“Once you have had a wonderful dog, a life without one, is a life diminished.” ― Dean Koontz
Maeve has a ... complicated relationship with dogs. She thinks she really loves them, until she is in the same room with a dog, and then she's worried it will eat her.
This is even true of dogs she has known nearly all her life. Her grandparents' dogs, Sadie and Junior, have been coming over to visit us for nearly two years now, which is basically as far back as Maeve can remember, and yet she's pretty sure they would eat her if left unattended.
I guess that's fairly normal for a kiddo who didn't grow up around dogs. She's much less distressed about cats, probably because a cat will almost never hang around her for more than a minute, but possibly also because we had a cat until she was 5 months old. At any rate, even though she has a practically hyperactive love for imaginary dogs, the real ones take some getting used to.
However, after being around her grandparents' dogs for a few hours, she is soon keen to walk them. I got to watch her at this activity over the weekend, and it's kind of fun. She does a pretty good job paying attention to the dog and what it's doing, and of course the dogs are pros at staying on the sidewalk and marking their territory every block or so. Maeve's biggest challenge was stopping to let the dogs do their thing; when she's walking towards a playground, the girl absolutely does not want to stop.
We do hope to get a dog someday, hopefully when Maeve is in kindergarten or so. I always watch her around other people's dogs to get a sense of, is she ready for this yet? What will we need to work on? And if we got her a dog right now, I think the biggest thing, outside of trying to get through her head once and for all that dogs do not ever eat people, would be making sure she doesn't try to boss the dog around every second of the day. But as the man in the quote says, I have had very good dogs in my past, so now my life doesn't feel quite right without one, so I know it will happen.