Not surprisingly, my 18month old daughter, Piper, has a cold. I say not surprisingly because as a pediatric nurse practitioner I knew that her once a week preschool program would happily team up with cold and flu season to bring us a series of upper respiratory infections. Actually, I’m surprised that it took until mid December for it to start. Now that the first one has hit, I have a toddler who cannot sleep, doesn’t want to eat and is generally an unhappy camper. Before you parents out there conjure up sweet images of a sick baby cuddled up in momma’s lap, I refer you back to the title of this blog post. Where’s the love?
Apparently, the love is crated. Piper, who loves me and generally likes to cuddle, has, during this illness, often forsaken me for the comfort offered by the dog. The last few days, I’ve sat back and watched as my little girl made her way to my bedroom and curled up with her best friend inside his crate. Sometimes, the dog looks to me as if to ask if she’s OK, other times he lets out a large relaxing breath and falls back asleep with her draped over his back. It seems that there is something soothing about curling up in a crate with a pit bull. Actually, it doesn’t have to be in a crate, as far as Piper is concerned anywhere will do as long as she has her pit bull.
As cold and flu season wears on, when you find that you or your child isn't feeling well and Tylenol isn’t doing the trick, you might want to follow Piper’s lead and look for a pit bull to cuddle. Remember, as a parent you may have to occaisionally put your foot down and demand to be included.
I look forward to a day when medical research shows the health benefits of pit bull cuddling and pediatric providers start prescribing the practice for sick kids everywhere....
The holiday season really brings out the optomist in me. Wishing you, and pit bulls everywhere, health, happiness and peace in the new year.