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Who Really Is Man’s Best Friend?

by Barry KuKes
For decades, maybe even centuries, dogs have been cited as man’s best friend, but is this fact or fiction? What if a man does not enjoy the company of a dog; then who is man’s best friend? In order to ascertain who the best friend is, first, we need to analyze the prerequisites that define a best friend. What are the qualifications?

If I were to set the standards for a best friend, first, they would need to be loyal. They would need to stand by my side through thick and thin, in the good times and the bad, on sunny days, and during a storm. Well, that requirement just eliminated one of my dogs as my best friend because as soon as he hears thunder, he leaves my side and hides under the bed. Okay, so maybe a best friend doesn’t need to stay by your side if they feel threatened by the elements—exception number one.

In addition to loyalty, a best friend should be happy to see you. There were no exceptions to note here because both my dogs greet me at the door smiling and wagging their tails so fast and in circles, if they were to catch a good breeze, they might rise into the sky. Also, unlike my lovely wife’s annoyance level that increases in relation to the amount of time I am late, my dogs’ joy and happiness levels increase as well. The longer I am gone, the happier my dogs are to see me.

A best friend should also be a trusted confidant. Someone you can tell your most guarded secrets to and know they will never betray you. I tell my dogs everything, and they never say a word.

A best friend should defend you even if they are not aware of the situation or circumstances you are facing. If you ask them for help, they should jump at the chance without hesitation. My dogs come to my defense even when I do not ask. They are either fearless, or they just want a cookie.
A best friend is content to sleep at your feet and let you rub their tummy. Once again, both my dogs are happy to oblige with this task. My lovely wife—not so much.

Finally, a best friend will never forget you no matter how long you are away. To this day, I still think about and miss one of my best friends, Lucky, who passed away over thirty years ago. I am sure he still thinks of me as well. It was nice of him to play a part in connecting me with all the dogs and one cat since so I would always have a best friend or two by my side. Thanks, Lucky; miss you, buddy.

I guess dog really is man’s best friend. Well, at least this man’s. What about you? Do you have a furry best friend? If you do, e-mail me their picture, and I will post it on our Facebook page.

Please e-mail me at or and post your images yourself. If you do not have a furry best friend, maybe it’s time you did. Life is better with a set of paws by your side.

Remember, adopt, don’t shop.

Barry KuKes is the Community Outreach Director for the Halifax Humane Society. You can reach Barry at 386.274.4703, ext. 320, or