The Observer

I Hate Dogs and I Am Not a Horrible Human Being

Sarah+McLachlan+would+like+a+word.
Back to Article
Back to Article

I Hate Dogs and I Am Not a Horrible Human Being

Sarah McLachlan would like a word.

Sarah McLachlan would like a word.

Ampersand72 VIA FLICKR

Sarah McLachlan would like a word.

Ampersand72 VIA FLICKR

Ampersand72 VIA FLICKR

Sarah McLachlan would like a word.

By TATIANA GALLARDO, Contributing Writer

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






2018 is almost over, and with it will come the end of the year of the dog. Halle-freakin-lujah. These furry creatures already get enough attention without an official 365-day period of dedication. From the endless Instagram dog accounts to the bulldogs stopping traffic on the streets, they’re everywhere I turn. You will not catch me cooing every time a furry four-legged beast comes my way. Here’s the thing: I hate dogs.

Cue the inevitable cries of shock, disgust, and terror. “How can that be possible?” friends and strangers alike always ask me. “Are you even human?” they’ll ponder after watching me remain indifferent in the presence of a palm-sized pooch.

Supposedly, humanity rests in pet adoration. Those that are decidedly disinterested in four legged-friends are stigmatized outsiders. I’m tired of having to apologize for my opinions or mitigate the intensity of my feelings just to appease the puppy-crazed masses.  No, I do not like dogs, and no, I am not a cold-blooded monster.

My disdain for dogs comes from how I grew up. My family attempted to adopt a Bernese Mountain Dog when I was eight. “Attempted” is the key word. Her name was Romy and she quickly became the family chore as opposed to the family friend. She required time and energy constantly. Quite frankly, we Gallardos are simply not pet people. It’s in our genes.

Instead of adoration, I felt excessive apathy. I didn’t care for Romy at all. Hearing her aggressive howl mid-morning to be taken outside for a walk didn’t exactly motivate me to feel love and affection. Standing outside in the freezing cold every morning with a doggie bag in my hand while awaiting some fresh, warm animal poo didn’t give me a rush of excitement that an owner might feel. Quite frankly, Romy needed way too much attention, which I simply did not have enough to give. I was — and am — in a state of my life in which I would rather interact with real humans than play fetch with furry neighbors at the dog park. Romy required way too much work, and she stripped me of my independence.

After owning her for two years, I realized the undeniable: Most dogs are dirty and smelly. You can literally smell when someone owns a furry creature. Maintenance of their hygiene requires time and money that I do not have. On top of that, dogs never leave you alone. Maybe it’s my inner introvert talking, but I don’t want to come home to a dog sticking its nose in my business and begging for attention. I want peace, quiet and solitude.

The thought of having to care for a creature that can’t even hold a conversation with me is not enticing. It is a colossal waste of my money and energy. This is where I feel like I need to make a promise: I swear I am not a cold-hearted freak. I just have different priorities than dog-lovers do. I think dogs are smelly, unclean, annoying and, ultimately, too much work. I shouldn’t have to apologize for this.

Puppy bait doesn’t work on me. The number of Tinder profiles I’ve come across with the cringe-inducing “That’s my dog” bios referencing dog-owner personality shots has made me realize even more emphatically how rare I am to not be interested in swiping right.

One time on a first date (after listening to 20 minutes of stories about his little Brewster’s obedience class updates), a guy got very serious with me as he whispered, “You just can’t trust a dog hater.” I sipped my drink with a smirk and quipped, “But what if they like doggy style?” He nearly choked. I didn’t see him again.

It’s not just potential romantic prospects that don’t trust someone who doesn’t like dogs. It seems like it’s everyone. Dog disdain is met with stigmatization and shock. A quick Google search on disliking dogs leads to a downward spiral into the inner workings of online forums where people opine with zero restraints under the disguise of an internet persona. One Quora member wrote that finding out someone he knows doesn’t like dogs “is a warning signal that something is wrong with this person, and I would avoid them.”

