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Good Enough For My Dog

AI generated image of a brown and white King Charles Cavalier Spaniel asleep in the sun. Generated by Co-pilot AI
AI generated image of a brown and white King Charles Cavalier Spaniel asleep in the sun. Generated by Co-pilot AI

As I get to know you there’s something that we often have in common … we have canine companions. So, for the dog lovers, you’ll totally relate to this story (I hope).

My “first child” is MacGyver “Mac” a 13-year-old Cavalier King Charles. If you have visited me in Hope Valley office then you probably met Mac. He was the furry one asleep on a chair and probably snoring (very) loudly.

When I come through the door at home, Mac is always ready to greet me. He looks up with eager anticipation, excitement growing until his whole body is wagged by his tail. I kneel down and he pops up on my knee for pats, a lick (he licks me, not the other way around) and I tell him how handsome he is and I ask about his day.

Shamelessly, I do have a “dog voice” reserved for only talking to canine companions. (but, I don’t talk this way to cats … that’s another voice).

When I leave the house, Mac often looks at me with disappointment (I think) and my internal Mac voice says “You’re leaving me again, I kept you company all night, this morning you told me you loved me, and now you’re leaving me again.”

Yes, I have Dog Dad guilt.

But when I come home, it doesn’t matter what kind of day I have had, I’m greeted with the same level of enthusiasm. “You’re home, you’re home, I’ve missed you so much, you’re home, oh I can’t believe it, you’re home, I will never leave your side.” It’s quite a triumphant way to come home. Only occasionally do I get an enthusiastic greeting from my own children. But nothing that matches the energy and enthusiasm of my canine pal.

But I do have an overactive guilt drive. Recently I arrived at the office and my conscience kicked in. “I left him again. All he wants is my company.” What if I’m not the hero my dog thinks I am?” “What if I don’t live up to his expectations?” “Am I enough for him?” “Does he really know me, what if I’m not who he thinks I am?”

For the record, I have NEVER had these thoughts about any human relationship. And why these thoughts on this day!

On arriving home. A triumphant greeting. The hero has returned.

This pure heart. Eager to love. Excited to see me. The worst thing he has ever done is to steal a packet of Favourites chocolates and to eat them wrapper and all – and poop them out. Hardly a crime (except for the expensive vet bill).

Yes, I air kiss my dog and I don’t understand people who don’t.

And it turns out that I am enough.

I’m good enough for my dog.

He tells me every day. And I trust his judgement.

And it feels good.


— Husband, Father, shameless Dog Dad and Massage Guy —

David Clayton is the Principal Remedial Therapist at Myomasters Massage located in Hope Valley in the north east of Adelaide.  He has a passion for supporting humans to live the lives they were to born to live using massage and soft tissue therapies.  He has a particular interest in assisting people to recover from stress, anxiety and trauma using compassionate and nurturing touch.