We’re all use to hearing jokes and stories about crazy old cat-ladies but lately I have started noticing that woman are turning to dog adoption more and more. I tend to believe it’s because dogs are not just companions but also protectors. Now my dogs may be a poor example of what I’m talking about since they are so small and probably less intimidating than a cat even, but I would be lying to say that having them home with me on nights that my fiance is away does not help me to feel more secure. At the very least Ed and Eddy would be sure to alert me of any intruders. And when I walk them, especially when it is later towards the evening or in some backwoods trail, I do notice that strangers are less likely to approach me. Unless it’s to pet the dogs.
This is exactly the reason I believe that more woman have begun adopting dogs than in the past, and often big dogs at that. I know another lady my age who travels a lot on her own and so has had her big dog trained as an official guard dog, so he can help to support and protect her. This is such an awesome approach to traveling! I’m excited for women choosing to do this. Men have been training and using guard dogs since pretty much the start of mankind after all, maybe this is why dogs are known as man’s best friend. So now, as woman rise up into many work positions previously thought of as masculine or as woman become more independent in their travels and livelihood, it’s appropriate that dogs are seen as woman’s best friend too.
This rise I have noticed in ladies with doggy side-kicks prompted me to wonder what kind of a world we live in that violence and/or rape culture has become so prevalent that woman (and men too for that matter) can’t feel safe without a guard dog at their side. Again please don’t mistake me, I think it is wonderful that we have this option, I am just disappointed that we need it.
Fear of rape culture is not just a hype, I have seen it in action myself. I have also heard much victim blaming going around, even from cops. Was she alone at night? How short was her skirt? How low was her top? Did she speak to him first? What did she say? All of this is nonsense, the real question that I have is WHY DOES ANY OF THIS MATTER?!?! Why aren’t we asking more intrusive questions like this of the CRIMINAL instead of the victim? It seems clear to me that the victim has been through enough without society pointing it’s finger.
In my opinion the problem starts at a very young age. When I was a girl I heard it said again and again that ‘boys will be boys’. So when one little boy throws a punch at another little boy this line of thinking allows us to shrug it off, when a boy chases a girl around the play ground he ‘just has a crush’, when that boy pushes her over and steals a kiss we even smile, but when that same little boy shoves his hand down her shirt do we still respond with ‘boys will be boys’? What about when the little boy grows up and becomes a man who is still using that saying ‘boys will be boys’ when he gets involved in a drunken gang rape? Maybe we ought to blame the little girl’s parents from the start, they after all sent their seven year old out of the house wearing a tank top and shorts on a 100 degree day, what were they thinking? Perhaps if nobody ever showed any skin again we’d be safe, but then again that doesn’t seem to have worked all that well if we look to examples we see all around the world.
I am a firm believer that before we go anywhere or do anything, male or female, we ought to be as safe as we can and not try to start up drama. In this day and age NO ONE should be so gullible as to truly believe that everyone they meet wishes them kindness. I’ve seen and heard some shit and I’m positive that whoever is reading this has too. So let’s all be as conscious as we can about the world around us, let’s all try our best to make smart choices, and let’s all have some type of defensive strategy (whether it’s a dog, some pepper spray, some sweet martial arts moves, or even possibly a hand gun) in mind at all times. In addition though let’s all stop defending those who hurt us and our loved ones, and if you see someone struggling to overcome a hardship just offer your shoulder. We as a society have a lot we can learn from our furry companions.