I Sent My Dog And Cat To A Marriage Counselor To Work On Their “Relationship” And Here’s What Happened
My cat and dog have THE worst marriage I’ve ever seen. This could be because they’re not actually married… but honestly that’s just the tip of the iceburg. They’re rude to one another. They push each other’s buttons on purpose. I’m not even convinced that they like one another at all. Still, I am determined to help.
That is one pissed cat…
I sent these two to a marriage counselor (me) for an afternoon to attempt to sort out some of their deep rooted marital issues and help them better achieve wedded bliss. From the outset, I was fully aware of the problems associated with me counseling these furry lil chicas:
1. I’m their mother, which means it’s 100% unethical.
2. I’m not a licensed therapist. In fact, my degree is in theatre and has nothing to do with this.
3. They’re not married.
These things are true, yet I was inclined to give it a go. After all, they are pretty much bound together for eternity. Plus my mom is an elementary school guidance counselor, so like… I should be a natural at this, right?
Let’s meet the couple, shall we?
-Gilda, Gilly or Gil for short
–German Shepherd Collie Mix
-Had a tough start to life as a stray on the streets of Bakersfield, CA
-Adopted in January 2016
-Likes: squirrels, stealing loaves of bread off the kitchen counter, head scratches, snuggling
-Dislikes: her harness, being told not to eat Marti’s food, the Bulldog who lives across the hallway
-Marti for short
-Polydactyl Orange Tabby with Alopecia (she’s got lotsa bald spots on her bum and extra toes on her front paws)
-Was surrendered by her previous owner to Best Friend’s Animal Society
-Adopted in May of 2015
-Likes: stealing straws from your cup, playing with straws, face rubs, snuggling
-Dislikes: sudden movements, guitars, not being fed exactly on time
Here. We. Go.
We immediately ran into problems. Gilda arrived promptly for our scheduled meeting. She wiggled around my office (the living room), while Marti hid in the closet to avoid her. Eventually, though, I convinced Marti to join us.
It wasn’t like I dragged her there kicking and screaming hissing, but…
Okay, now we were cookin’!
Even though Marti wasn’t entirely comfortable with the idea of touching or even sitting within 5 feet of Gilda, I convinced her to join us by offering her a place on my lap. It was a highly unorthodox maneuver — I’ll bet it’s even illegal for a licensed therapist to do this? But I’m not a licensed therapist AND she agreed to it. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither was a perfect (wedded) union between canine and feline. Baby steps.
Now that they were both in the same room, it was go time. I attempted to start a lively discussion about how each of them feels in this holy, holy union. Gilda informed Marti that it is exhausting work being the only one working to keep the magic of their relationship alive through spontaneous gestures.
Hearing this, Marti rolled her eyes. Uh oh.
Hostile gestures like eye-rolling are never welcome in my office. I asked Marti if she had anything to say or add to Gilda’s comment, yet she still refused to participate. Instead of forcing her to speak before she was ready, I asked if she would be more comfortable sharing her feelings via writing. I asked her to make a list of changes she’d like to see Gilly make, and to my surprise, she obliged.
What was on the list?
-“Move slower, Gilda. Not so many sudden movements. It’s v scary for me as I am much tinier than u.”
-“Please let me eat my own food instead of stealing it out of my bowl. You have your own food and your own bowl.”
-“Stop being so greedy with mom and dad’s attention. Sometimes I want to hang out with them solo, ya kno?”
-“Plz plz plz don’t act like you want to eat me alive, mmmkay?”
Unfortunately, Gilda did NOT take this list well. She said she was open to constructive criticism, yet when presented with it she shut down. She regressed to juvenile middle school passive-aggressive behavior and gave her wife the silent treatment.
Some therapists would say this kind of behavior could be traced back to Gilda’s relationship with her mother. But I disagree.
Cold. As. Ice. BRRRR…
As I watched this unfold, I couldn’t help but notice that many, if not all, of this couple’s problems stemmed from one larger issue: a lack of trust. This called for the oldest counseling trick in the book: TRUST FALLS.
Listen, I know it’d be cruel to actually drop my cat onto my dog’s head. I knew from the start that I was never going to go through with it… in order for my counseling tactic to work, I only needed them to believe that I was going to drop Marti onto Gilda’s head.
As I held Marti above her wife, I felt the energy in the room shift. The office/living room was now chock full of electric intensity as adrenaline surged through their furry little bodies.
“Here we go. Ready? One… two….”
Yet, instead of “three” I shouted:
…and whisked Marti off to the safety of the coffee table.
A pic taken mere seconds after the faux trust fall. Gilda and Marti attempt to wrap their heads around the experience.
They were both stunned. Marti seemed grateful for the misdirection, but Gilly was confused as to why I aborted operation trust fall. I asked them to sit in silent contemplation for 60 seconds to gather their thoughts on the experience, all the while hoping that perhaps this high stakes experience had helped them bond in a new way.
At this point there were only a few minutes left in our session. I began to wrap things up by asking them what they’d learned from their experiences in therapy that afternoon. But before either of them could answer, my office door (err.. the front door to my apartment) swung open abruptly: Dad was home.
Gilda trotted to the door to greet her father, while Marti made a mad dash out of the room, most likely to resume hiding in the closet. Here I was thinking we had made progress, but the two still couldn’t stand to be in the same room as one another! I had failed as a marriage counselor! My mom (the real counselor) was going to be so disappointed in me 🙁
CUT TO LATER THAT NIGHT:
Most therapists do not have the luxury of living with their clients (cause that seems like it wouldn’t be allowed, right?), but I only have two clients and luckily they DO live with me. Otherwise, I would have missed this…
THE ‘BOOP’ HEARD ‘ROUND THE WORLD!!!!
