You may love your dog more than your spouse
You talk to anyone who will listen about how much you love your dog. In fact, you positively gush over how cute your dog is or how well behaved they are, or how they look at you with their big beautiful eyes and their tongue hanging out. They are awesome after all and you think to yourself… gosh how much do I actually love my dog? Is it possible that I love my dog more than my spouse? After all, my spouse doesn’t have puppy dog eyes. My spouse doesn’t jump up and run over to me every time I walk through that door. My spouse isn’t as soft and as cuddly.
I’m here to tell you that you are not alone. Don’t be ashamed of your feelings. Your spouse will probably understand that your pet is just as much, if not more, a part of the family. But before you jump into marriage counselling, let’s take a look at the signs just to be sure.
You take and post more pictures of your dog
Go to your camera roll, or Instagram feed and scroll through all your photos. It’s okay, I’ll wait… What do you see? Are there more pictures of your dog or your spouse? I’m not here to judge. I understand. Your dog is so photogenic, who can blame you? Your dog probably has more Insta-worthy moments than your spouse. And besides, people love your dog’s photos. Does this sound like you? You may love your dog more than your spouse. Advice? Don’t forget to take a couple of snaps with your spouse just to even it out a little. People love seeing those too (we think)!
Your dog gets way more treats
Everybody loves treats – humans and canines alike. But if you find yourself always giving your dog treats or making them special dinners while your spouse is left to fend for themselves, you may love your dog more than your spouse. It’s so hard not to reward your dog with treats and special dinners – they are just so darn adorable! It can be something that you’re doing and you may not even be aware! Advice? Take notice… is your spouse hungry? Are they feeling left out? Start by asking questions to see how your spouse feels.
You cuddle your dog way more than your spouse
When you come home, do you give your dog more cuddles or your spouse? I bet your dog comes running and is the first to greet you at the door so it can be easy to give your dog all the attention (plus they are adorable). It’s not like you mean to occasionally ignore your spouse – they just aren’t your dog. We get it. While it’s okay to be excited to see your dog, don’t forget your spouse needs a little bit of attention too! Your spouse may not wag their tail at you and whine for belly scratches, but that doesn’t mean your spouse doesn’t want some love. Advice? Make sure to give your spouse a hug too when you come home.
You pay for private health care for your dog and your spouse gets public health care
Having a dog is expensive, you tell yourself so it’s only fiscally responsible to have pet insurance, right? You want your pet to have the best care and you don’t want to have to worry about not having the money to provide it. But then when your spouse is waiting for medical care or needs to go to physio for example, they are stuck on a public health plan waitlist and you tell them it’s fine. A lot of the time, our furry friends get better medical treatment than their owners! Advice? Health is important for your dog and spouse alike, so if you don’t do it already, you should prioritize the health of your spouse as much as your dog.
You have a pet name for your dog… but not your spouse
Do you love to give your dog cute pet names like Bo, Bae, Red, Princess, Pumpkin or something similar? All the while, your spouse is just plain old Tim, Barb or Karen. Does this sound like you? You may love your dog spouse more than your spouse. You might not even realize that you’re doing it, but you’re playing favouritism, whether your spouse notices it consciously or not. Advice? Pet names can be fun for both your dog and your spouse. It’s all a matter of finding one that fits. Give it a try!
You’d rather sleep beside your dog
As George Takei would say, ‘Oh Myyyy.” Most dog owners will sympathize with you on this one. Your dog is soft, fluffy warm and adorable while your spouse tosses and turns and maybe even snores and hogs the covers (okay who are we kidding, the dog has all of the covers). While sleeping with your spouse when you were newly-wed was exciting and romantic, as you are together longer, it can become more of an inconvenience than anything else. Does this sound like you? Not to worry – this can be easily remedied. Buy a king-size bed, so there’s enough room for everyone. Problem solved.
If you’ve nodded your head to any of the above, then you might love your dog more than your spouse. But that’s okay. In fact a survey done by PoochPerks found that most dog owners admitted to being more devastated by their pet running away than a breakup, so you’re not alone.
Any relationship is hard, and they take a lot of work. It can be easy to love a pet whose only job is to love and adore you. On the other hand, I bet you probably expect more out of your spouse. (At least I’m hoping that you do!) It is important to acknowledge your feelings and try to treat your spouse equally with your pet. Whatever you do, talking openly and honestly, while challenging, is the best policy. You’ll find that it will bring you closer together as an entire family.
Whatever the case, you don’t have to choose between your spouse and your dog. In fact, it’s best if you all do things together and spend some time as a family. Valentine’s Day is coming up which will give you an opportunity to reconnect and do something fun. Find activities like a walk in the park or visit a dog-friendly restaurant or café. Can you say dinner for three, please?