What goes through an individual, or family’s, mind when they acquire a pet? After the 2010 Christmas season, I truly begin to ponder that question. I sometimes say mean things jokingly but would never do some of the things I have see or heard about. When I met my second wife and she moved in with me, I used to laughingly joke about putting the cats in the garbage disposal. I would never do such a thing because deep down I do love animals.
I acquired a stray red nose pit bull mix one late rainy evening coming home from work. As I exited my truck and began to walk up to the house this huge, extremely muscular pit bull come charging me from the side of the house. The dog was beige and it’s ears were cut off at the head. Later I was informed that this was for fighting purposes. As I stand there in the rain not moving for a few minutes, almost ready to wet my pants, I decided to let the dog smell my hand. When I moved my hand towards the dogs nose, the dogs tail went down between her legs, she lowered herself and started shaking. I took the dog inside the house and dried her off and adopter her as my pet. We called her Thumper because of her tail thumping everything in the house when she was happy. The tail even knocked my mother down a time or two. Thumper was the best dog ever. Thumper protected the family as well as being the most loving animal. She developed aggressive cancer in her hips and hind legs that couldn’t be operated on and regrettably we had to put her to sleep after about 14 years of her joining the family.
My wife and I had a task where we had to go to the City Animal Shelter a week prior to Christmas 2010. When we entered there were so many animals in the cages that I was a saddened. A small dog with it’s puppies were in a cage and these animals didn’t appear to be abused or homeless. They were in good shape. Upon talking to the cold and distant animal control shelter manager, we asked him why it was so crowded. He stated “It is always this crowded around Christmas. People bring their animals in because the get new cars, furniture or carpeting for Christmas and they don’t want the animals soiling their new items.” The guy goes on to tell us about a woman who brought her cats to the shelter because they didn’t match the color of her new furniture. We were appalled when we heard this.
I realize that the pets we have are “just animals” but they are now our responsibility. In my opinion they aren’t expendable and we shouldn’t be able to get rid of them because they don’t match the color of our new sofa. I think acquiring a pet should be like adopting or having a baby. The decision cannot be made lightly. I also believe once you have adopted your new pet, you are responsible for taking care of it from then on.
We have been told by our daughter that we have an “Unhealthy Attachment” to our animals. We do love our cat Dirtyface and dog Leelu. Dirtyface, as seen in the picture above, came to live with us when my current wife came to move in with me. Leelu is a whole different story. My mother before her death let us have her toy Chihuahua, Pixy, for a few months to stay with us. The dog was so small and cute that it slept between us and we spoiled it with good food and filtered water and carried it around all of the time. My mother, living alone, realized the mistake she had made giving us such a lovable doggy, that she reluctantly asked for us to bring the dog back. My mother felt bad about asking for the dog back, but we were OK.
My wife at times would tell me about missing pixy and how she liked having a small lovable dog. This bounced around in my mind a lot of the time, and one day while getting the mail, there were several cats eating from a pile of cat food left by a lady who goes around the city feeding cats. Someone had abandoned the dog with her chewy on our street. In the midst of all of those cats, I see a little dog with “no tail” pop her head up from the crowd of cats. My wife describes Leelu’s backside as a hamsters butt. The little dog left the cats walking down the street. I called for the dog and it puffed it’s little chest out, let out a little growl and darted down the street. I told my wife about this, and three days later my wife says to me “Do you mean this ugly little dog out by the car tire?” When I walked out side the next door neighbor said to me “Your little doggy ran into your back yard.” Not correcting her I went running into the back yard where I found the dog cowering behind a gate leaning against a fence.
Leelu now has a home with loving . . . . . parents I guess you could say. Momma bought her a pink dog carrier with a matching stroller. We do love our animals and have never thought of giving them away because they will destroy new furniture, or that they don’t match the color of the furniture or a particular room. We sometimes wish we had a farm or large property where we could rescue some of these animals. Again we realize that this may be too much responsibility for us and to concentrate on our animals at home.
Please remember to take care of your animals and love them like they love you.