People who have never been dog owners aren’t always sure why dogs should be considered man’s best friend. However, they only need to see dog owners in action to get a bit of insight into why these particular animals are so important to the individuals, couples and families that make room for them at home.
Humans are absolute mad for dogs. Sometimes people take things too far and treat their dogs as children, which is generally bad for their health, but on the whole, British dog owners are pretty savvy about how their animals should be treated. They express the love they have for their animals with photographs, portraits, attention and the odd treat without overstepping the mark.
So what is it that dogs actually do for their owners, in return for being fed, cared for and entertained?
It sounds cheesy but dogs do tend to offer that unconditional love that people can’t really even expect from each other! They don’t have the capacity to be judgmental and they are simply delighted to see their owners at any time of the day or night. This unconditional love really helps to raise your spirits and get you in a more positive frame of mind.
Dogs are fantastic at keeping their owners fit. The bigger the dog, the more exercise they need so long walks are a must. Owners who do their own dog walking are in the perfect position to stay fit and healthy because they have an excuse, a responsibility even, to take them out as regularly as possible and go on those big walks that are so good at keeping the weight off and keeping the body conditioned.
It’s definitely not just owners that entertain their dogs. It works the other way around as well. Family dogs are especially good at providing entertainment and it’s great to raise children around a friendly pooch so they get used to being around animals. This is good for their confidence. However, it also gives them hours of fun playing and the same can be said for parents and adults without children.
Dogs do help people to feel a bit more secure. It’s not necessary to have a bona fide guard dog in order to feel safer just because of the presence of an animal. Dogs tend to rise to the occasion in this department because they are very loyal and protective – they are pack animals and they don’t like it when the pack is threatened by an intruder.
This is different from unconditional love. It’s great that dogs provide that loyalty and devotion that we think of as unconditional love, but it’s often enough that they are simply there all the time. Just being there is an oft underrated aspect of canine behaviour. No matter what is going on in your life, you can always depend on your dog to provide a bit of comfort by their presence and attention. Even those with large families and plenty of friends appreciate what their dog offers them in this capacity.
Helena King loves her dogs for their companionship and endless capacity for entertainment. That’s why she had them immortalised by Sarahs Pet Portraits.