It all started when she was a puppy. Mollie was your typical happy-go-lucky Labrador pup, full of naps and hunger and poop. And then she started teething, and it was like living with a piranha. My hands were scratched up and chewed for months. She was mean. Luckily, her meanness eventually subsided, and she became a good dog. But now she’s old and she has reverted to just not giving a big fat fuck.
She’ll stare you down with such intensity that you have no other choice but to let her lick your dinner plate. She’ll leap out of bed when you try to cuddle her too closely. She’ll look back at you intently when you call her to come, as if to say, “I understand you, but I just don’t care,” and then turn the other way. She’ll cry at night and hide her head under the bed skirt until you turn off all of the lights; she likes it dark, of course. She’ll only respond to the command “down”when you have a piece of food in your hand. She’ll groan and toss a leg over her eye when you try to wake her up in the morning. She’ll lie outside of the bedroom as you have intimate time with your husband and glare at you with contempt when you open the door. She’ll swim circles around a tennis ball fetched into the water to signify she’s done with the game and then never bring it to shore (the Atlantic Ocean is now home to 90% of Mollie’s tennis balls). She’ll play with a new toy for 5 minutes before sighing heavily and leaving it alone. She’ll walk away 3 feet when you tell her to “go away” while begging, turn, and walk back 4 feet closer. She’ll cry for hours until you play with her, and then walk away from you after 3 minutes of interaction.
I love all of these things about Mollie. Her pizzazz amuses me, makes me laugh. She gives me inspiration, this old lady I live with. You see, I am not innately a bitch; sometimes, yes, I take cues on how to be mean from my dog.
What I don’t love, though, are her breedist tendencies.
Yes, you heard me right. Breedist. A breedist is one who harbors prejudices concerning the breed of animals. Mollie is a breedist.
Mollie’s breedism is geared toward poodles and black dogs. I kid you not. I have no idea where this rooted from. She was kicked out of doggie daycare because she picked a fight with a sweet, docile poodle at random. She’s only ever snapped at dogs with black coats. Don’t even get me started on what happens when we come across a black poodle.
Her breedism has created quite the dilemma. I am not racist; I am the adult product of a child that was raised in a very open-minded family in a very tolerant community. Judging others by the tone of their skin or the basis of their beliefs is not my thing. I wish I could say the same for Mollie, though. To say the least, having a four-legged child with breedist habits is not something I ever prepared for.
How are you supposed to explain to the owner of a black pit bull that you crossed the street because of the color of the dog’s fur opposed to its breed orientation? And would that sound any better?
“No man, I don’t have anything against pit bulls. I think they’re great. My dog just doesn’t like black dogs.”
My dog just doesn’t like black dogs. My dog just doesn’t like black dogs? Ah! Now I sound like the racist!
It isn’t a subject that’s easily broached. There is no good explanation, or at least none that I’ve come to find as of yet. Unfortunately, the word breedist isn’t in the vocabulary of many. I can’t easily say, “Sorry, breedist here,” and have someone else understand. So please, if you see me out there walking a slightly tubby, small-headed yellow Labrador, and I cross the street, it isn’t you. It’s her. Please don’t be offended.
Unfortunately, Mollie’s breedism only gets worse with age. I guess it’s just a part of the old lady package, and I’ll have to take what I can get. Her breedism is too far gone to counteract, but it may not be for the other breedists out there. If your dog is young and showing signs of breedism, act now, before it gets too late. Join me in stopping breedism, one dog at a time. The world will be a better place without it.
As for Mollie, she’s a lost cause. We can all do our best to try and stop breedism, but sometimes, we just have to love our dogs as they come, breedist tendencies and all.