One of the things that makes humanity so beautiful is the difference in opinions and backgrounds amongst people everywhere. Do we not believe in diversity anymore? Dog haters are the rare group that isn’t encouraged to embrace its “difference.” Instead, the entire collective is deemed appalling.

This is entirely unfair and my indignation cannot be kept quiet. It appears that we live in a society in which our personalities and distastes are warning signs. Not a fan of chocolate? You’re inhuman. Dislike music? You’re insane. Don’t want a pet? Goodbye.

These judgments and denouncements are ridiculous, especially considering we are in an age that champions inclusion and acceptance. Inclusion isn’t applied to us canine condemners. We’re just “not human.” This can’t continue because our personal preferences are exactly that: personal. Everyone has their own likes and dislikes, whether they stem from family traditions, personal experience or simply a developed feeling.

Don’t get me wrong; I get the appeal of dogs. They can be someone’s best friend. They fill an emotional void with genuine unconditional love. As companions, they’re loyal, obedient and kind. They can even help those with a medical impairment. I think that’s amazing and I respect it — from a very far, very necessary distance. This respect now needs to come from both ends. I’ll respect the woof if you respect my opinion.

33 Comments

33 Responses to “I Hate Dogs and I Am Not a Horrible Human Being”

  1. Chad on November 9th, 2018 3:12 am

    Dogs are the worst.

  2. Carmen M Smith on November 9th, 2018 7:52 am

    It’s about time someone published an article like this! Not everyone likes canines – some of us suffer from cynophobia, which is one of the top phobias around – and some people just don’t care for animals, period (like my brother). I don’t hate dogs, but I can’t say I am enthralled by them either. I don’t understand the mentality of those who claim that dogs are ‘better’ than people, and I find Dog Worship Culture an extreme circlejerk of hive minds and insanity. Dogs are just animals, and to be honest, are more irritating than endearing.

  3. Jane on November 9th, 2018 2:39 pm

    I agree 100%. I’m not a dog person. Indeed “dogs are smelly, unclean, annoying”. No thanks.

  4. Gumana Attal on November 15th, 2018 2:39 pm

    I love love love this. I’m 100% a cat person and don’t feel any kind of connection to this “puppy trend.” Finally, someone is speaking what was on the mind of 78405987643 other people in hiding!!!

    Love this!

  5. Gumana Attal on November 15th, 2018 2:44 pm

    Hey there!
    Let me just say, you finally said what was on 16274728 people’s mind!!! I’m 100% a cat person, but even if I wasn’t, I do not understand the “puppy trend”
    So I can totally relate, you are NOT alone sista!

  6. Borislava on November 20th, 2018 3:51 pm

    You are not ALONE!

  7. John on December 22nd, 2018 1:35 pm

    Bingo you nailed it. I had a person I was dating actually say to me dog people are better than regular people, as you might guess she was a dog person. Don’t want to sit on the furniture or lay in a bed where the dog has had his personal area and rear end rubbing all around. My son’s un-neutered dog Will get right in the middle of the living room when you’re watching TV and dry hump a pillow or stuffed animal with his outstretched unit in Plainview right between the people and the TV, I’m not a dog lover

  8. Anonymous on December 24th, 2018 8:16 pm

    I’m with you. To me, dogs stink even right after they’ve been bathed. I can’t stand how needy and pesty they are. Always following, underfoot, skulking around and looking for food or attention. And the BARKING. Don’t even get me started. Definitely not for me.

  9. Lily on December 24th, 2018 10:42 pm

    I love love love dogs, but I 100% respect your opinion.
    If you don’t like dogs, even if I can’t understand that, it’s ok, I would never call you inhuman or evil just because we have different opinions, sorry dog lovers have been rude to you in the past.

  10. Trisha on December 29th, 2018 6:00 pm

    I agree I’m not a dog or cat person I’m a human person. I don’t care to have these animals in my life. If that’s the case I’ll have more kids which I can raise to walk talk and pee and poop and eat and learn to cook and clean up after themselves. That’s a better deal than a dirty filthy animal that I have to constantly clean after, and feed, it’s constant work with dogs. No thank you!!

