It is one of the lesser-known joys of the season: dressing your pet in festive holiday garb. Some of us incorporate these images as holiday cards. This year, I entered our dog, Rowdy, in a "12 Pets of Christmas" contest sponsored by a local newspaper.
The top 12 vote-getters have their photo and a little bio published in next week's edition. I think a photography studio gift certificate is also part of the prize. Winners are tabulated via online voting and mail-in votes (you can only vote once).
I don't know about you, but I did some campaigning for my dog, mainly through Facebook. He's a retired racing greyhound we adopted more than a year ago from a wonderful rescue organization called Greyhounds Only (GO). Some GO members and our friends stepped up to vote, and helped Rowdy rack up some respectable numbers. The voting is over now (although you can view the contestants at www.buglenewspapers.com/12pets/). When the totals were up, you could clearly see that several dogs were being very heavily campaigned for.
And I started getting anxious - over what is, essentially, a popularity contest. I relaxed when I realized that Rowdy is utterly unaware of this contest. His concerns are much simpler. He's perfectly content to lay on his mat, sleep 14 hours a day, sprint for a few minutes in the backyard, and eat his food. About his favorite thing in the world is getting petted and neck-scritched. He gets plenty of both in our house.
He is content. He is warm, fed and loved. And he has a forever home with us -- would that all retired greyhounds (and all pets needing a home) had one.