Pet Parenting
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6 Ways My Dog and I Are Exactly Alike

We both like PDA on our own terms, and we're always ready for fun -- except when we're hungry.

Wendy Newell  |  Feb 4th 2016


You’ve heard about people and their dogs looking alike. This doesn’t apply to Riggins and me, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t twins in other ways.

Riggins is a 10-year-old black-and-white male mutt. I’m a tall, 41-year-old Caucasian woman. Before you get to know him, we seem like a bit of an odd couple. More than once I’ve been asked which dog at the dog park is mine, and when I point to my sweet boy, the response is, “Oh. That one?”

Riggins and Wendy (Photo by Lori Fusaro)

Riggins and Wendy (Photo by Lori Fusaro)

We are two peas in a pod, though. In many ways, my sweet baby boy is the apple that didn’t fall far from the tree. Who knows if it is because I raised him to be my Mini Me or if we were just lucky to find each other. Like many dog-parent duos out there, we are the perfect fit. Here are a few ways we are more alike than you might notice at first:

1. Loyalty to our pack

Riggins and a few of his pack mates including Luna, the dalmatian (All photos by Wendy Newell unless otherwise noted.)

Riggins and a few of his packmates, including Luna the Dalmatian. (Photo by Wendy Newell)

Riggins and I both tend to give people the benefit of the doubt. That is, unless they smell weird or look really creepy. We will happily hang out with you and share some fun times. If you wrong us personally, we may give you the cold shoulder, but it may be a forgivable offense. If you hurt one of our friends, we will make you pay!

As a dog sitter, Riggins has a pack that is ever-changing, but he looks out for everyone, especially those pups who are regulars. One day I had to leave the house for a bit. I separated the dogs into two areas of the room so they were sharing space with dogs of the same temperament and size. Luna, a deaf Dalmatian who is with us one night a week, was in the kitchen with a couple of pups, while Riggins was in charge of the living room area. They could see each other, but couldn’t move back and forth between the rooms.

When I got home I noticed Luna had a cut on her head. It looked like a scratch from a tooth because of rough play. I didn’t have to wonder who the culprit was, because as soon as I opened the gate between the two rooms, Riggins went straight to an overanxious puppy and put him in his place!

2. PDA on our own terms

Cuddle time.

Cuddle time. (Photo by Wendy Newell)

Riggins loves to cuddle. When he wants love, he will do anything to get it — walk up to strangers, jump on your lap, force your hand on his head, anything. When he is over it, he is over it, and trying to initiate more lovin’ just makes him look back at you in disgust, as if to say, “Control yourself!”

His mom is the same way. I even have a similar look.

3. Sufferers of hunger

"Put some food in my belly." - Riggins (Photo by Lori Fusaro)

“Put some food in my belly” – Riggins. (Photo by Lori Fusaro)

You don’t want to be near either of us when hunger turns us into angry beings with little to no tolerance for anyone or anything. Riggins will sit and bark at me for as long as it takes to get fed. His bark goes from a reminder, to urgent, to pleading, and finally to full-on pissed off!

I bark, too. At people with demands. It’s not our fault. We don’t mean to be such horrible monsters. We are just hungry!

4. Easily amused with a short attention span

Riggins makes a leap towards a tennis ball.

Riggins leaps towards a tennis ball. (Photo by Wendy Newell)

Riggins and I are both high energy. It’s hard to pin us down and keep our attention for long. Luckily, we are easily amused.

For Riggins, nothing makes him happier than chasing tennis balls at the park. They don’t have to be thrown far; heck, they don’t even have to be entirely intact. They just need to be moving in a direction away from him so he can give chase. He isn’t going to bring them back, of course. That’s too much trouble, but for a good 15 minutes, you will have his undivided attention.

Me? I’m the gal who wants to watch a half-hour sitcom with a solid beginning, middle, and end, with a few giggles thrown in now and then. Some people think sitcoms aren’t good TV, but I think it’s the best way to spend some down time!

5. Always ready for fun

This kid isn't going to be left out of fun!

This kid isn’t going to be left out of fun! (Photo by Wendy Newell)

Neither Riggins nor I like to be left out of fun. Now that Riggins is 10, I am trying to cut back on the number of long hikes he does with the pack. He is not happy with this arrangement and is always trying to sneak into the car on his off days.

I live by the motto taught to me by my own mother, “Never say no to fun.”

6. Looks

Almost twins!

Almost twins!

Despite not looking alike, we do actually have some similar features:

  • Riggins is black. I wear lots of black, almost exclusively.
  • Riggins has striking pumpkin-colored eyes. I have striking blue-colored eyes.
  • Riggins has a broad chest. I have broad shoulders.
  • Both Riggins and I are deceivingly strong, which isn’t noticed on first glance but upon second when you see the muscle tone (him more than me, if I’m being super honest).
  • Both of us have adorable short hair that can be easily messed up by sweat, slobber, or sleeping wrong.
  • Both of us have big ol’ super-white teeth.
  • Both of us have long, narrow faces.
  • Both of us are ridiculously adorable, if I do say so myself.

So, you see, we may not be the typical mom-son duo, but we are two of a kind and the absolute perfect match.

How are you and your dog alike? Let us know and share a picture of the two of you together in the comments!

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About the author: Wendy Newell is a former VP of Sales turned Grade A Dog Sitter. After years of stress, she decided to leave the world of “always be closing” to one of tail wags and licks. Wendy’s new career keeps her busy hiking, being a dog chauffeur, picking up poo, sacrificing her bed, and other fur-filled activities. Wendy and her dog, Riggins, take their always-changing pack of pups on adventures throughout the Los Angeles area, where they live together in a cozy, happy home. You can learn more about Wendy, Riggins, and their adventures on Facebook and Instagram.