I've lived a sheltered life in that I have never actually seen a clown dog, but I do know they exist. I imagine my clown dog as faithful friend to the "tramp", or sorrowful variety of clown, as opposed to "Bubbles the Happy Clown".
While it is often said that a dog grows to resemble it's "master", I believe it is also true that dogs often compliment their human companion with traits that person is deficient in.
With this piece, I see the dog as a bemused partner to the baleful clown; Piglet to Eeyore. Two gloomy figures just don't go together well. One or the other of any good pair has to be a bit of an optimist, otherwise there is no one to push the door open in the morning to let the sun in.
Many of us involved in relationships take turns being the motivational speaker for the day, kicking our partner in the pants to smell the roses, but who wakes up beside the august clown and says, "Well, this looks like a pretty good day!"? Sometimes the painted frown is not just a one day thing. It is an every day thing, and the wearer needs another face, like that of a contented dog, a dog that finds pleasure in simple things, and with a wag of it's tail, rubs some of that joy onto those around it, if only just a bit or for only just a while.
Dogs don't do everything right. They can't type, or sew, or garden very well. They don't mow the lawn or fix the car, and many lack in their social graces, but they do some things much better than their human friends. They know when they've got a good thing, they show appreciation for life's simple pleasures, and they wake up on the right side of the bed, almost every day of the world.
26" in height;
Photo by Kendrick Moholt
Lest I get carried away on the virtues of dogs, I suppose it is appropriate to at least mention that there are dogs who are curmudgeons and cranks, and otherwise unpleasant to be around, but it is my humble opinion that dogs of poor disposition are generally the products of people of poor disposition. Angry people often make for angry dogs.
But such is our fortune, that sad people seem generally to have happy dogs, and that is a good thing. I think it helps those with a sorrowful disposition get through the day. I've often noticed that a very somber person who may seem to barely endure his fellow man, may have a vibrant and joyful relationship with his dog. I suppose it's that unconditional love that nobody does better than our canine friends.