When I saw my daughter on all fours lapping up water out of the dog’s bowl, I learned she was more akin to her furry friend Scout than I had previously thought. In fact, since becoming a parent three-and-a-half years ago, I’m finding that my kids and my dog could be blood relatives. Yes, that’s right; I said my kids and my dog are almost siblings. Before you judge, ask yourself this question: Has your daughter ever pooped in your shoe? Well, mine has, so I count myself qualified to make the above comparison.
Further demonstrating her relation to the canine family, my daughter has a strange draw to the actual toilet bowl. I’ve never seen her drink out of the commode (yet), but the pride I felt for her going pee-pee in the potty quickly turned to disgust when I saw her scrubbing her hands with liquid soap in the toilet. Surely I didn’t teach her that habit!
I have also found out that my son is part monkey. Aside from his affection for bananas, this child’s “terrible twos” included creating Picasso-like arrangements with his feces during nap time. Never have I feared laying him down to sleep as much as I did during his feces throwing phase!
My children don’t just take after animals with their bathroom cycles (although potty-training and house-breaking a dog is one in the same); the comparison runs even deeper. If I don’t know what day of the week it is, I can always figure out when Monday comes around by the frantic sound of feet/paws hitting the floor and bodies slamming into the faux-wood blinds at a chance to see the garbage man. The primal sounds of barking and shouting at this poor man doing his job bounce off the walls in my home. Similarly, the garage door signals a Pavlov-like reaction in the kids and Scout as all run to the door in anticipation of Daddy’s arrival.
They all like to show their affection by licking, as our new baby can to attest to that fact (yes, my children LICK their sister’s face), and if they’ve done something wrong, I know to check their favorite hiding places under the bed and dining room table. They eat food off of the floor (people food and dog food), and they like to destroy books by ripping out all of the pages. They will run full speed and jump on a person if they’re excited, and they all like to try to attack the vacuum cleaner while screaming with delight or barking in fury. With so much in common, I’m surprised my dog doesn’t like the kids more!
Growing up, I heard the wise advice many times that one should get a dog before having a child. Until now, I didn’t realize what a sage piece of advice that is. However, having a kid is much better–their breath doesn’t stink nearly as bad, and when they learn to speak, it’s cute and not weird. And when it comes to the place in my heart that my kids hold versus my dog, well…there’s no comparison.