What Is It About Our Pets That We Love So Much?

We all know the phrase describing dogs (or cats!) as man’s (or woman’s!) best friend, and no one who has had a close relationship with their furry family member can dispute that claim. But what exactly is it that connects us so much with the animals that we bring into our homes? Of course they’re soft and furry and cute and give us kisses on command, but what is the deeper connection that leads us to the pure excitement we feel when we come home to them?

For one, I think it’s that they surprise us. They surprise us with their intelligence. The dog I had growing up, Sammi, did not know the most tricks. She could only sit and would only do so for a yummy treat, but she could sense a seizure several minutes before it happened and would protect the person having it until it had passed. An incredibly smart and personal feat for a dog that otherwise didn’t know up from down. They surprise us with their emotionality. They’ll come running across the room to you if you’re crying and lick your tears away. They can sense when we’re down and they make it their sole goal to make us feel better, even when others in our lives don’t make it a priority.

I think there’s also something that draws us to their unconditional love. They accept us on our best days and our worst days. They accept us if we’re dressed to our best or if we’re in our workout sweats (and insist to rub their hair all over us no matter what the outfit). They accept us if we feed them late or if we sleep in on the weekend and walk them off schedule. They accept us if we’re too busy working to give them the love and belly-rubs they deserve. They’re happy to do nothing with us and sleep all day or go on large adventures that we plan and they never ask for more than we have to give. There’s something about the condition-less aspect of their love and the unbridled acceptance that they give us that creates the deep connection that we find ourselves having with them. Of course we love these things because they make us feel good, but there’s also something we see in our pets that I think we strive to find in ourselves.

We don’t have the capacity to give our all to the people around us all the time, it would be impossible! But we can at least keep trying if we have our lovable pups and kitties around to remind us of the potential we have to give our best selves to the world day to day. They imbue us with a little extra love and give us the strength to try and do the same in our own interactions. They make us more open and generous and remind us of the capacity we have to put our best foot forward each day. No wonder we call them our best friends! Not to mention they are so stinking cute when they cuddle up with us for bedtime.

So give your pup or kitty an extra kiss and hug when you get home, as even when you’re not thinking directly about them, they’re giving you all the love they have to give and influencing your interactions with others. That’s why we decide to have them join us for such important moments of our otherwise fleeting lives!

- Maren

Dani's Doggy Deets: Top Dog-Friendly NYC Locations

For the past few years my life has revolved around pups. Being a full time dog-walker and now business owner of a Dog Walking company, I am fully invested in the doggy dog world. I've had the opportunity to learn about the best local spots to bring your pup, best treats & toys for your pup, and facts/tricks to keep your pup happy and healthy. Dani's Doggy Deets is here to provide you some fun filled info. 

Here is a list of my TOP TEN Favorite dog-friendly locations in NYC: 

  1. d.b.a. 41 1st Ave, New York, NY, US, 10003 The gravel garden at the back of the bar is perfect for you and your pooch to chill. They also have Harper's Doggy Donuts available for the pups. 
  2. Fresh Salt 146 Beekman St, New York, NY, US, 10079 Outdoor seating available! I also love their mac & cheese...just saying. 
  3. Nelson Blue 233 Front St, New York, NY, US, 
  4. Sidewalk Cafe 94 Avenue A, New York, NY, US, 10009
  5. Barking Dog 1453 York Ave, New York, NY, US, 10075
  6. The West 79th Boat Basin 79th St and Riverside, New York, NY, US, 10024 The sunset view is pretty amazing. 
  7. Redemption Bar & Grill 1003 2nd Ave, New York, NY, US, 10022-4864 Looking for a place to watch sports with your best bud? Swing by here and grab a beer . 
  8. Miss Lilly's 109 Ave A, New York, NY, US, Rum punch anyone? Jerk chicken? 
  9. Enid's 560 Manhattan Ave, Brooklyn, NY, US, 11222 This is down the street from my apt so I am biased BUT it's right next to McCarren Park which has a huge dog park. 
  10. LIC Bar 45-58 Vernon Blvd, Long Island City, NY, US, 11101