Yes, I call myself Jake’s Mom…but honestly what else would I call myself? Jake’s Owner, Jake’s Caregiver, Jake’s Person…..none of those seem appropriate for the relationship I’ve built with my dog.
Technically, I’m Jake’s Adoptive Mom since I didn’t give birth to him. I have two nieces that were adopted by my sister and brother-in-law. That doesn’t make them any less family, so shouldn’t the same reasoning apply to Jake?
I knew early on that Jake was different from other dogs. We were in tune from the beginning, he totally got me! After 10 years of parenting Jake, he has never, willingly, left my side and has shown me unconditional love every day. He doesn’t complain when it’s time for bed, always eats his dinner and never argues with me about doing his homework. What else could a Dog Mom ask for?
To some the term Dog Mom might sound a bit pathetic and desperate, but for me it’s more about the bond I have with Jake. I don’t pretend to know what it’s like to have maternal love for a child, so comparing the two is useless. I do know that I feel a need to keep Jake safe, well cared for and as healthy as possible.
It was Jake that got me out of the rat-race of working in professional sports. It was Jake that befriended the numerous foster children that have come through the doors of our home in one capacity or another and now it is Jake that keeps me working in the pet industry.
Three years ago Jake was diagnosed with Anal Gland Carcinoma Cancer and I was devastated. I didn’t know what to do first, so I did research, talked to multiple veterinarians and finally decided surgery was the way to go. Is that going too far? I don’t think so. You’d do it for any other family member. A year later Jake’s cancer was back. Again, I had to ask myself what I was willing to do to keep him healthy for as long as possible without compromising the quality of his life. Chemotherapy was the option I chose this time. That is a topic for another blog post so stay tuned. Now, after 3 years, thousands of dollars, 10+ different treatments, multiple food changes, adding supplements to his diet and doing cold laser therapy, Jake is still living successfully with cancer. Would someone that didn’t call themselves a Dog Mom have gone to the extremes I have to ensure his quality of life? Maybe, but as his Dog Mom, I didn’t give it a second thought.
People without dogs might call me crazy and some with dogs think I might be a little over the top. My “little boy in a dog suit” has been a friend, companion and the one constant in my ever changing life over the past 10 years. So yes, I am proud to call myself Jake’s Mom.