The Dog House

by Shirelle

Hey Guys!

My name is Shirelle, and I am thrilled to be here.

I’m here to help you when you are in the proverbial doghouse. When things go wrong and you just don’t know where to turn, you can come here. I’m a good listener and a loyal friend. Oh and there’s something else about me you should probably know;  I’m also a Husky-Mix.  I mean, like, I’m a dog. Pooch, mutt, all that.

How can I help you?

Lets take a step back a bit. In addition to the work I do here at HeadsUp Dad, I am also the host of a separate website called AskShirelle.com, which offers down-to-earth advice for children, teens, and parents—advice to get you back on track when life has thrown you for a curve.

The logic behind the Dog House is pretty simple.  Think about it – when there’s friction in a household, who’s the one member of the home who still loves everyone equally, and has unconditional positive regard for each member of the family.  The family dog, right?

And also, who is the only member who can hear what’s being whispered behind closed doors?!

But you’re probably asking, while that might make sense for another website, who let this dog into here, and why? Well, we actually have a lot in common.  Dads and Dogs I mean.  Of course we love the kids in our family like crazy, and would do anything for them.  But it really goes pretty far beyond that.  In fact, I’d argue there are four commonalities we share, that really matter.

1. We are seen as The Protectors.

While mothers and siblings and friends and neighbors all may be equally protective, or more so, it’s the Dad and the Dog who people see that way.  We’re the ones most likely to scare off predators, bullies, thieves, and perhaps boyfriends, and we’re proud and happy to occupy that role.

2. At the same time, Dads and Dogs offer kids a sort of warmth very different from that of a nurturing mom.  Children love to lie on us, just to feel our strength.  Even little Chihuahuas and Dachshunds offer a deep warm vibration that is a lot like a father’s, and terribly important for a child to feel.

3. Okay, my favorite thing we share.  For the majority of kids we deal with, we are their favorite clown. They’d rather laugh at us than at anyone in the world.  And no one in the world loves being that clown as much as we do.  We live for it.  I’d go so far as to say that a very high percentage of dads and dogs, when their life passes before their eyes at the end of their time on earth, treasure most those moments of the laughter of their children.  It’s a great job, isn’t it.

4. Oh, and then there’s number four.  The not so good one (here’s where it all begins to come together).  We’re also the ones who sometimes make a mess of things and have to sleep out in the doghouse. I’m here to talk about how to be better dads, and how to help kids, and sometimes, just how to survive.  If you ever have any questions for me, just go ahead and ask. If you want to read more, feel free to wander on over to AskShirelle.com, and join my Pack there. Once there, you can ask me anything you like (no charge!).

In the meantime, I’d love any feedback you have about my work here at HeadsUp Dad.  Criticism is fine, but of course treats and ear-scratches are preferred! Oh, I should also add that I don’t work completely alone.  All my writing is done in collaboration with a human named Douglas Green, a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who works in Los Angeles.  So although my writings aren’t psychotherapy at all (just entertainment and education), he’s here to keep me from simply ranting on about squirrels and how great it is to chase the ball a three-year-old throws.

But it is just the best, isn’t it?!

Cheers,
Shirelle

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