  11. Thank you on December 30th, 2018 7:54 pm

    Ugh, bless you. I am so tired of having to hide the fact that I don’t like dogs. People act like you’re inhuman, yet cat haters have zero problems voicing their disgust or even pretending to have allergies to avoid them.

    Dogs are so high maintenance, and maybe you hit the nail on the head with the introvert thing. I despise being followed around and having stinky breath shoved in my face when I get home. I think my misophonia exacerbates the problem…panting, lip smacking, whining, loud crunching and slurping. Makes me ragey just thinking about it, but unfortunately I have to dea with it as my bf has a dog

  12. Linda on January 1st, 2019 8:39 pm

    Dogs don’t even belong in the wild. They are a broken product created by humans. I hate them with a passion! And no matter what day, time or where I go there is ALWAYS people walking their stupid dogs! Seriously there is no escape from this dog invasion HELL!!!

  13. Jen on February 5th, 2019 8:58 pm

    Yes!!!! I don’t hate them nor do I want them to be mistreated. I just don’t care for them. I don’t want to be licked. I don’t want them in my bed or couch, I think it’s freaking nasty hiw people let them lick thier children. I don’t need the attention from an animal to feel worthy. I actually feel sorry for people who humanize these animals.

  14. Jen on February 9th, 2019 6:53 pm

    I owned a lab mix & absolutely hated that whining and begging for my food. Not to mention chewing and destroying my things, trying to eat my rabbits & eating rabbit poo.. Jumping on me & resting it’s heavy paws on my legs wanted to be scratched. It was like a large overgrown Rat. I did not hate dogs until I owned this one. Very annoying & needy. I eventually gave her away & got my peace & sanity back.

  15. athea marcos amir on February 10th, 2019 11:10 pm

    I hate dogs and cats, every last one of them. I would no more touch one than I’d touch a pile of vomit. But you guys who talk about keeping your hatred of dogs a secret, stop it! I let people know I can’t come to their home if they have an animal. Lately I try to stay home as much as possible and I tell people why; I don’t hide it. We’re not the freaks, they are.

  16. Roy Fielding on February 11th, 2019 1:15 pm

    The big problem with disliking dogs, in modern society, is that it is impossible to avoid them, unlike with cats, who are generally kept at home and will probably run from you if you visit their home. Dogs, because they are social creatures, are literally everywhere. People now take them to stores (even grocery stores), restaurants, church, movie theaters, and even to work. Unless you remain in your home all day and never go out, you will encounter them most days of your life, and you will likely have to interact with them on a frequent basis. And the more social your lifestyle is the more you will have to interact with them. Because of their social nature you are likely just going to have to put up with them barking and growling at you, jumping on you, and licking you even though you don’t own a dog yourself. There are 90 million of them in the US, more than at any time in history, and the US is the number one dog owning country in the world. Moreover, as the writer her describes, there is great intolerance against those of us who don’t like them. I appreciate the dog loving commenter above who actually apologized on behalf of dog owners. I wish for more understanding dog owners like that.

  17. K.A.L. on February 15th, 2019 7:56 pm

    Here is a GREAT way to shut up these people: I always say to some dummy who says to me people who are not crazy about dogs are not “as good” as dog people (whatever that means) “well hey, what do YOU do for CHILDREN? I mean we have a crisis that more children are aging out of foster care than ever before. More needy, hungry, abused, neglected children. You abuse a dog, it dies, end of story. You abuse a child, we are all in danger when they grow up. Then I launch into everything I’ve done, past or present to try to further humanity’s most vulnerable whether it is donating bone marrow or giving money, etc. Heck even just reading to under-privileged kids after school might help change a life! Then watch these single minded A-Holes stutter and back pedal. So I tell them whatever you do for “animal welfare groups” fine. Just make sure you do as much, or more, for children. Otherwise you are not as good a person as you think you are. In fact, you, are not good, period. Try it, I say it all the time, to strangers even. P.S. You can also remind them in most far eastern countries they eat domestic dog. As Jim Gaffigan says, “I love animals, fun to pet, Better to chew”!

