Queer Shift

Queer Shift — Pup Shift

Nope, this is not an article about Kink and Puppy Play, sorry folks. I have resources though should that be what you are looking for. I love dogs! I know there are cat people and dog people, but since this edition of the Q is dedicated to dogs, I am declaring my complete orientation to the canine family.

Finding your life partner is tremendous, the world becomes a much more amazing place, an improved place. Even better when the perfect mate has a soft beard, a wet nose and four legs. A dog doesn’t cringe at the word commitment, in fact a dog defines the things we all want in a man — loyalty, companionship, snuggling, being there, the perfect listener, unconditional love and life-long friendship.

A dog lives for you. Day and night he’s always ready for whatever you have in mind, work or play. He can be trained to live by your rules, he can be fun and ever so easy to have around, and he always responds to the come command. A dog doesn’t require elegant gifts or extravagant meals and you can never forget his birthday because he doesn’t even know he has one. Although I highly recommend making his birthday extra special for your pooch. He has keen intuition.

Rescuing a dog is a heroic feat, and one to be carefully thought through. You are choosing to care for a dog in a long, long-term relationship.

While I was performing in the last Sister Dottie play at SLAC almost three years ago, our much beloved Deacon, a Westhighland Terrier finally had to leave us, after 14 years. I was in mid-rehearsal when the vet called and said “you were right, it is the end, come now.” I recall that night with tremendous anguish and every time someone posts their pet moving on — my heart drops. Every single time. Once the play was over I literally went into grieving for several months. A stately large framed portraiture of Deacon hangs on our wall and it always comforts me that we shared his whole life together. Upward and onward.

My husband Doug and I are about to become doggy daddies again — yep, after three years of recovery. We’ve found a Norwich Terrier named Cash whom we will officially adopt early August. It’s finally time.

Choosing the right dog for you is a crucial decision, one that merits time, planning and preparation. Choosing a dog to share your time with is one of life’s greatest privileges. Identifying yourself with the right dog adds to your own profile. You’re no longer just a gay recovering Mormon, Scandinavian, ginger power bottom, Bear pharmacist; now you are a gay recovering Mormon, Scandinavian, ginger power bottom, Bear pharmacist who owns two toy poodles. Finding the right dog for you, one who will fit into your lifestyle is part of a noble mission.

Does every gay man need a dog? Hell no. Some gay men simply cannot handle the responsibility of owning a dog. Some cannot commit to a color much less a living creature. Many gay men cannot keep a house plant alive, but they are often fantasizing about the perfect Pomeranian being toted about in that fabulous Louis Vuitton dog carrier. Luckily for the poor matted Pom, certain gay people have spared the canine race the abuse and disappointment and have resigned themselves to a dogless existence. Better to own a cat(s), with unlimited lesbian friends.

Here are a few life-altering doggy lessons to strongly think about:

  • How it feels to be the center of another’s world.
  • How it feels to have someone depend on you for everything.
  • What unconditional love is.
  • Why consistency pays off.
  • That commitment doesn’t hurt.
  • Why the promise “to obey” can be a good thing.
  • How it feels to wake up to a hairy beast who will never leave you for a younger man.
  • What it’s like to have a friend who never judges you.
  • That dogs hang around much longer than most lovers.
  • The utter joy of a good bone.

And a few more wrap-it-up facts:

  • Dogs are far more tolerant of your shortcomings and your insecurities.
  • Dogs actually listen to you when you speak.
  • Dogs are all about PDA.
  • Dogs don’t insist on exclusivity; threesomes in the park would be every dog’s idea of a perfect outing.
  • Dogs are easy to get along with and don’t bitch.
  • Dogs don’t question when you bring home the sales boy from Nordstrom or Coffee Garden.
  • Dogs freely admit that they are nosy and love gossip, and rarely repeat it.
  • Dogs don’t complain when you opt for dinner at home, even if it’s leftovers.
  • Dogs don’t insist on an explanation when you come home late or stay out all night.
  • Dogs don’t compare you with their previous bedmates.
  • Dogs actually enjoy being used.
  • And in closing — like Paul Simon said, your dog’s still “gonna love you when your looks are gone.”

Get a dog, it’ll make your life swell in so many wonderfully memorable ways.





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  1. Congratulations on your soon to be completed adoption of Cash!!! One point that you overlooked, as a single dog parent…when you are dating and your dog dislikes someone you've brought home, PAY ATTENTION, and of course how that person behaves with your dog! HUGE RED FLAGS!!! Whether you are gay or straight…a dog knows best!!!

  2. Whoop whoop … congratulations on Cash!! And, having known and loved Deacon I know he is wagging his approval as well. Made me cry and laugh as only you can CLF! xoxo

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