Sunday, May 31, 2015

I Am a Helicopter Dog Mom

"Helicopter parents are so named because, like helicopters, they hover overhead." ~Wikipedia

I am a helicopter dog mom. I do hover overhead all the time. I am only happy when I can see what my dog is doing at all times.

I'm happiest when I'm close enough to be able to take photos of her adventures.

I don't necessarily intervene but I am not happy when I don't know exactly where my dog is and what they're doing.

There were conversations at the farm that got interrupted because Jasmine wandered around the house. I didn't have to follow her. She spent all weekends at the farm, was a smart girl and knew what she was doing. The odds of her getting herself into trouble were microscopic.

And yet, whoever I was having a conversation with had two choices. Either walk around the house with me or put the conversation on hold.

Yes, I do recognize it's obsessive.

Doesn't mean I can really help it. It's simple. When I can't see my dog, I suffer separation anxiety. Not because I fear they might not ever come back, but because I fear they might get in trouble and I wouldn't be there to save them.

I was so happy when I found out that helicopter parenting might be actually good for dogs!

What a relief.

With Cookie it's not that simple. I'm only happy when I can see her. But she needs to run through the bush, chasing things. I'd be happier if I had her literally glued to my hip. But her happiness wins. I let her run, explore the bush and chase stuff because it makes her happy.

Today she chased off some hawks that were hovering above her property. She gets very upset with them; probably because they are snatching her mice.

I wish I was an actual helicopter.

One of the little ones out there now, very fast and very agile. Then I could buzz over her head no matter where she goes.

Becoming a werewolf would be awesome too.

One of those that can change back and forth at will. Then I could run with her through the bush, help her chase things and protect her from any threat. Such as the black bear who's back snooping around. We've been seeing signs of his presence and the other day he just happened to be waltzing across the street when I came out on a deck.

Until then I just have to suck it up.

Such as when she's digging a tunnel in a groundhog pile. What if the thing collapsed on her? What if the groundhog bit her? What if she tripped over one of the logs?

My mom had a mother like that; wasn't allowed to go anywhere, do anything. I am not going to do that to Cookie. Much.

"Kids have to play," our granny used to say. We loved her for it. She understood that it means that we'll get dirty, break something every now and then, or might get hurt. 

Meanwhile, I'm just happy that my neuroticism is actually, scientifically, good for her. 

Though I bet she would disagree if I wasn't biting my lip much of the time.

Fortunately, other than requiring an outlet for her wild side, she actually enjoys all the attention and care. So at least I get to make up for the horror of letting her run free, out of sight, after we come back home. Everybody is happy then.

I guess life is all about finding the balance between what we want, and what the others want.

Are you a helicopter pet parent? Do you allow your dogs do things outside your comfort zone?

Source article:
Helicopter Parenting Might Be Good for Pets

Further reading:
Helicopter parenting better for pets than for kids

Related articles:
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A Thought On Separation Anxiety
Happy One-Year Adoptoversary, Cookie!
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