  18. Lena on February 20th, 2019 6:39 pm

    THANK YOU for writing this! To me, it’s amazing how obsessed people are with dogs. If I had my cat in a tinder profile, talked about her 24/7, took her everywhere, constantly posted pictures of her, PLUS literally ended or threatened to end friendships/relationships over my cat, people would think I’m seriously insane. If you do all of that stuff with a dog, you’re considered completely normal. Our culture is warped. We are all different and we should constantly advocate for individuality.

  19. Apg on February 21st, 2019 7:45 am

    I’m in agreement with the article. It’s about time.

    Thank you

  20. JuJu on February 22nd, 2019 9:00 am

    I hate dogs. They constantly require special accommodation, and dog-owner always expect special treatment (warm fazzies) from others because they own the dog. Really!? Dogs are animals and they should be treated that way. I understand service dogs, military dogs, police dogs, – they play important role and being treated appropriately. But when you start referring to your dog as you baby, I can’t trust your judgement. It tells me your perception of reality is skewed and I should wonder what other areas of life your judgement is lucking. Thank you for this article.

  21. MJ on February 23rd, 2019 12:28 am

    I agree 100%. My marriage nearly ended when my husband came home one day with a “surprise “ for our oldest daughter: a puppy. I nearly packed my bags and left right then and there. This puppy turned into a dog that was aggressive ( not mistreated in our home), who barked and growled constantly, and seemed to enjoy crapping in his kennel despite being walked several times a day. He bit all of our children and was extremely unpredictable ( he was a German shepherd mix). My anxiety was through the roof. My husband knew I didn’t like dogs, yet he made this life changing decision without my input. I finally gave him the ultimatum: it’s me or the dog. He wisely chose to surrender the dog at the local shelter. Dogs are annoying, needy, smelly, and often dangerous. The rampant dog culture in the US is disgusting. These fanatics falsely equate dogs to humans, oftentimes even stating they prefer their smelly canines over human companionship. I prefer a clean house and keeping my children safe!

  22. Kent on February 23rd, 2019 1:08 am

    Dogs are a plague on our planet. Doesn’t matter where you live you can’t escape them. I live in the country to try to escape the noise but you can still hear dogs barking on any given night (and day). I am an outdoors person and spend a lot of time hiking and cycling the trails of Oregon. No matter where you go all our public recreation areas are becoming littered with these plastic bags of dog crap that are being left behind for our next generation. I even see them hanging from the trees like ornaments because people throw them from the trails and they get stuck in the fir trees here. I have been attacked numerous times while on my bicycle and the owners will never take responsibility for their dogs actions. I don’t hide my hatred for dogs, if you have a dog with you, you are NOT allowed in my house. I wish there was some kind of united opposition against these filthy creatures, I would join in a second and work to rid the planet of these annoying beasts.

  23. Jon Anderson on February 25th, 2019 10:12 pm

    Love it! So glad to see others feel the same as I do. I feel that people who aren’t completely in love with dogs have to keep their mouth shut and hide their feelings. My biggest problem with dogs are the owners. In my experience, the vast majority of dog owners could care less if their dogs bother anyone else.
    We moved into a really nice new home three years ago. Our nearest neighbor’s house is about 50 feet from us. The lady that lived their owned a very large boxer. After we found out we were really worried. It turns out, this lady was one of the extremely rare good dog owners. She would let the dog out for a few minutes, the dog would take care of business, run a few circles and go back inside. No barking, no property destruction or anything! I thought wow, ok maybe not all dogs are bad!
    We had about one year of quiet no barking when one day to our dismay, a for sale sign was in our neighbors yard. Dammit!!
    One day the new neighbors start moving in, with a large yellow lab in tow. Fast forward two years and our new neighbors have six total dogs. These neighbors epitomize the typical American dog owner. They don’t care what the dogs do as long as they don’t bother them. One dog runs freely through the neighborhood, leaving huge piles of feces in my yard along with even larger craters he decided to dig. They have another dog they literally tie in front of their front door who barks hours on end. Yet another little dog will run over onto my front step and bark at my door!!!
    The weird thing is, their house has a fenced in back yard. Do they put the dogs in the back yard? Hell no! They let the dogs run free while the humans go into the back yard!!
    Long story short, after only three years of living in our new awesome home, we are looking at moving. This time, we will move to a house in the country as far as possible from terrible people and their annoying dogs. I hope someday soon, this infatuation with all things canine will pass.

