Not every dog is friendly

Stop Approaching Random Dogs Without Asking Their Owners

Just because you have a friendly dog doesn't mean you should approach someone with an aggressive one.

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While not all people may do this, there are definitely some who will approach any dog they see while they are with their dog just because theirs is friendly. Unfortunately, that can lead to fights between the two or more dogs due to their lack of consideration that the other dog could be aggressive.

Now, before I go into detail about this subject, I would like to say that I am not intending to judge those who do this. In fact, I used to be one of the people who only thought about the fact that my dog was friendly, and the only reason I found out about how it can affect others is that I ended up adopting a dog named Zoey, whom I found out afterward was aggressive towards other dogs.

My personal experience with my aggressive dog, Zoey, wasn't as bad as others may have experienced. She was an angel around people, but she struggled a little more around fellow canines. Thankfully after carefully introducing her to my family's other dog, Salty, they got along fine, although she definitely considered herself to be the dominant dog.

The biggest problem was on the walks. I would try to walk her every day, and although I live in a more forested area than a complete neighborhood, I would still often pass by other dogs. If they were behind a fence Zoey would pull and maybe bark, but not as much as when they were just across the street, or sometimes right in front of me. I often times would have to quickly cross the street, or sometimes even cut a walk short so that she wouldn't get aggressive and possibly hurt any dogs because the people were having no problem approaching me while walking in the middle of the road.

There were admittedly a few times where Zoey attacked other dogs, but the times it did happen, the dogs were on our property. We didn't have a fence on our property, but we also lived on 6 acres of forest, and our dogs were good about staying on our property. Because of this, we usually didn't have to worry about my dog while at home. The first dog she attacked was walked down to our house by people we knew, and the dog, named Roary, was known to be a generally nice dog, but Zoey was one of the dogs he would occasionally show some aggression towards, whether she showed it first or not. He had just gotten stitches from a surgery when he was brought down to our property, and Zoey was outside sunbathing while I was doing homework.

I didn't notice that Roary was there at first, but then I noticed Zoey was sniffing him while her hackles were up, but she hadn't done anything aggressive yet. I felt nervous so I started to go outside when I heard barking. I quickly rushed outside to see that Roary's stitches had been opened, most likely from Zoey and not from simple movements. Nobody was sure which dog started the fight, but we ended up driving Roary to the animal hospital and fully paid for the medical attention needed. He ended up being fine and mostly just needing to be restitched.

The second time was a very similar situation. I was at work when it happened, and I'm not sure which dog it was, but what I do know is that the dog was brought down to our property while Zoey was outside. It once again resulted in us bringing the dog to the animal hospital and fully paying for the medical expenses, and thankfully that dog ended up okay as well.

Unfortunately, after that, it was decided that it was becoming quite difficult to take care of Zoey due to her aggression, as well as the fact that it would have been much too stressful for my parents to take care of her once I began attending college. Because of this, I ended up having to give her away on October 5th, 2016, and I can still remember every detail of my last minutes with her before heading off to school.

When someone first sees a dog, the first thing that often comes to mind is "Awww it's so cute," and often times that can distract you from other aspects, such as subtle signs of aggression. Some that I would recommend looking for is dilated pupils, panting when it isn't very warm out, its tail is down or in between its legs, its hackles are up, even if it's just slightly, and/or its teeth are showing. These are just the behaviors I know of, but I'm sure there are many more that I have yet to learn and I would recommend looking into, most of which are caused by fear.

In the end, not every dog is friendly. No matter how lovable your dog might be, always keep in mind that the dog walking across the street from you might be aggressive towards other dogs, and make sure it's okay with the owner before approaching. I'm not saying to fear every dog, I'm just saying that if a dog is showing any sign of aggression, or the owner looks nervous and/or tense, then please give them space unless they say otherwise.

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Top 10 Cutest Cat Breeds

These cat breeds are super cute and underrated.
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It seems that the only breeds anyone can actually recognize are those of dogs, cats really don't get enough recognition. There is just as much of a variety of cat breeds as there are of dog breeds, almost anyway, and they deserve love and recognition as well. So, here are the top 10 cat breeds I've deemed as the absolute cutest!

1. Exotic Persian

Exotic Persian cats are one of the cutest breeds in my opinion. Theses are the squished faced cats. The cats that perpetually look grumpy and disappointed. They're also super high-maintenance and believe you're supposed to cater to their every whim. Which, to be fair, you are.

2. Scottish Fold

Scootish Folds are super adorable because they're very unique. They're ears fold over, making them always appear to be begging you for something. They also always look a little bit sad, which, of course, only makes you love them more.

3. Himalayan

Himalayan cats are just magnificent and so prestigious. These cats are fluffy, deserve the best, and expect nothing but the best.

4. British Shorthair

I'm not sure what it is about these cats that makes them so adorable, but my roommate has tried to describe them as "fat and sassy." - Delaney Pulice. She's not wrong. They're pretty chubby and look like they're just a little bit too good for you. In all honesty, what cat isn't too good for us?

