by Monica Heisey

1. Forget all those lists you made of “Things to do before you're 30.” Remember that at 30 you will also be 4.2 years old. Remember that you ate those lists and pooped them out in the street.

2. Stay confident! When asked “Who's a good boy,” don't be shy. Know that it's you. You’s a good boy. This is especially important for female dogs, who are 45% less likely to consider themselves a “good dog” than their male counterparts.

3. Bark freely, bark often. As Henry David Thoreau once said, “Most dog lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.”

4. Get outside. How many minutes a day do you spend barking at the television, mistaking gunfire or thunder sounds for a threat while you scooch along the carpet scratching your butt? Exactly. Getting connected to nature is an important part of anyone's happiness, whether you're a dog or a small, shit version of a dog (cat). There's a great big world out there, full of things to scratch your butt on. Discover it.

5. If someone tries to put a sweater on you, bite their head off. Clothes are for humans and sellouts like Wishbone.

6. Recall the words of the great Walt Whitman, in his famous poem about sitting under the kitchen table staring blankly ahead at nothing: “I exist as I am, and that is enough.” Drool while thinking about this to show passersby that it's really getting to you.

7. As the wall decal in my grandmother's kitchen says, “Live, Laugh, Lick your own butthole.”

8. This is a move I call “Dog Fosse.” Every morning when you wake up, look at yourself in the mirror and say: “SHOWTIME.” During this exercise it is important to remember that the thing you are looking at is your own reflection, and not a phantom intruder dog that is invading your home. Remain calm and repeat this phrase at yourself until it's time to fart near your owner til they wake up.

9. Remember: Bitches in heat be cray.

10. Dog heaven is a myth designed to stop you from living in the now. What are you waiting for? Pee on that tree. Pee on that rug. Just start peeing and don’t stop til every surface of this entire, messed up town reeks of your presence. Let the world know, I am dog. I was here.

Monica Heisey is a writer and comedian whose work has appeared in The Guardian, VICE, Playboy, The Hairpin, and many other web and print publications. She is the author of a humour collection called I Can't Believe It's Not Better.