Thursday, February 3, 2011

Another damn dog post

A change, at least, from mooning over the Lost Girls. Here once again is Ravi, among the five or six of the World’s Best Dogs, at the rather grim “Hardy Dog Park” in Oakland’s fashionable Rockridge district. A passerby snapped him there a couple of Sundays ago, and kindly forwarded the digital image. Canines are on the mind because I have lately read of this appalling slaughter of sled dogs in Canada, which has set me to reflecting on the long partnership between our two great species.

Humanity and Canis lupus familiaris came to an arrangement a long time ago, the terms of which are heavily weighted in favor of the primate party. The more time I spend around dogs, the more impressed I am that they consent to the partnership. If the other animals with whom we share this planet could be raised to a level of abstraction that would permit them to grasp the concept of “evil,” and to assign a form factor thereunto, humans would embody that satanic slot. And yet, dogs, those ever-hopeful collaborators, like us. We would be a much lonelier species without them.

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