For the love of a dog — National Poetry Month

My children would like a dog. Really, really, really much. But, it’s so difficult. We travel a lot and we live in an apartment in the middle of a large city. We’d need a small dog, that doesn’t shed and that is easily housebroken. I keep trying to push the conversation to the background, not because I don’t want a dog, but because we need time to figure out what kind and how much and all that. We can’t just go out and buy the first dog we think looks cute.

But alas, the conversation surged back in full force a couple of days ago when we ran across this poem during reading time. And upon being reminded of what it means to love (and be loved by) a dog, I’m not so sure I want the decision delayed any further. Now, I too want a dog really, really, really much.


He sits and begs; he gives a paw;
He is as you can see,
The finest dog you ever saw,
And he belongs to me.

He follows everywhere I go
And even when I swim.
I laugh because he thinks, you know,
That I belong to him.

—Arthur Guiterman

There’s actually one more verse to this poem but it’s not printed in our edition of Poems to Read to the Very Young selected by Josette Frank. The entire poem can be read here.

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5 thoughts on “For the love of a dog — National Poetry Month

  1. We waited until our son was 5 (6?) before we got our dog. Then we adored him so much that we got another dog, so he wouldn’t be lonely!

    Now we can’t imagine life without them. They are two big bundles of unconditional love.

  2. I’m sure you’ll find just the right dog for your lifestyle.

    I wish my dog was like the one in the poem. She’s turned into a loner in her old age and doesn’t want to be around her people anymore. I almost resent it but she’s giving me a lot of good years.

  3. My dog is my fifth child. He is my shadow and light, sleeping soundly on the floor by my feet when I write. Pure love given without any expectations –except food and a nice long walk. Hope you make a great match.

  4. Miniature schnauzer’s don’t shed. They’re very smart, highly trainable and good with kids…if you don’t mind the excited barking that lasts for a minute or two when you get home! 🙂

  5. Do take time to research breeds and visit breeders so you can find the perfect dog to fit your lifestyle.

    Unfortunately, Shelties do shed and they’re medium-sized. Otherwise, I do think they’re lovely dogs. Very smart and friendly.

    New haircut?

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