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DEAR FRANKIE

Unrequited love

BY GENEVA WOODRUFF

Dear Frankie,

Harriet is a cocker spaniel and my best friend. We have been meeting up every day at the park for years. On the days I arrive before she does, I often chat with Jeffrey, who is a beagle. Recently, I was told Jeffrey had a crush on me. At first, I didn't give it much thought. Then I realized that Jeffrey was always at the gate waiting to greet me as soon as our car pulled into the parking lot. I think Jeffrey’s mom and my mom haven't helped the situation by saying what an adorable couple we are and what a shame it was that we were fixed. Yesterday, they were talking about Jeff and me having playdates on the weekends. I like Jeffrey well enough for a bit of chit-chat, but I have no interest in our relationship going any further. How can I nip this situation in the bud and tell him how I feel without hurting his feelings?

Cordially,

Celeste

Dear Celeste,

You are getting many pushbacks from all sides. Jeffrey wants a girlfriend, and your mom and Jeffrey’s mom want a happily ever after and granddogs.

Perhaps Harriet could speak to Jeffrey and tell him what's what. If she feels uncomfortable speaking to him directly, she might talk to one of his pals and suggest he pass the message on to Jeffrey. From what you tell me, Jeffrey has a lot to offer as a boyfriend. He can carry on a conversation, has a purebred pedigree, and comes from a good family. Many parents would kill to have him as a dog-in-law. You might discretely ask around the park to see if anyone has her eye on him. I would be surprised if there weren’t several of the ladies that would be thrilled to date him. Jeffrey may be so focused on you, Celeste, that he may not realize he is a good catch. All it might take to divert his attention from you is to have someone say to him: "Jeff, Penny the poodle or Ginger the whippet thinks you are adorable. She would love to know you better." If Jeffrey is still crestfallen when he learns that you are a no-go, at the very least, he will know there are lots of canines in the sea.

Best,

Frankie