02/08/2015 05:10 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Valentine, Smalentine: 14 Ways Having a Dog Trumps Having a Man

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1. Despite the occasional bathroom accidents, dogs are way neater than men.

Dogs do not leave empty salsa containers, beer bottles, or boxer shorts lying around the house, nor do they leave dirty coffee mugs or food containers in the car. In fact, if you give your dog food in a to-go container, he will not only eat all the food, he will actually eat the container too.

2. Dogs can actually find things all by themselves.

They can locate their toys, their beds, their food bowls, the kernel of popcorn wedged under the sofa cushion, all without your assistance. Therefore, they will never stand in front of the refrigerator with the door wide open calling, "Where is the leftover chili? I can't find it."

3. Dogs do not want you to be all thin and waif-like.

If fact, the sight of you eating well and heartily and often is the most beautiful sight in the world to your dog, and nothing is more gratifying to him than sitting at your feet watching you eat a huge bowl of ice cream.

4. Dogs do not care what you wear.

In fact, their favorite outfit is your favorite outfit -- the pair of yoga pants and Chacos you wear 362 days a year. Your dog thinks you look simply amazing in this ensemble, and he will never, ever stare longingly after a woman wearing a two-inch long skirt and stilettos -- unless, of course, she is eating a bowl of ice cream.

5. With dogs, there is no pressure to be fresh or exciting.

Dogs enjoy even the most mundane tasks -- dropping off a bag of clothing at Goodwill, walking to the mailbox, etc. In fact, your dog will simply flip out if you just put him in the car and drive him around the same block you have been driving him around for the last 10 years.


6. Likewise, dogs are not back seat drivers, nor are they micromanagers about what happens inside the car.

They are happy to go whichever way you choose, at whatever speed you choose, with the cruise control either on or off, the defrost on whatever setting you think best. Your dog will never try to change your country music station to a heavy metal station. He will love that you love to turn the seat heaters to high, the heat to 85 degrees. And if you happen to suddenly change lanes without signaling in the midst of rush hour traffic, no big deal. Your dog will simply hang his head out the window and smile.

7. With dogs, you do not have to pretend you are interested in things you are not -- the Super Bowl, the proper technique for chopping wood, war movies, and so on.

What's more, dogs are actually interested in whatever you are interested in. Jazz concerts by the lake? Awesome. Poetry readings at a local bookstore? Terrific. Any movie starring Johnny Depp? Fantastic.

8. Dogs are not particular about how their meat is cooked.

If you serve your dog a steak that is, say, ever-so-slightly charred on the bottom... no problem. Your dog is not going to point out that you always burn the steak and that the grill really should be turned to the lowest setting so as to prevent this from happening in the future.

9. Similarly, if you are sharing a quiet dinner at home, dogs will not make a fuss about what part of the meal they get and what part you get.

Your dog will happily take any portion you choose to give him -- the burnt of the bacon, the clear, gelatinous parts of the chicken, the discarded shrimp veins. And if you are splitting a pack of Skittles, your dog will gladly take all the yellow ones, which no human being actually likes but which Wrigley insists on throwing in the mix anyway.

10. Dogs are naturally hyped up, and they want you to be, too.

Therefore, your dog will never, ever take the last cup of coffee without asking if you have had enough, nor will he pour himself a cup before it is finished brewing, thus completely disrupting the balance of all the remaining coffee.

11. Dogs get the value of cuddling for its own sake.

They like to snuggle up to you while you read in bed and while you polish your toenails and while you talk on the phone, and this is actually, for real -- get this -- all they want.

12. Dogs are not into fancy perfumes.

You can arrive home from an hours long mountain biking excursion, your bloody, mud-caked body reeking of vinegary sweat, and your dog will dance around wagging and licking your legs and just generally reiterating how sweet smelling and terrific you are.

13. Dogs are never too busy or too grossed out to care about your safety and comfort.

If a mouse scampers across the kitchen floor -- snap! If the trash overflows onto the kitchen floor -- instant removal. If that cat vomits or poops in the floor -- voila! Taken care of.

14. Dogs tend to prefer water to beer, and pretty much any water source will do.

The creek, a mud puddle, the toilet are all perfectly acceptable drinking sources for your dog. Therefore, your dog will rarely, if ever, down the very last bottle of Highland Brewing Cold Mountain Winter Ale you had tucked in the back of the fridge in anticipation of drinking it together on a very special occasion, such as Valentine's Day.