Tonight I went to the gym and ran and crunched and pumped and chinned and ran some more.
I am trying to drink more water both outside of, and during my workouts because my lips currently feel as though they have taken up house somewhere smack dab in the middle of the Sahara.
If I really tried (and well, lost all sense of social decorum – or more importantly, of right and wrong) I could probably give myself a pedicure using only my mouth.
Anywho, it was during one of my many trips to the bathroom to drink water from the sink (I keep forgetting water bottles and as I was saying before, my gym leaves something to be desired both aesthetics and amenities-wise. ie) no available water fountain. Seriously, it’s amazing there is even a functional plumbing system in the change rooms and that we’re not forced to drink the rusty water droplets as they leak from the overhead pipes) that I noticed that outside, tied up on the deck was one of the cutest, most forlorn doggies I have ever espied.
I walked over to the window and there he was, lying on the cold hard concrete. I crouched down to get a better look at the fella (I don’t actually know for sure if the dog was of the XY persuasion – I am one of those strange individuals who assumes that all dogs are male and all cats are female, while holding absolutely zero preconceptions about the sexes of all other animals) and as I folded myself into a squat, he looked at me and actually sighed.
Like an old man, leaning back in his rocker, eyeing his pipe that has recently gone cold, pondering whether or not he should refill the bowl with his favourite tobacco, or whether or not there is ample lighter fluid in his zippo, or perhaps how he got that small hole in the top corner of his right slipper – THE DOG SIGHED.
I sighed back.
He then looked at me – a stare that was both long and hard, almost pleading – before yawning a big, darn-right terrific yawn (a yawn like how the lions yawn in national geographic photos or PBS documentaries) before turning away and resting his chin on his front paws.
The word yawn has lost all meaning to me now.
But I digress.
The lonely and abject dejection in his eyes, combined with the fact that he actually just exhaled as if to say – PEOPLE AM I RITE? – pretty much broke my heart in half.
Plus, anyone who is operating on the West Coast of Canada (WCOC or Wuhcock if you will) these days knows that the temperatures have been anything BUT temperate.
It’s colder than Frosty’s carrot stick out there.
Who could do that to their pet? Tie them up outside, alone in the freezing night air.
Cripes, can you imagine what the whole scenario must look like from the eyes of this canine? You head inside and proceed to run on a machine that goes nowhere. Then you repeatedly lift what can only be rubber, over-sized chew toys. Then you frig around on your back for a bit, contorting yourself into the positions that the cat tends to sleep in- but only when she’s really, really exhausted.
That dog probably wasn’t just tired and sad.
He was probably thinking to himself: “Shit. What an asshole.”
And let me tell you, he wasn’t the only one.
People who don’t exercise with their pets when it’s a viable option – I’m not purporting that people should run marathons with their super old doggies or Chihuahuas, but within the acceptable limits – don’t deserve to have the pet in the first place.
Take responsibility and do the right thing. Spend that time with your dog – they are not the only one who will benefit from the activity!
For example, tonight, in spite the cold, it was actually a super lovely evening. The jerk owner could have gone for a nice long walk with Mr. Pooch, enjoyed the crisp, invigorating air, got some quality bonding time in, and if they still felt the need to feel the burn, could have gone to the gym after having dropped their dog off back home.
It’s the humane thing to do.
So all you pet owners out there, I have one piece of advice:
HEY – BE A MAN. DO THE RIGHT THING!