The Dog Kid Comparison

There are a lot of things that irritate me. Stuffed animals lined up in your back car window. People who are rude. Gobs of peanut butter left on a knife in the sink…Calgary weather…I could list them all day. But for the most part these things are insignificant (yes even Calgary weather because what can you do?!) and I move on, but there is one thing that constantly irks me: The dog/kid comparison.

Side note: while we were waiting to be placed with Jonathan, I even had a car/kid comparison. Yep. A kid is the same as buying a car don’t you know? A coworker who bought a mini cooper was showing it off in the parking lot one day. I asked some question that included the word ‘buying’ in it and she replied ‘oh no Lindsay, you don’t buy a Mini Cooper, you adopt it’. Really? REALLY?!

I am first to admit that I was a bit slightly very sensitive at the time (ahem, still am) around the use of the A word. And, I know there are lots of references to adoption – it does not exclusively mean to give your sleep, sanity and every waking moment to a strange child with absurd behaviours and a horrendous past. I get it. But come on! Did she not for one minute remember the countless conversations we’ve had about the fact that I’m adopting a child? A human being? And you think that having your silly little car can be compared to me raising a child? My face got all hot and red and I had no response to her insensitive comment.

Also, I’m not actually all that confronting (most times) in real life so I kept my mouth shut. (If any of you have adopted a mini cooper and a child I’d like to know if they really are the same thing. Please, enlighten me).

Ok, the real point of this post – the dog/kid comparison. It’s no secret I’m a tad obsessed with my cats. To all you dog people, I get it but in reverse, with cats. But in no way are my cats comparable to my kids. Okay, maybe in the way they are stinkin’ cute and I take too many photos of them but the similarities end there! The “raising a dog is just like having a kid” and “we’re thinking of having kids, so we got a dog first” statements have always drove me bananas, even before we started the adoption process. So you can imagine how worked up sensitive I became once we started the process (refer to story one above).

Keep this in mind as I rant, again, in a few moments.

A little while ago I came across this on Facebook (I believed it was shared through the Canadian Human Society Page…If I remember correctly):

adoption dog

Oh, sigh. Here we go.

If you have spent hours being hit and bit and kicked because you asked your dog to wash his hands, then yes, maybe your dog is just like an adopted child.

If you have spent  countless hours reading reports, talking, discussing and wondering about all the history and neglect and other terrible things that happened that are not in the report and how the heck to manage it all, then yep, your dog is just like my kid.

If you always worry that you’re going to run into your dogs first parents when you are out at the store or have dreams about him being kidnapped by them, well hey now your dog IS just like my adopted kid.

You  must also spend hours emailing, talking to, visiting and humming and hawing over what school is best for him given all of his needs along with if you should change-up your behaviour approaches because the last few days have been terrible and hard and all-consuming when all you’re trying to do is teach and love and give stability and normalcy. Huh, I suppose then yes. Bang on, exactly the same.

I think I have some pent-up feeling currently, I’ll find a way to let them go by next post:)


12 thoughts on “The Dog Kid Comparison

  1. Well, I have (biologically) one child already and I´m waiting to have (adoption) a second child. Once, a person actually asked me: “Oh, adoption is so hard! Why you just don´t buy a dog instead? It´s almost the same!” I totally understand you and don´t like the comparasion either!

  2. I hear you – the truth is, there is no comparison – dogs and cats and great – I have a cat and would one day love a dog – and yes I have a mini – I love my car – it looks cute and it gets me from a to b – but non of these things are adoption – or come even remotely close to it – or close to the love I have for PJ. There is no comparison. One of my pet peeves too – hahaha x Pets are pest and cars are cars. You buy them both. You do not adopt them. sorry. well said.

  3. I hear you!
    I did have a Mini, I loved her, cherished her, named her, but I did not adopt her. I was her caretaker. She was more than just a car, but no comparison to a child.
    I have once had an angry outburst at a dining table where a family member was complaining about how hard it was looking after her puppy, and how she now knew how I felt about sleepless nights and potty training. I declared that it was NOTHING alike and that I was fed up with people comparing my children to dogs! Funnily enough the dog has now gone, and she has a baby instead…she couldn’t cope with both.
    We also have friends who used to compare having their dog with having a child…not so much related to adopting them, but just generally comparing their care. It used to kill me not to say anything. Now they have their own child, they don’t compare the two anymore…funny that!

    I hate the use of the word adoption on those animal rescue adverts, and at the zoo. I prefer the word ‘sponsor’ which in my mind separates the two. And Mini has asked me why we can’t adopt a gorilla and take one home, like we did with him….so much simpler if they used different wording.

    Thanks for linking this up to the Weekly Adoption Shout Out x

    P.S Have just realised the irony of my son being called Mini on my blog!

    • I am waiting for the day that I have my own outburst…it’s inevitable! It is interesting that most people who insist on calling their dogs their children, don’t have children and quickly change their mind when a child comes along. Thanks for reading:)
      Ps I love the nickname Mini

    • Thanks! Technically I adopted our cats from our Humane Society, but I paid for them, I love them to bits but they were a transaction. My kid was not a transaction! Maybe a different word would be better…language is so confusing!

  4. Well said. I love my Dog and Cats but I hate how the word ‘adoption’ is used so fast and loose. Buzzbee takes things very literally and I have lost count of how many technicolor tantrums he has had when he hasn’t been allowed to ‘adopt’ a penguin, bunny, tiger, otter (the list is endless).

    • Jonathan is also very literal, but he’s just learning to talk so I suppose that’s normal, but it’s very funny when he is confused because of word meaning and I don’t blame him! I bet in another year the adopting and animal thing will confuse the heck out of him too! Thanks for reading:)

  5. I hear you too. We love our animals, three cats, two guinea pigs and two zebra finches, but never would I compare them to my children or caring for my children. Adoption to me means giving yourself completely to the life of another, supporting and loving them through some of the toughest times imaginable. It is callous and insensitive to band the word adoption about when talking about cars or caring for animals.

    Thanks for linking up to The Weekly Adoption Shout Out. xx

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