Dog Owner v/s Dog Carer, What Is The Difference?
18 Jun 2014
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With the ever growing pockets of families in our country. Families over the middle class stature are willing and able to afford many fancy assets with the intent to be noticed in the public view. New cars, bags and shoes have always been the element of preference when trying to flaunt one’s wealth.
It’s strange that families now have started considering dog as a social symbol of prosperity!
It is a widely accepted concept in Eastern Philosophy that owning a dog signifies wealth and prosperity. It is believed if you are able to sustain another life besides your own kin monetarily, you belong to a stable and content living.
Why are we discussing such a cultural issue? Mainly because all people who buy or already own a dog seem to believe their egos have been given a boost along with their stature because of being able to own livestock, quite similar to owning slaves a few decades ago.
But being able to own and fund a life that is not human does not necessarily depict one’s compassion towards beings of nature or the ability to care for any animal besides their own. Here are a few ways you can differentiate between a Dog Owner and a Dog Carer.
Who Is A Dog Owner?
One who adopts or purchases a pet dog. A dog owner is basically a term for every human who has shared space with a dog and opts to fund their living and health including food, vet bill etc. However, most dog owners employ domestic help for the care and companionship of the dog. So if a dog owner just pays for the dog and the only interaction they have in the day is petting and some form of play. Whereas, the rest of the time a helper is around to feed, walk and wash the dog; the dog owner itself cannot be really termed as the ‘master’ or in other words the ‘carer’.
Who is a Dog Carer?
This is an interesting term coined for all those people who are well involved with animals voluntarily and out of their own will. A Dog Carer can also defined as any individual who is primarily involved in the upbringing and welfare of the dog even if it is not their own dog. In most families today we have a culture of employing domestic help in assisting the families around daily chores and routines like washing, cleaning, cooking etc. Many dog owners have started to employ designated help for their dogs. This is infact a professional Dog Carer who will readily stay with the dog, accompany him in walks, help in washing and feeding of the dog.
How The Dog Sees It ?
For our simple minded canines, they do not have such superficial concepts of social strata or caste or economic hierarchy. A rich man and his servant are both humans for the dog. If the rich man has bought a dog but his servant spends most of the day with it, the dog will naturally be inclined to prefer the servant’s company more. The age-old misconception of ‘I feed the dog, I am his master’ is highly incorrect as the dog only knows authority by energy and not by money. As a behaviourist there are times where a dog responds better to the domestic help rather than the owner when training them obedience. This is the perfect reflection of how a dog has no concept of social standing.
So Who Are You? Owner or Carer?
There is no real comparison of measure where a dog carer is ‘better’ than the owner really. However, a carer get more attention and respect from the dog. There is nothing better than being a Dog Owner and Carer as one entity so that the dog not only respects your space but also respects your authority and discipline.
Another inspiring example of a Dog Carer if of the volunteers who work at the dog shelters for free! Their jobs include rescuing injured and abandoned dogs, feeding strays, cleaning up the waste as well as assisting vets in medical procedures. Volunteers are not paid for any of these welfare activities. On top of that, none of these dogs are their own either. Existence of such selfless beings with no ulterior or financial motive is very rare to find in proportion with ones who buy, sell, adopt and abandon at a faster pace than anyone.
Amongst this whole ordeal of segregation where do you lie? Do you only purchase a dog for attention and make others take care of it? Or do you not just take care of your own dog but others in the streets? Do you ever stand up against animal cruelty or do you follow, ‘to each his own concept’?
We would love to hear your views on these concepts as well as any stories that come to your mind when reading this piece.