She’s ‘Just a Dog’…

By Stephanie Conrad: She’s ‘Just a Dog’… and You are ‘Just a Person’…

Stephanie & ‘Holly Madison’  |

Nothing irritates me more than the question, “Why are you doing so much for ‘just a dog’?” —Stephanie Conrad, artist

To some people, rescue is confusing. They don’t understand why we put so much effort into each dog that comes into our lives. They see these loving four legged creatures as a nuisance, property or ‘things’ that are really unnecessary in the grand scheme of their lives. Personally, these people make me sad. Not only are they obviously heartless (who doesn’t love a puppy or a kitten?!?) but they are missing out on what I consider one of the best pieces of my life.

So I say to those individuals:

“To you, she is ‘just a dog’. She is never going to cure cancer. She is never going to be a super hero or save a baby from a burning building (although there are many other dogs that have done so…). She is never going to win a Grammy or star in the next hit film. She is never going to be more than ‘just a dog’……. but that is perfect because being a dog is exactly what I expect from her.

She will slobber on my feet as soon as I walk through the door. She will destroy many toys and spread white cotton stuffing all over my living room. She will absolutely have an accident in the house and I’m sure I will step barefoot in that cold puddle on the floor before I see it. She will track mud all over my freshly mopped kitchen and leave paw prints all over my new white shirt.

She will lick away my tears when I am sad and cuddle with me when I am sick. She will dedicate herself to me and shower me with adoring looks and wags so happy and fast that they knock her off her feet. She will rely on me to provide her with a loving home, full of kisses and hugs. She will know that she is loved and will never need to worry where her next meal will come from. She will never worry that she is going to be left at a shelter when her family moves away or be chained to a tree for her whole life because her family doesn’t want her to play in their garden. She will never worry that she will be neglected, abused or forgotten because to me, she is so much more than ‘just a dog’… she is MY dog.

Chances are, YOU are not going to be the next Grammy winner or cure cancer. Chances are, you are going to be an average human being, which is exactly what I would expect from you. Being average doesn’t make you unspecial… it just makes you… you. A person that deserves to be loved and treated with respect, just as my dog does. To you, she is ‘just a dog’… just as you are ‘just a person.’

So the next time you want to ask why I care so much about ‘just a dog’… ask yourself why your loved ones care so much about ‘just a person’ like you.”


About Stephanie Conrad:

The Pet Studio‘s owner is a self-taught artist who’s been exploring her creative side since before she can remember. Her passion allows her to give back to her community, work with many animal welfare organizations, educate on responsible pet ownership, showcase adoptable animals and raise money for animal charities through the Rescue Fund program. She shares her home with four fabulous rescues and a constant stream of fosters.