I had an interesting conversation the other day. I sat down with my brother’s dog to paint him and he opened up to me about how a dog’s life has been during the COVID pandemic. Here’s what he had to day.
“Humans are right when they talk about a “dog’s life.” It is pretty good. Most of the time my brother and his wife keep my house clean and maintained so I don’t have to worry about that. They drive my car when I need to get stuff at that store and they pay for everything. They feed me often and are always giving me the treats I demand. Yep, a dog’s life is normally pretty good.
With all this social distancing stuff, however, it’s different. They spend more time watching the news, time they’d normally spend with me. And when they take me for a walk they avoid other humans and never stand around talking to them. So, I never get to rub noses with dogs kept by other humans. I don’t get to meet up with my friends and I never get to run around off my leash anymore. I’m more isolated than humans because at least they have that thing they call the internet where they sit and talk to computer screens, laugh while watching videos, and stuff like that. I just lay on the floor hoping for a better tomorrow.”
His name is Opie and when he was done talking, I had a new appreciation for what dogs are going through right now. We need to show them more empathy, maybe showing them a dog video or three.
I painted Opie in gouache, a medium I’m trying to learn. The notion of “painting” anything is new to me. Opie liked the result and said I made him look regal. I call the painting “A dog’s life.”