Coffee. I needed coffee. And sleep. And food.
The week after I picked up my Lab puppy, Thurber, in February 2020, I spent every waking moment happily tending to the little guy’s considerable needs.
Before I got him, I was cocksure I’d mastered the proper training techniques to bend my little guy’s will to mine.
“No dog of mine is going number one in my house,” I boasted to anyone who would listen.
“No dog of mine is going to lack discipline,” I protested.
“No dog of mine will sit on my furniture!” I said, arrogantly.
How did things work out?
I have my carpet cleaner on speed dial. Discipline is overrated, as it intrudes on fun. And right now my bundle of joy is sitting on my beloved leather recliner, staring at me with black, doughy eyes that make me feel like a pat of butter in a frying skillet.
It’s obvious the training strategy didn’t go so well at first – though he has been teaching me as fast as he can.
His endless cuteness, hilarity and affection melted my heart and made me laugh out loud all day long.
He never stopped reminding me that the world is a place of wonder – that there’s lots to experience if you keep your eyes as wide open as his.
When he experienced snow for the first time, he couldn’t dance in enough of it.
He stll plays with a chunk of frozen dirt with more intensity that he does a store-bought toy.
I fell hard and fast for my little guy. He’s changed me in ways I didn’t anticipate.
I’m so focused on his health and happiness, I’ve barely thought about my own.
I’ve spent so little time on the internet and social media, I barely know what’s going on in the world.
Being offline has actually improved my life. I’ve wasted no time reading friends’ posts about politics and what’s wrong with the world.
And because I’ve stopped watching cable news, I’ve been spared the divisive spin and opinions that never stop – until you turn it off.
For the sake of America, I wish everyone would invite a puppy into their family. Reason magazine can help explain why.
According to Reason, politics is seeping into every aspect of our daily life and ruining everything.
“Americans are choosing jobs, brands and friends for partisan reasons,” the libertarian magazine reports.
This is because Americans are becoming way too serious about things that shouldn’t matter as much as they do – and not serious enough about the things that make us happier, more civil humans.
An open heart and open eyes are what we need.
Laughter and affection, not stridency and anger, are what will bring us together and help us realize we have more in common than we think.
Just become the parent of an 8-week-old puppy – let your life be disrupted by his wonderful view of the world – and you’ll laugh out loud several times a day.
I’ve been laughing that way almost two years now!
Bringing Thurber home was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made!
Visit www.ThurbersTail.com for regular column updates, funny dog videos, well-researched articles explaining why our dogs do what they do, and Tom’s new book, “Tips from a New Dog Dad.” The Thurber’s Tail blog is managed by nationally syndicated humor columnist Tom Purcell and his beloved Labrador puppy, Thurber!