The Case for Dog Parents

I do not have children. It is highly unlikely that I will ever have kids. I’m fully aware of my age and while I know Janet Jackson had a kid at 50, I cannot compare my situation down there with hers, which was surely developed by the heavens and funded by million-dollar technology. Who knows, Sweet Baby Jesus may decide until I lose these last 20 pounds to impregnate me with my new boyfriend’s baby, thus ruining my chances of snapping back ever again.

And though I don’t have kids of my own, I get it now. I understand why my mom is so overprotective of me, even as a full-grown adult. Her long-distance daily inquiries about my hair, health, and car (in that order) make complete sense. I never understood how someone could be so obsessed over what another human being does. Thinking about them day and night, when they’re happy or sad, even when miles away. But then I thought I inadvertently killed my dog niece the other day and I became fully aware of what it’s like to be a parent.

I would like to say that Loca ingested the tater tots by accident. They fell on the floor as I knocked over my plate. That I dropped them whilst on the way to the trash receptacle. But no, I voluntarily gave her nearly a dozen fried potato nuggets because I couldn’t finish them myself. Thought I was being nice to her. The real problem with this logic was why I was full in the first place. Had I eaten too many tots? Let’s be real- you can never have too many. No, I emptied my plate into her dish because the tots I had made my stomach hurt. I don’t know if it was because I baked them too hard or if there was an overwhelming grease factor, but my stomach decided to constrict in pain after shoveling them in my mouth during dinner. So I stopped. And then my bright idea was to give them to the dog, who would SURELY not have the same physical reaction.

When there’s a canine in the household, about 56% of your time is spent asking Google if your furry friend can eat whatever crap you’re eating. As this cute little monster sits inches away from your face as you eat Red Lobster takeout, you often find yourself going “Ok Google, can dogs eat Cheddar Bay Biscuits?” Because the last thing you want to do is give them grapes and they explode. Unfortunately, I did not check Rihanna’s internet before I gave homegirl the tots. As I sat on the couch rubbing my tummy, I instantly regretted eating them. I look over to my left and Loca is very quiet and still. Although she likes to lounge, I thought it was odd that she was so quiet. Then I thought, “could her tummy hurt, too?” Slowly, panic started to creep into my head. I scrambled for my phone, and checked quickly on whether Loca shouldn’t be eating the food of a middle schooler. The results that came back started with “No” in bold, which I thought was little dramatic. It went on to say:

  • They are high in salt content
  • A lot of fat is contained in tater tots
  • They are a variety of other ingredients in tater tots that are bad for your dogs health

It is best for you to avoid tater tots in your dogs health at all costs as it could lead to very serious health concerns for your dog including death if they eat too many.

I HAVE JUST COMMITTED PRE-MEDITATED MURDER ON A DOG (and slowly sending myself to an early grave). My heart began to palpitate as my thoughts started to race. I was scared to look over again at Loca, and when I did, she seemed eerily more quiet than she had ever been in her four years on this Earth. I felt I was looking into the soul of a sad baby, as she seemed to barely have enough strength to lift her head up. It was too late. Like a child who ate a marble, I had to wait until it passed. And so began one of the longest nights of my life, hoping my dog niece wouldn’t die an Ore-Ida death.

I continued to watch her closely as she sprawled out on the couch. Not moving much, I was in pure agony thinking of all the grease and calories in her little dog belly. She then leapt off the couch and started to feverishly drink water every 10 minutes, as if she was parched. Dear Lord, I just put her into a diabetic shock with 12 tater tots. Her mother is never going to leave her with me ever again. I can’t let her know I gave her the tots. If this goes south, I’ll tell her through tears that Loca lurched at me, knocked my dinner out of my hand, and devoured the potatoes in seconds. As I ran my speech through my head, Loca starts to let out oil-laden flatulence, which smelled completely like a tot in gaseous form. The smell was awful, but like a momma happy that her baby finally pooped, I saw this is a sign that the potatoes were desperately trying to leave her body. Maybe she wouldn’t perish after all.

As night fell, I was afraid to go to sleep. What if Loca never woke up? Why didn’t I just throw the tots away?! I decided to let her sleep in my bed so I could keep an eye on her. Unfortunately, I went all newborn momma and put my hand on her stomach every few minutes to see if she was breathing. And yes, I even put my finger under her little pug nose. The few seconds she took to take a breath was pure agony. I think I finally passed out after several hours, only to wake up with her an inch away from my face with her hot breath, like a toddler on a Saturday morning, asking for cereal. This fool was just fine. Damn kids.


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