5. Maine Coon

These cats are particularly wonderful because they can be giant. I mean, giant. These cats can grown into the sizes of large dogs, which, of course, if everything we could all ever ask for in a cat. Who wouldn't want a giant cat that could probably double as a pillow?

6. Persian

These cats are only a little bit different from Exotic Persians, but there's a difference. Persians tend to have less squished face than Exotics, but every cat is different. The one above is a Silver Persian. He had to eat his food off of a plate because his flat face couldn't fit in a cat food bowl.

7. Munchkin

These tiny little guys never really grow much. Their legs are perpetually short and stubby, making them the ideal cats, because, if you had a choice, wouldn't you want your cat to be either giant like a Maine Coon or tiny like a Munchkin cat? Of course you would.

8. Siberian

These cats are just generally beautiful. They have long, shiny, fluffy coats and are just pretty cats. Plus, they look super cuddly, like they might purr for hours if you brushed them.

9. British Longhair

Another just simply beautiful cat. When you see those posts online that say "This cat is prettier than I am," yeah, that's these cats. They have long, soft coats as well that they like to keep clean. And as all cats do, they look like they're just a little bit above us and we have to cater to them.

10. Ragdoll

Finally, we have Ragdoll cats. These cats look a bit like fluffier Siamese cats. Which, let's face it, Siamese cats aren't necessarily the cutest. However, if you just add a lot of fluff, because the fluffier the better, they become much cuter.

Cover Image Credit: Megan Branch

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From A Rescue Dog: Thank You For Putting Me On A Chain

You tried to keep me chained to a tree, but I found my forever home in someone's arms.

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When I was a puppy, I saw different families come to get my brothers and sisters and take them home. I was sad, but I knew my day was coming. I knew that soon, I would have a family come get me. Then, you came. You picked me. I thought it was the happiest day of my life!

When we first got home, you let me stay inside. I thought I was the luckiest puppy in the world. But, I started having accidents in the house. I didn't know any better. I spent all day inside by myself; what was I supposed to do? I also chewed up a few things: sunglasses, shoes, and a hat to be exact. But, isn't that what puppies do? You fussed at me, a lot. I swear I didn't know it was going to make you mad, or I promise I wouldn't have done it. After a few days, you'd had enough. You took me outside. I thought we were going in the yard to play. I didn't know I'd never go inside again.

You took me to a tree in the backyard and attached a chain to my collar. It was so heavy. I didn't know what was happening. You left me a bowl of food and a bowl of water but nothing else. I didn't have a dog house or any toys. I heard you say that I didn't deserve it. I wish you knew how sorry I was. I hated being outside all by myself. I cried all night. I cried every night for a few weeks, but I eventually gave up. It wasn't doing anything.

You used to come to bring me fresh food and water every day, but after a few months, you began to forget about me. You gave me food and water maybe once a week. Do you have any idea how hot I was in the summer? Especially when you forgot to give me more water. The winter was even worse. I was freezing cold every single night. I'd wake up in the mornings covered in frost.

My whole body ached. Your kids would be outside playing, and they wouldn't come near me anymore. I had fleas. I didn't smell good. I probably looked scary because I was so skinny; you could see almost all of my bones. I was heartbroken. When you'd come outside, I'd bark because I wanted your attention. You didn't care... I lived outside on this chain for almost a year. I was hopeless. I was stuck. My heart was broken. I wished you loved me back.

Then, one day while you were all gone, a lady saw me. Neither of us knew it then, but the second she looked into my eyes, I became hers. She had a place in her heart just for me. She noticed I didn't have any food or water, so she gave me some. She was so nice. I got hugs and kisses; I had forgotten what those felt like. She even let me give her kisses back! The lady left, and I was so sad. I thought about her all night. Apparently, she thought about me all night, too. Because, the next day, she came back.

I saw her talking to you, but I didn't know what was going on. She walked over to me and took my collar off. I was a little confused, but it felt so good to not have my neck weighed down by the heavy chain. I jumped on her and gave her so many kisses. She didn't yell at me like you used to. She just smiled with tears in her eyes. She called me to follow her to her car. I looked for you, but you had gone back inside. I wouldn't ever see you again. This was actually the happiest day of my life.

She took me to her home, and she let me go inside. She put me in the bathtub, and I was scared at first, but it felt so good to be clean. After my bath, she gave me food and water. I ate and began to feel much better. She let me sit on the couch with her, and I fell asleep with her rubbing my belly. I woke up, and she took me outside. I was so scared I wasn't going to get to come back in, but I did! She let me come back in. That night, I slept in the bed with her. I was so happy.

This is my life every day now. I get to love her, and she loves me back. I am so thankful that she saved me. I'm not outside in the heat or freezing cold. I'm not hungry or thirsty. I'm not neglected. I'm not abused. I'm with her. I am taken care of.

I hope you never get another dog. You don't deserve one. But, thank you for getting me. Thank you for leaving me on a chain. Without you, I wouldn't have found my forever home. I wouldn't know what love is. I wouldn't get to love my human every single day. She loves me more than you ever could. So, thank you.

Love,

A Rescue Dog

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