Guy Code To Owning A Dog: What Every Clueless Idiot Needs To Know

Credit: Getty Images

Dogs are not toys. Dogs are not fashion accessories. Dogs are not your children. If you disagree with any of these self-evident truths, you should not–under any circumstances–own a dog, or any other living creature for that matter.

A golden calf symbolized idol worship in biblical times; now it’s a $3,000 purebred Maltese or Pom Pom, living in opulent splendor beyond the wildest fantasies of most people throughout history, including pharaohs. Modern Americans’ relationships with our canines have crossed the line from decadent to depraved. It’s shameful for humans and even worse for the dogs.

These unqualified pet owners aren’t limited to second-generation Paris Hilton acolytes. Many guys have utterly forgotten how to treat man’s best friend. Here’s a necessary reminder… because it’s a dog’s life. And it’s also Guy Code.

1. Train It, You Lazy Moron

Photo via Cheezburger

Obedience school enrollment was once commonplace, but nobody bothers to discipline their dogs for bad behavior anymore. (They just reward dogs for all behavior.) When your adult dog still pees and s**ts on potty-training mats for newborn pups, it disgusts your house guests just as much as if you did it.

When your dog jumps up on strangers, do you shout “DOWN, DOWN, BAD DOG,” or bop it on the snout with a newspaper? Of course you don’t; you just shrug apologetically and helplessly, because you’re incapable of acting like a responsible master. (Also, because nobody buys newspapers anymore.)

2. Do Not Carry It In Your Purse (Or, God Forbid, Your Murse)

Credit: Getty Images

For centuries, humans walked dogs–first on hunting expeditions, and then around suburban cul-de-sacs–but modern Americans would never dream of burdening pets with any form of exercise, other than dog yoga (or “doga,” which is the most offensive four-letter word in the English language). We are the fattest, most slovenly nation on earth, so it’s no surprise that 53% of our dogs are overweight or obese. Speaking of which…

3. Do Not Feed Your Dog Filet Mignon

Photo via Weknowmemes

Dogs are perfectly happy to taste-test each other’s rectums, all right? They aren’t sophisticated foodies with refined palates, and they don’t care whether produce is organic and GMO-free. That giant $20 bag of Kibbles ‘n Bits (actual ingredients: “bone meal,” “animal digest”) will satisfy your dog’s undiscriminating hunger, so why not give the extra money–which you can apparently spare–to hungry humans capable of distinguishing between delicacies and gruel?

4. Scoop! Scoooooooooooop!

Credit: Getty Images

Maybe I’m biased as a New Yorker, because this city is one giant toilet, but it seems that 99% of modern dog owners are content to leave their dogs’ excrement on the sidewalk for pedestrians to step in. Clearly $250 fines aren’t a severe enough deterrent, so we must re-institute the death penalty ASAP, preferably without trial.

5. Do Not Keep A Dog In An Apartment

Photo via Quickmeme

Dogs need a backyard to romp around in, and a five-minute stroll to the bodega after you get home from work doesn’t count. If you lock a dog up in a cramped studio all day long, you’re no better than Michael Vick. Actually you’re worse, because at least Vick let his dogs outside to fight.

6. Do Not Bring Your Dog On Airplanes

…unless it’s in the cargo hold (or you’re blind and need a seeing-eye dog, obviously), because animals aren’t carry-on luggage. Let’s allow comedian Rob Delaney to complete this thought:

7. Do Not Pay A Breeder Thousands Of Dollars

Credit: Getty Images

Go to a shelter and save a dog’s life for like a hundred bucks. If you’re that obsessed with status, dress it in a dog tuxedo.

8. Do Not Dress Your Dog In A Stupid Costume*

Photo via Imgace

Have some dignity–if not for your sake, then for your dog’s.

* Except on Halloween, Christmas and Victory Over Japan Day.

9. Make Your Dog STFU

Photo via Quickmeme

The First Amendment doesn’t apply to the animal kingdom. I’ve had neighbors whose dogs never stop barking–all day and all night long, it’s yap yap yap yap yap–but when I suggested they purchase battery-powered, mild shock collars to end this maddening cacophony, they looked at me as if I were heartless. (Which I am, but that’s beside the point.)

Soon, humanity–no longer willing to command beasts, merely collect them–will become a domesticated species, just like in “Planet Of The Apes,” except Caesar won’t lead the revolutionary conquest; it’ll be Fido.

10. Put It Down When The Time Comes

Photo via Diylol

A man shouldn’t cry often, but when your dog passes away you’re gonna bawl, ’cause it’s the saddest thing ever. Saying goodbye at the vet’s office is beyond difficult, but forcing a dog to suffer long-term because you’re too cowardly and inhumane to alleviate its misery is beyond cruel. Instead of a merciful end to an otherwise good life, people nowadays put their sickly dogs in diapers and wheelchairs. Euthanasia ain’t easy, but at some point it’s the right thing to do. (At least for dogs… it’s still illegal most places for senior citizens.)

That said, if I get to heaven and my childhood Newfoundland doesn’t tackle me upon arrival and lick my face like in “What Dreams May Come,” then I have no interest in staying.

+Follow Guy Code on TwitterFacebook and Tumblr

Marty Beckerman (@martybeckerman) is the Associate Editor of Guy Code Blog