It has been my experience that a deep bond with a dog is rarely an immediate development. I’m not talking love at first sight as this is not necessarily an unusual occurrence when a human and dog meet. And then for some there is an undeniable instant connection, a kind of knowing that you belong together. But what is not instant, what does not happen at first sight, is a deep unbreakable bond.
The bond between a dog and a human develops as the two get to know each other. When the excitement of the first few days together morphs into a more regular routine, the human and dog observe and learn each other’s habits and quirks. Pretty simple, standard fare in the scheme of things. But it’s what’s happening underneath the surface that really counts…the building of trust. An unbreakable bond is wrapped in trust.
If a dog is important to us we try and do all the right things. We buy the best dog food, the fluffiest bed, the most durable toys. We get them vet care and proper training. These are good things. Important things. But in and of themselves they don’t mean much if we ignore the core of the relationship and that is trust. A dog will forego a meal, abandon a toy and sleep on a concrete floor if it means they get to be with the one they trust. The one with which they have a bond like no other. Trust takes time.
I think we do new pet owners a disservice if we don’t teach them that it takes more than proper, textbook care to build an unbreakable bond. It takes many things like patience, effort and keen observation. Add in love, play and quiet time as well. Above all else it is respect for another living being sharing a place with us on this planet. Sharing each other’s lives, building trust and in return being blessed an unbreakable bond.