As with many things in life our initial impression of an event changes between ‘then’ and ‘now’: the concern of the career crossroad eases once the new path becomes excitedly clear; the enjoyment of the late-night party dwindles when the alarm screeches the next morning; the delicious flavors from the weekend trashcan sour after our belly aches a few hours later. But if dogs followed the behaviors of people we would spend excessive hours in regret over past decisions even while zen-ishly licking our paws.
I’m Lazarus, a 13 year-old Plott Hound, who’s learned that life has its moments, and all are for rejoicing, none for regretting. As a trained hunter I don’t regret my bear-fight despite losing an eye and parts of my nose and tail. That experience earned me my curious name and led me to my new warm home.
But people are more complicated than dogs. They often have too much regret and not enough rejoicing. Why regret about where you have not traveled when you can rejoice in the smells of where you are now? Dogs take the time to examine the ever changing smells of where they are, making even the most routine daily life more interesting.
Don’t stress with emotional regrets when you can rejoice in the love of the animal next to you. Dogs say ‘I love you’ every time someone new enters the house and are not shy about making new friends. They might have food.
I visited family over the holidays and every time I needed to pee, it was a painful 24 stairs between my bed and my bathroom, but I rejoiced in the seasonal love (and my K9 Flexwell for joints). Regret vs Rejoice is all in the mindset.
Granted, a dog may immediately regret sniffing that mousetrap loaded with peanut butter but we rejoice in the brief exhilaration of our favorite food. It is continual happiness that makes us dogs.
Dogs don’t regret, we only rejoice. People should follow that rule.
(Lazarus lives with Biostar’s Rick Moore)