  24. David on February 26th, 2019 4:25 pm

    Dogs are bad but dog owners are worse. I tried to go a quiet walk today along the beach but the walk was ruined by horrible little rat like dogs approaching me aggressively and barking which set off my tinnitus. Needless to say I got the usual “Oh they won’t hurt you” from their anti-social owners who must know that their dog off lead will behave like this. Too late, they already had hurt me by triggering my ears. This interruption to my quest for a quiet walk happened not once but twice in the space of five minutes. And this despite my efforts to keep out of their way. Dog owners appear to think they have a God given right to be a nuisance to other people. I think it is important to make your displeasure very clear to the dog owner if you think it is safe to do so. If people do this more often they might just get the message.

    Have you noticed to that most dog owners are no longer content with owning one noisy, aggressive hound? Most of them in my part of the world have two or three. Going a walk these days involves trying to avoid the dog packs. What gives owners the right to spoil life for other people? Given how much noise, dirt and aggression dogs cause they should really be taxed just as we tax other pollutants such as motor vehicles. There should be some compensation to society for the menace dog owners cause. Of course there are exceptions. Some owners are responsible and some dogs are quiet and polite. Alas, this is becoming rarer. The smaller dogs seem to be the worse.. Unfortunately the dog lobby is so powerful that it will be difficult to change things or educate idiot owners the way we educated people who drink and drive. Oh, and these stupid twenty foot leads that owners use nowadays mean the beasts are out of control even on a lead. I am so sick of it but it is good to know I’m not alone. Thanks for raising the issue. What we need is an anti-dog society. I’m going to carry some biscuits with me in future as nasty dogs are also greedy and throwing a biscuit in their direction can distract them. Shouldn’t be necessary but it is.

  25. Phil Bridges on March 3rd, 2019 12:05 pm

    And dogs are also terrific at causing neighbors to fight. Just try telling your pooch-loving neighbor that his dog’s incessant barking is becoming a nuisance. Might as well forget about any future neighborhood barbecues. I tried putting up a sound detector that emits a high-pitched frequency only dogs can hear when it detects barking – in my yard – and they came over and ripped it off my tree. Man’s best friend my keister!

  26. Liz Ishma on March 7th, 2019 12:58 am

    I couldn’t fucking agree more! I just got in an online fight on a baby website over this exact thing. My question was “How to persuade my husband to put his dog outside”. I have bad allergies and can’t take the medication I use before getting pregnant. It might cause birth defects.
    To my surprise everyone….and I mean Everyone jumped to the dogs defense instead of mine. Said I should take benadryl and that I was insensitive.
    Apparently to dog lovers their animals are more important than ppl. Im truly disgusted with humaity and the way I was treated on there. Like the dog had more right than me and my unborn child.

  27. BooBooPants on March 8th, 2019 12:10 pm

    Smelly, loud, inconsiderate…. and that’s just the owners! Dogs are useless animals. I hate them and am so glad I’m not alone.

