Not all dogs are bad!

A dog sniffing a laptop and trying to type.
Illustration by Vanessa Lennon

Dear Olivia,

Why do some people say dogs are bad?  I know sometimes we can get upset. We have feelings like everyone else. But not all dogs are bad. When someone says a dog “turns on you,” it seems like a silly complaint. You have to turn around to sit down!

Oh, Babbie says that “turning on someone” means something not nice. Sorry. No one ever explains this stuff until after I’ve typed it.

See, someone on the news said the dog “turned on its owner” and that the owner got hurt. But maybe there was just some kind of confusion?

Remember the other day when you accidentally stepped on my tail when I was sleeping? I growled for a second ‘cuz I was half asleep. Once I got all wakey-wakey I was okay. I even apologized to you and let you pet me! I was just sleepy-scaredy-confused. It happens to everyone!

I don’t think dogs are really bad. I bet they’re just scared sometimes. Not every dog can type, and humans never seem to understand when we talk, so stuff gets misunderstood. A lot.

I think that happens with humans too, am I right? Maybe sometimes instead of saying that you’re scared or upset, you get snappy.

It sounded like you were going to bite your brother’s face off yesterday, all ‘cuz he got better grades than you on a test. But he was studying all weekend, while you went to a slumber party. Maybe it’s a trade-off kind of thing?

I don’t think most dogs or most people are bad. I think they just need to be understood. Or maybe they’re scared because someone understands them and knows that they’re scared, if that makes sense. It makes sense to me at least.

Just for the record, I am a GOOD dog, and if I ever snap at you, it’s just because you woke me up. I love you!



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