joyful world. One that generates affection for the great fortune to share happiness with all creatures. They provide examples for us to fashion our lives. We probably don’t need to sniff each other or bow if we want to play, but maybe a little kindness, a little acceptance and respect for the relationships that nourish our lives. Just think of all the fun that could be had if we had the ability to quickly make a friend. It is never a dog’s intention to hurt another. If by some slim chance an altercation arises, it is a result of fear or survival, not of prejudice and hatred. What a simple lesson to learn. A dog promises to love and loves to have love returned. That is what we all want as far as I can tell.
Love and be loved. Simple. Practice it.

Posted by
Cheryl Wilson

Cheryl Wilson created Why We Wag in 2012 as her result of her lifelong love of dogs. After 22 years in the Educational sector, Cheryl utilizes her expertise as an award winning educator, to educate dog lovers, along with offering supplies that support a healthy, meaningful relationship with canines. Residing in Utah, Cheryl is celebrating her 5th generation with dogs and now her first generation of grand-dogs.