  28. Don't like Dogs on March 11th, 2019 3:54 pm

    Dogs are animals, period. They’re dirty and carry lots of germs. There’s a reason why they stink

  29. Lili on March 15th, 2019 12:50 am

    I wanted to scream to the world how much I hated dogs especially living with dogs, my husband adopted no one but two dogs without my opinion. I have never live with any type of animals, till now and believe me is the worst experience I have, they are gross, smelly, disgusting, disrespectful, destructives evil beast, they Cause so much damage, they are useless, every time we leave are home we come back to poop, my house feels dirty. I ratter be in prison partner my English not my first language. My husband said you’re not normal Americans we love are dogs, I tell him that’s a cult to the point his is more attached to those dogs than his kids.

  30. Mariana Bell on March 18th, 2019 8:27 am

    I like dogs but I do not like physical contact with them (same with birds, fish, the Queen of England). The so called dog-lovers are nothing but. In France (where I live) they call their dogs “their best friends” as if you would normally castrate your friends and drag them around on a piece of rope to defecate and urinate in public places. The dog is a libidinous pack animal, if he does not have a dog bum handy to lick he will lick your face, thence the conclusion that “my dog loves me”. Again, dog-ownership does not give some sort of evidence that you love nature or animals, on the contrary, dogs pollute nature, they do not normally exist in nature, they are produced in horrific puppy farms to satisfy the existential boredom or self-gratification of humans who do not like reading books or like to have control over some living thing or just want a toy or they follow some celebrity. It’s a symptom of decadence, of isolation, of mindless consumerism, emotional poverty, that sort of thing.

  31. Craig on March 18th, 2019 9:31 am

    Pet (especially dog) Free Pride!
    (I just laugh at the idea of a parade.)

  32. Joshua on March 22nd, 2019 9:13 am

    I’m so glad more people are starting to raise their brow at this toxic mutt worshipping trend that seems to have just exploded out of nowhere. :/

    (This rant of mine isn’t aimed at responsible and actually likeable dog owners. I’m just really fed up with all of these bad dogs and their bad owners!)

    I. Do. Not. Like. Dogs…. Reason is, 90% of dogs you have running around nowadays have the manners of a repulsive, uncivilized, untamed goblin! And the same damn thing can, unfortunately, be said about a lot of their equally as uncivilized owners.. Oh, and did I mention that most dogs are unclean, greasy, and stinky? A lot of them seem to have that dirty pooch smell, even AFTER being bathed! Ew. I guess dog perfume could MAYBE help with that???

    I don’t care if people like them, I don’t care if people have them, just as long as they don’t develop a creepy insane obsession with them and try to force me into liking their freaking dog. You like your dog? Cool, but I don’t… so PLEASE respect that and keep it AWAY from me!

    My nasty jabs are really mainly being directed at snobby untrained dogs and their irresponsible dog owners that just refuse to see the problem and want to continue acting like inconsiderate pricks. (If you’re one of these unlikeable dog owners and you’re on here to whine about or make fun of us for not liking dogs, F you, you’re part of the problem.. and so is your dang dog! I really suggest that you keep your repulsive furry four legged pet cockroach the F away from me and everyone else!)

    Sorry for the long comment! Sure did feel great to get all of this off of my chest. 🙂

    NOTE: I do not wish to harm dogs (unless provoked, obviously), I just want them all to respectfully stay the HELL away from me!

  33. BK on March 22nd, 2019 9:14 am

    I’m a dog owner and I agree 100% with everything you said. When I meet someone who feels the way you do about dogs, I don’t questions their moral fiber or any of that nonsense. I accept them for who they are and keep it moving. I look at my dog for what he is: an animal, a pet. He’s not my furbaby, my furkid, or any of that nonsense. I’ve been attacked by other dog people because of the following: feeding him dog food instead of cooking for him, not letting him sleep in my bed, putting him away when we have guests, not trying to take him every single place I go, etc. I also have no issue with people who have to rehome a dog because of certain circumstances, whereas dog people will call you the spawn of Satan for doing this. Don’t ever be ashamed to make your feelings known. This dog owner will always respect them.

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




The Student Voice of Fordham Lincoln Center
I Hate Dogs and I Am Not a Horrible Human Being