Noise? What noise? Oh right, there’s a noise. BARK! Head up. My work here is done, time for a nap!
It is no shock to anyone that knows me that I own a dog. He is an American Bulldog and he sheds. A lot. His fur is short and white with a smattering of dark brindle spots covering his entire body, he also has a spot on his tongue. He’s very big and got a lot of meat, mainly in his head. His name is Harley. He also answers to Harley-Quinn when he’s being a) incredibly cute or b) incredibly naughty. He is very affectionate and will sometimes just plonk! himself down on me.
He has three (yes, three!) beds in our house, all in different rooms. But he likes ours the best. Imagine a custard slice, pastry on either side and a huge sliver of calorific custard in the middle. Well, me and my husband are the pasty and Harley is the custard, taking up all the room! (huh, I’ve never made a connection between bed and cake before but I like it!) My husband is the cook in our house, and where there’s a cook, there’s food and where there’s food you’re sure to find a drooling bulldog. And this isn’t contained in the kitchen! He follows and sits looking all starved and sad whilst we’re eating. It’s emotional blackmail!
American Bulldogs have a bad reputation which is mostly undeserved. I stand firmly by the “blame the owner, not the breed” notion- it is how a dog is raised which determines his character and behaviour. Harley is the gentlest dog, his face has been within an inch of a budgie, a baby and a sausage dog and I have no worries. When we’ve been out on walks, I’ve had mixed reactions from people. Most of them are looks of horror as they grab their child/chihuahua and run past us, hoping he doesn’t eat them. When off the lead, he’ll try and play, bounding (like a lamb, he wasn’t built for grace or speed!) over to say hello and they scream and demand to know why this vicious beast isn’t muzzled and on a lead. This upsets me when this happens, he’s completely prejudged and misunderstood. Yes, he’s big and his face is going to cause some questions- so ask them! I’m more than happy for him to sit so you can meet him. Yes, he can be stubborn and greedy, but he’s so soft. And doesn’t deserve the negative reaction he so often receives.
I have babied my dog, it’s no secret. But with no children and my acute broodiness and with him being raised from a puppy it was inevitable. He is a huge part of my life, and I’m not just talking about his size! Harley has only been with us for a little over 2 years, but I can’t imagine life without him. He offers unconditional love and endless sloppy cuddles and he always knows when I’m not feeling well.
I don’t know what I’d do without him!