Digital Media Center
Bryant-Denny Stadium, Gate 61
920 Paul Bryant Drive
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0370
(800) 654-4262

© 2024 Alabama Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

A Dog's Place in the House

Ahh, now this is cozy!
Taro the Shiba Inu [Flickr]
Ahh, now this is cozy!

How a pet fits into your household and into your life is often an evolving relationship, much like most of the other personalities that fill our lives!


Several years ago a friend sent me a letter and enclosed a small item about dogs. She clipped it from a magazine although she couldn’t remember which one. The author obviously had great insight into the twelve stages of a dog’s place in the household.

The first stage is that the dog can’t stay – there’s no room for a dog. Stage two, the dog can stay but it is not allowed in the house. The third stage - well, maybe the dog can come in the house but it must stay in the kitchen – okay, the kitchen and the den.

Stage four – all right, the dog can go into all the rooms, but it is not allowed on the furniture. In the fifth stage, the dog is not allowed on the new furniture, just on the old furniture. Stage six - the dog is allowed on all the furniture, but is not allowed to sleep with the humans on the bed.

Seven, Okay, the dog is allowed on the bed, but only by invitation. Stage eight, the dog can sleep on the bed whenever it wants to, but not under the covers. Nine, the dog can sleep under the covers but only by invitation.

Stage ten – fine, the dog can sleep under the covers every night. Stage eleven, the new king-size bed has enough room for the dog who likes to sleep sideways and still leave space for the humans. Finally, stage twelve – every night, the human picks up the dog, puts it on the bed, climbs in and turns off the light.

Many of you may recognize some or most of these stages. You understand how an animal, even a mutt, can find its way not only into your home but eventually, inevitably, into your heart. You have enjoyed the companionship of a special pet in your life.

If you would like to have a great companion like this, why not visit your local animal shelter this weekend, and give a homeless dog or cat a chance to become a part of your family. Who says you have to sleep alone, when you’re speaking of pets!


Mindy Norton has been “Speaking of Pets” on Alabama Public Radio since 1995.
News from Alabama Public Radio is a public service in association with the University of Alabama. We depend on your help to keep our programming on the air and online. Please consider supporting the news you rely on with a donation today. Every contribution, no matter the size, propels our vital coverage. Thank you.