I enjoy quiet and solitude. Sometimes I have to leave my house to find a quieter place to read or write.   I jokingly tell my husband and children that I believe they are allergic to quiet.  I’m also very independent, so I usually don’t depend on others to give me what I need. My point is: Based on my independent nature and seeming need to be apart from people, I had always likened myself to a cat. Now I realize that the more I write, the more I am becoming like a dog.

      In her book, I Could Tell You Stories, Patricia Hampl compares the reader to a cat and a writer to a dog. I know many people who are afraid of cats, and I wonder if it because they are unpredictable. People often fear the unknown. And in that sense, a reader can be scary too. A writer fears  a reader’s reaction, which is often unpredictable. A reader could bear her claws and rip  a writer’s confidence to shreds. A dog, however, is always seeking to feed its belly and its own ego, and in doing so, it  often feeds the ego of the one who gives it the love or attention it seeks. Both parties are satisfied. In the past, I had seen dogs as inferior to cats. Cats seemed cool and self assured, and dogs were always whining and begging for attention. I would watch them run to and fro, mark their territory, and seek reassurance and confirmation that they were “good.”
        Last night after I posted my first blog, I found myself panting and waiting for someone to read it.  Actually, I begged my friends on Facebook to read it, and then sent an inbox message to two others. “Tell me what you think,”  I wrote as I sat wagging my imaginary tail. I was insecure and needed someone to pat my head and say, “good girl.”   Needless to say, I have become more compassionate in regards to man’s best friend. I now understand their innate desire to love and be loved. It is an endearing character trait. Last night, I wanted someone to throw me a bone and let me know I would have someone to play with if I just kept coming back. I am grateful to my first readers who posted their comments. They were a confirmation that I should keep going. Now, I still respect and understand that a cat does not need this, but like most dogs, and most people, I do.