Okay. I know this might look like a trivial little moment, but it was truly HUGE for this duo. Maybe they don’t always get along. (In fact, they rarely do…) But there is some definite affection there sometimes and that’s a start. Obviously my one marriage counseling session with this couple didn’t solve all their problems, but I can honestly say I don’t think they’re gonna get divorced any time soon, mostly because:
–They’re not actually married
–The state doesn’t recognize marriages between animals as binding under the law.
–These two have no human money, and I don’t think a divorce attorney would draw up papers in exchange for a rawhide (Gilly) or some straws (Marti).
Three days post counseling session and we are on our way to bliss…
Maybe I’m not the Cesar Millan of the marriage counseling community, but I AM available for hire for all of your pet marriage needs — and I will gladly accept rawhides and straws as payment.
Lin Manuel Miranda and his dog, Tobillio: “Hamilton” creator Lin Manuel has an aging mutt named, “Tobillo” who, besides being his creative muse, has also become a bit of a star on Twitter recently. (more on that later)
Lin Manuel’s dog: The story behind his name
In case you haven’t heard, the Puerto Rican Miranda’s dog is called Tobillo. There’s actually a very interesting story behind the name. Lin Manuel Miranda is of Puerto Rican decent, and “Tobillo” is the Spanish word for “ankle.” If you’re wondering why he would call his doggy such an odd name, it’s really very funny.
When he first brought the puppy home, one of the first things it did was nibble on Miranda’s future-wife’s ankle! He obviously thought that the whole thing was so hilarious that he went ahead and named the dog after the incident. Crazy, right?
Tobillo: Star of Twitter
Tobi, when we brought the new kid home:
WHAT THE F*CK IS HAPPENIIIIIIING pic.twitter.com/IDNbB2k6yc
— Lin-Manuel Miranda (@Lin_Manuel) November 10, 2015
Lin Manuel takes Tobillio to work; tweets photograph of him in front of green screen
One of the trends that we just love at the moment is taking your dog to work. After all, what could possibly be better than having your pup with you when you’ve got your nose to the grindstone? Just seeing their cute little face should be enough to brighten your day at the best of times.
One person who knows just how much joy an office dog can bring is none other than the rather wonderful Lin-Manuel Miranda. The massively talented actor, writing, and (yes!) rapper recently took his little doggy to work with him. In fact, the little pup looked seriously happy while he was hanging out in Lin’s suave-looking office.
I brought my dog Tobi to work and took her picture in front of the green screen for y’all.
Photoshop away, I’ll RT faves. pic.twitter.com/6uIXWUFEiX
— Lin-Manuel Miranda (@Lin_Manuel) February 9, 2017
As you probably already know from his shenanigans, Miranda likes to have fun now and then. So, he recently posted a picture on Twitter of the cute little Tobillo in front of a green screen. Why, you ask? Well, he wanted to set the online world a sneaky little challenge.
“I brought my dog Tobi to work and took her picture in front of the green screen for y’all,” Miranda tweeted. Yep, he was basically asking people to Photoshop his pup.
The results were utterly hilarious. It seems that many people had nothing better to do with their day than spend time editing pictures of the pup. Some of the best (edited!) photos included ones that mimicked famous posters, ones that were just weird, and ones that put the dog’s face on people’s heads! Here are some of our favorites:
Tobillo: The Phantom of the Opera!
— Lauren (@LKoranda) February 9, 2017
Now, we’re not sure if this is intentional or not, but ‘perra’ means female dog in Spanish. Either the person spelled the word wrong (oops!) or they were trying to make a funny pun in the title. We’re hoping it’s the latter! This is one of the best Photoshopped pictures we’ve seen in a long time. And, hey, why shouldn’t Tobillo take a starring role, eh?
This “Tobillo” Moana-inspired tweet:
— Micayla (@MicaylaZee) February 9, 2017
Moana was one of the biggest kids’ movies of the year in 2016. If you didn’t quite catch it, you’re sure to find this particular picture seriously confusing. Still, you have to admire the Photoshop skills that its creator has.
Of course, Miranda loved the pictures. This was exactly what he’d been asking for. What’s more, he went ahead and retweeted some of his favorites. They are so worth checking out if you have time! Also, be sure to follow Lin Manuel Miranda on Twitter to catch new photos of his dog!
Here’s some more photos of Miranda’s dog:
Tobi guards my office when I write.
Good night. pic.twitter.com/myNFKwpTsj
— Lin-Manuel Miranda (@Lin_Manuel) February 24, 2016
Puppy + half-naked supermodel = marketing genius? There are two ways to get attention when walking down the street: walking a cute dog, and wearing only your underwear.
For most of us, the latter is not GOOD attention, but when you supermodel Emily Ratajkowski, you can get away with it. Here’s the new DKNY ad, and if you look really hard (on the second or third viewing?) you’ll notice she has a dog:
Do you need another reason to love dogs?
Besides appealing to my lizard brain, I like that this ad reminds me that the dog doesn’t care. I mean, instead of a supermodel, this woman could be size 16 and 80 years old, and the dog wouldn’t judge.
Plus, I always think it’s funny that a dog is ready for a walk at any time, with no preparation or clothing needed. Everyone on the street could stop and stare, and the dog wouldn’t care. They would just keep trotting down the street, fully naked.
In fact, I’ll bet you a dollar that supermodel Emily Ratajkowski is less secure in her appearance than the dog is. The only thing that would dampen this dog’s mood on the walk is if it had to wear a cone (of shame) around its head. That’s why you have to love them!
So, what do you think? Gratuitous sexuality, or great marketing idea?