Saturday, April 12, 2014
Tika & It's A Dog's Life
Did our ancestors keep dogs for pets or for food? For companionship or to help haul burdens?
The Non-Sequitur cartoon in our paper today showed a fellow sitting on a bar stool with a sign on his back: "Treat me like a dog." The bartender tells somebody looking at the sign: "He's hoping someone will take him home, feed him, and let him sleep all day." That's a dog's life for sure!
But has it always been so? Since the 1660s a proverb has explained a dog's life: "It's a dog's life, hunger and ease." In common usage today, a dog's life usually means that life is hard and unpleasant.
But if my Tika is any example, a dog's life is pretty cushy. She's kept safe (baby gates on the deck), fed only good-quality kibbles, walked only on a leash and tucked in warmly at night (into our bed). Some dog's life.
My grandfather, George Louis Gurney (1895-1964) had a little black Cocker Spaniel appropriately called "Blackie," whom he doted upon. My Dad and his father had "Turk" a rangy looking hunting dog and I have several B&W pictures of father, son, rifles and dog.
My opinion: I think besides being food, carriers-of-burdens and hunters, I think dogs have been companions of mankind since very early times. Does this rock art prove that???