Wisdom Comes Suddenly

An Argument For Pets

March 11th, 2012 · 9 Comments

I did not grow up in a successful pet house.  The mean male cat, confusingly named Josie, was a short-lived experiment.  My fish got Ick.  My hamsters, my beloved Tico and Taco…turned into ridiculous rascals.  Someone should have TOLD ME sister hamsters will eventually try to kill each other. That was a bit too Shakespearean of a lesson for an 8 year old. I imagined my adult life occurring in loaded Jeep Cherokee, living in a huge, spotless ranch with a circle drive, completely pet free.

And now?  Now I drive a minivan that spews Chex Mix as I putter through town, and my 2-story, circle driveway free house is overrun with furry critters.  I STILL can’t tell the difference between Syd and Cy until I pick them up, so thank God Max is a different color.  As much as I’ve been a pet-doubter, on one very cold and unfortunate morning, when the girls arose from a fitful sleep, running down the stairs screaming, “TODAY IS THE DAY!!!  MOLLY’S BIRTHDAY PARTY IS FINALLY HERE!”, and this very morose Mommy had to inform them that Molly had the flu?  Not even a cuddly Mommy could stop the tears of disappointment.  Sensing their despair, baby Cyrus crawled into their laps, cuddling underneath a blanket, and fell asleep in their arms.  The tears stopped, the day rolled forward, and in a brief moment I got the whole “pet thing”.  A live animal who will cuddle without ceasing, listen without judgement, and forgive without consequence?  Priceless.  Kids need pets, the ultimate pal.  I get it now.  Take a moment to tell me about your furry loveys!

Tags: The Girls

9 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Mrs Sharp // Mar 11, 2012 at 9:35 pm

    Mr Harley James is our Flame Point Siamese cat..Harley loves to eat spaghetti but his all time favorite is Cheese Doritos! He knows when we aren’t feeling well and will snuggle up until “he feels ” your doing OK…

  • 2 Amie R. // Mar 12, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    We have a pet mismatch in our household akin to your childhood. Alexa LOVES her kitties, but they only tolerate her back (sometimes). Unfortunately, we discovered some tumors on our one kitty yesterday so I fear her days may be numbered. How did you help the girls when your other kitty passed? Did you tell them he was put to sleep or did you tell them he passed on his own? Although the kitty love is not reciprocal, I know that Alexa’s heart will break into a million pieces when one (and eventually both) are gone.

  • 3 Gretchen Bandoli // Mar 12, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    Our golden retriever Grace was our first “baby.” Now, as I watch Katja try to ride her, Lucia pull her ears, and the girls struggle to put necklaces and bracelets on her paws, I can almost hear here asking, “what have I done to deserve this? Wasn’t I good to you? Your loyal companion on all those runs? Your “guard dog” in Indianapolis?” But as I see her eagerly wagging her tail as the girls come at her with more torture, I am reminded why dogs are mans best friend 🙂

  • 4 The Momma // Mar 12, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    We were quite honest with the girls and told them Jack was too sick to live, and in horrible pain. They know he was put to sleep, and because he wasn’t the most social cat (so very sick), they didn’t miss him. Jack pre-dated them, so they were eager to pick out “their own kitten”, who turned out to be a full grown cat. Max has been their pal since the day they brought him home. Cats who come after kids tend to be far more social with them. Syd is our only “pre girls” cat left, and she doesn’t pay them an ounce of attention.

  • 5 The Daddee // Mar 12, 2012 at 1:54 pm

    Gretchen, The cats work for me. I feed them, give them shelter, and change their litter. Their sole responsibility is to entertain my little girls. If the cats no longer think this is a fair arrangement, they are free to seek employment elsewhere (except Sydney, she can stay).

  • 6 Lori // Mar 12, 2012 at 2:18 pm

    Oh Daddee. When we lose your Sydney, I’ll need to put you in grief counseling.

  • 7 Pam Lewis // Mar 13, 2012 at 1:48 pm

    I have named all of my pets in alphabetical order. We are currently on “H” for “Hydra”. Austin learned to walk by holding onto our dog “”Dame”. She was wonderful with him. A dog has always slept in his room, every night, on the floor right by his bed. Some nights it was the only thing that convinced him that he would be okay. No monsters would dare enter a boy’s room if there was a dog in it! When Austin was around 4 my Dad wanted to show him “Old Yeller”. I had to explain that Austin’s best friends had all been 4 legged ones. We currently have 3 dogs, “Emma”, “Girly”, & “Hydra”. They can be a handful & expensive, but they bring out a side in Austin that I love to see. He tends to show more compassion then you generally see in an 11 year old boy.

  • 8 Hands Free Mama // Mar 13, 2012 at 8:24 pm

    I totally agree with you, Lori. I just wish we didn’t have such an anti-cat guy living with us. Boo.

    I remember the cat I got as a 4 year old that I cared for and loved until I was 18. My mom said that seeing me care for Tigger made her certain that I would be a good mom some day. Boy, I loved that cat. She WAS my baby.

    I couldn’t wait until I got out of college and could have another cat. I found a slew of kittens one day in the country (better than finding gold, if you ask me). I kept the calico and named her Callie (what else?). She was highly neurotic and did not like the guy in my life (my husband before he became anti cat guy). She chose to urinate in his favorite spot on the couch every Sun. right before the Colts game started. She cried like she was being skinned alive when I left the house. Needless to say, when Callie died, that was the end of pets in our household. The girls and I now go to Petsmart and admire all the free stray cats. We play the game of “if you could pick one to take home, which would you take?” It is almost painful for me. I look into a certain cat’s eyes and I think I am suppose to rescue that one.
    It is tragic!

    I pray that in a few years the girls will be more responsible and I can convince my husband that we should have an outdoor cat, like my Tigger was. But until then, we can only dream.

    I am glad to know someone out there is rescuing these little fur babies and loving them like they won the cat lottery!

  • 9 The Momma // Mar 14, 2012 at 9:26 am


    Cats are funny. The key to getting a good one is to take Scott with you, and the one that presses against the cage and must be held by all of you is the cat for you. I’ve always wanted an orange tabby, but the plain old tiger striped have always had the best personalities. I certainly never wanted a white furry Max, but he obviously wanted to be with us. I couldn’t stand cats until I learned that trick. Greg does the litter, but the girls do all of the brushing and the food and water. You are ready!!! Make Scott read this post!