Humans have a wonderful list of rules to live by. You call it the 10 commandments, and it includes simple life lessons like “Don’t steal” and “Don’t lie.” They’re just a few basic principles designed to help people live better lives.
And it made me think there should be a list of 10 commandments for dogs. Ten rules that all dogs should follow to ensure a happy, treat-filled life. Just to be clear, these didn’t come from a higher power… they’re just my observations from a fruitful life as a puppy, family member and CEO.
1. Love your owner above all else.
The best thing we dogs can do for our owners is to show them how much we love them. And it’s probably the easiest command to follow because that comes naturally to us! Sometimes that love runs so deep that we can’t live without our Moms and Dads once they’re gone. Remember the story of Hachiko. And for you humans, remember this command when we do something you don’t like… we may have chewed up your slippers or peed in the wrong place… but we love you. Above all else.
2. Always encourage belly rubs.
Belly rubs might be the most mutually beneficial thing in the world. Long experience has taught me that almost nothing delights our humans more than when we lie on our bellies, paws up, and beg for a good rub. It never fails to make everyone happy.
3. Learn at least one trick.
Seriously, this will make your human so happy. It gives them this incredible sense of accomplishment and pride, and every time you raise your paw for a handshake or roll over and play dead, you not only bring a smile to their face but you dramatically increase your odds of getting a reward. That goes double if you perform your trick in front of guests.