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Why Every Girl Needs a Dog


By Maggie

Have you seen the flood of campaigns designed, supposedly, to help young girls feel better about themselves? There’s the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty. There’s the fashion world’s inclusion of plus-sized models in London’s runway shows. Then there’s Tyra’s call for plus-sized teens to compete in a modeling competition. And so on.

While these campaigns have their hearts in the right place, in my opinion, they fall so short that they are accomplishing the opposite of their intention. They’re not saying, “Every single girl is equally beautiful.” They’re saying, “Look! We’re flaunting plus-sized models in this one single runway show for plus-sized women! If you’re a plus-sized teen you can compete in a modeling contest, but only against other plus-sized teens! Check out our makeup ad that includes girls with asymmetrical features! We’re calling it ‘real beauty’ because they’re not as pretty as models!”

I don’t want to open up a whole battle of the sexes, but the truth is: Girls have it rough.

And all these campaigns? They’re not helping. In fact, I think they’re probably hurting more than they intend.

My solution to the self- and body-image problem among young girls?

Get a dog!



Despite the fact that I woke up with crazy hair and undereye circles this morning, Emmett gave me lots and lots of wake-up kisses.

Despite the fact that I can not carry a tune and have absolutely no rhythm, Lucas wags furiously as I sing and dance around the house.

Despite the fact that I left the house wearing one black sock and one navy sock, Cooper still had a blast on our walk, totally oblivious to my faux pas. He was just happy to be out walking with me.

They love me equally whether I have makeup on or not, whether I’m wearing a dress or sweat pants, whether I’m happy or sad. And I’m in my 30s, so I’d like to think I’m happier in my own skin than I was in my teens!

I know this is wildly simplistic. Not every family has the time or money to invest in a pet. But at the same time… why not?

Who better than a kissing pup to make a girl feel special when her best friend, inexplicably, refuses to sit with her in the cafeteria? Or greet her with a wagging tail when she gets cut from the volleyball team? Or the popular girls make fun of her jeans?

Instead of these campaigns that say, “We’ll acknowledge you because of your flaws!” a dog simply says, “I love you only because you’re you!”

And that is why I think every girl needs a dog!