Doggie Style: Honoring Koa and Qaisuke’s Individual Preferences

It took me almost a decade to finally be willing to hear that Koa and Qaisuke have different styles. My yin and yang dogs have literal, opposing style preferences. If you’re really listening, you’ll find that dogs care very much about what we thought they didn’t.

Qaisuke doesn’t like the color red. Indeed, dogs do see color. They don’t see color in necessarily the same way that humans do, but they do see a more limited spectrum of colors, including red. Dogs are not at all less capable visually in the way that human ego has tried to convince the world of our species’ superiority. While humans can see more colors, consider the fact that dogs’ night vision is several times more powerful than ours.

Koa is ultimately a nudist at heart, but like people, to be a functioning member of society he knows he can’t be naked all the time. He has owned pretty much every single harness that has ever been on the market and hated most of them (all synthetic nylon). At one point there was a poorly designed hemp one thrown into the mix. The sharp metal buckle was right where he’d lay on it.

The one harness Koa doesn’t mind is the veg-tanned leather Buddy Belt. He likes natural fibers against his skin. Natural leather, a.k.a. animal skin is the closest thing to his actual skin. He’s a strapping guy. He doesn’t mind the extra weight. He appreciates the extra loving energetic infusion his Buddy Belt gets when I apply linseed oil to it to keep it soft and pliable.

If Koa were human, he’d wear tailored leather jackets, Frye boots and cotton. I asked him once if he wanted the matching leather Buddy Belt collar and he was like, “Well, it would probably look better than nylon.”

Qaisuke is the opposite. She is not a staunch nudist. She’s more like hippie meets Boulder-technical-gear-head. The garment must be well fitting, streamlined and designed to last for hours in inclement weather, unlike 99% of the current dog wear market. She likes pink but beyond that has androgynous preferences. Dress her in ruffles and bows and she will make a point to tell you she’s wearing your clothes, not hers. She prefers synthetics because they are lightweight. She doesn’t appear as particular as Koa but that might be because there’s a lot more products available for small dogs than big dogs, kind of like there’s a lot more on the market for women than men. Qaisuke’s winter harness is a windproof MyCurli step-in; breathable synthetic air mesh on the inside, windproof, water and dirt repellent on the outside (good for low riders). If she were human, she’d shop at Patagonia and North Face.

Ask Qaisuke about her collar and tags and she’ll tell you that she’s proud of her tags. She’s proud of her life– the pampering of a pet with the freedom of a stray.

I asked Koa if he had any other requests and he was like, “I want other dogs to see me with you.” Typical guy?

Show Qaisuke HER Buddy Belt and she’s like “… ” Show Qaisuke one of her cute and colorful Puppia harnesses and she kisses me on the legs and dances joyfully. Show Koa one of his air mesh Hip Doggie harnesses and he runs away and sulks when I make him put it on. Show him his Buddy Belt and he sulks while I put it on him but doesn’t run away.

After almost a decade, I am finally letting Koa and Qaisuke wear what they want.



Source by Norell Leung

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