Certainly one of life’s favorite simple pleasures is playing with a pet of some kind, depending on the type of pet you prefer. Although I’m allergic to cats, I think they’re super cute, so I’ve doodlewashed a little kitten for this post, who’d like to play with this ball of yarn, for those of you out there who can do so without sneezing. Kittens always seem to be up for a bit of play. My own pet, a tenacious basenji, will paw at me to get my attention, just as he’s doing now while I’m typing this. It’s less of an invitation to play and more of a provocation with a message of, “What you’re doing is stupid. Please stop that nonsense immediately and focus on me instead.” If you do so and attempt to play with him, he’ll look at you as though you’re crazy. Apparently, you were already playing a game and were just too dumb to realize it. He’ll soon just sneeze to express his displeasure with you and wander away to another room in the house. On some days, this inscrutable behavior really makes me wish I had a kitten.
But, of course, it’s my dog’s unique personality that ultimately makes him so interesting. And although I almost never understand the rules of the games he makes up, attempting to play them is still really fun. The connection with a pet is amazing. Without the benefit or distraction of babbling on about things, you’re forced to connect in much different ways. It’s such a soulful connection and one that works equally well with two humans, if they’re ever able to sit in silence together. Soon, after all the games have been exhausted you’ll still find Phineas the basenji curled up next to one or both of us. Despite our obvious shortcomings, he’s quick to forgive and happy to receive a bit of cuddling every now and then. And no matter how irritating he was in the moments prior, all is forgotten on our part as well. It’s a perfect circle of unconditional love.
There’s a lot to learn from the relationship between humans and animals. I’ve not even begun to understand all of it. A fact that Phineas will definitely concur with, based on his expressions. But I DO know that feeling love for the simplest of reasons is one of the most rewarding experiences in life. Those times that make us smile and feel a warmth and happiness that words just can’t express. There are always those milestone occasions. The ones with so many incredible things happening that it burns a full story into our memories. But I’m personally an even bigger fan of those tiny moments. The ones you almost miss if you’re not paying attention properly. These almost microscopic moments are the ones that stitch the very fabric of our happiness. A quilt of love that makes life far more amazing than it was, even just a tiny moment before. And so, I’ve just been told by my furry companion that it’s time to bid you farewell and focus on the very important matter of playing with a pet.
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About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Yellow Ochre, Terra Cotta, Opus (Vivid Pink), Cobalt Turquoise, Ultramarine Blue and Payne’s Gray. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with sepia ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book.
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Creator of Doodlewash®, founder of World Watercolor Month (July), World Watercolor Group™, and host of the Sketching Stuff Podcast. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world! If you’d like to be a guest artist on Doodlewash.com, contact me!