PODCAST SUPPLEMENT: EP 55: JOURNEY OF A DOWN DOG

by - August 21, 2018


My goal is to write a supplemental blog to each weekly Positive Cynicism podcast. So far that hasn't happened on a regular basis. Hopefully this is the start of consistency. Hopefully.



The August edition of Question Everything features an interview with my ex-colleague, Travis Yates. Travis has been on the Positive Cynicism a couple of other times. The first time was episode 13 when we discussed whether college was a necessity in today's society or if other options are more valuable. On episode 37, Travis and I discussed the legacy of Mister Rogers and how we need more people like him today. After four months, Travis returns for a more personal visit.

Travis recently authored a book detailing the efforts he and his wife went through after one of their dogs had a stroke. The book "No One Told Me My Legs Don't Work: Journey of a Down Dog"is a fascinating read. I highly recommend the book if you are an animal person. Or if you're a person who knows how to read.

I remember when Travis told me about his dog having a stroke and how he and his wife, Renea were determined to do whatever was necessary in the attempt to heal their dog.  I am a dog person. If you check out my Twitter account, my profile picture includes the coolest dog I know, Teddy. I grew up with dogs. But, when Travis told me he was preparing to put his dog through rehab, my first thought was, what a waste of time and money.  As much as I like dogs, I don't think I would have the patience to spend months rehabbing a dog without the guarantee of it actually working.  Instead of a a tale of a Down Dog, I would have the tale of putting a Dog Down.

Living in Los Angeles has given me a different perspective on pets. Here, people treat pets like kids. This probably isn't limited to just LA but I wasn't aware of the phenomenon until moving to California. I only take issue with this when people dress their pets up. Or put pets in strollers. On the flip side, I don't understand people who have pets only to keep them in a cage or chained up in the yard. If you're going to have a pet, don't treat it as an afterthought.

I'm not sure if I could handle having a pet. I can barely take care of myself. If I don't feel like going grocery shopping, I can easily go through a drive-thru or order delivery. Can't do that for a dog or even a fish. Right now I feel the same way about pets as I do about kids. They're fun to be around for a few hours and then I get to leave and parents have to deal with them.

With my attitude, what Travis and Renea went through and were determined to see through to the end no matter the outcome is extremely impressive. Knowing them as well as I do, I can confidently say they care just as much (probably a tad bit more) for their actual child. That caring extends to the rest of their family, friends and anyone else with whom they come into contact. While I may have thought rehabbing a dog was a futile choice, I would expect nothing less from the Yates' and it's one of the reasons I'm glad I can call them friends.


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