Okay guys – today, let’s take a look at your pets & you!
If you are an animal lover (like I am) you will most likely actually have pets (if life circumstances allow) and quite a few of you will refer to them as their furry kids :-). If animals aren’t really your thing then, needless to say, you probably don’t have pets and at the very least, that last comment of mine made you raise your eyebrows. Furry kids. OMG. 🙂
You may be a parent more or less forced into having a pet because yeah, your kids wanted a dog, a cat or a cobra (like our son…); you may be allergic to cat/dog/animal hair and either hate that you are (because you really want a pet) or love that you are ( because you actually don’t like pets and that gives you the perfect excuse not to have one). Or you may genuinely care for or not care for animals. You are all welcome to read today’s post of course but be warned – I am a passionate mom to my furry kids ;-).
Adopt, Don’t Shop
I am a firm believer in the concept of “adopt, don’t shop”. If you are a regular on this site you know, by now, that we live in an old farmhouse with lots of space in the countryside. My wife and I both love animals. All our babies are from the shelter / animal rescue. Look – I don’t judge if you go to a breeder and pay a few hundred or even a few thousand dollars for a specific breed; that’s entirely your business. I don’t judge it – I just don’t get it.
I know people have a multitude of arguments for it – that they have kids and want to know exactly what to expect, that they connect best with a certain breed, that they want to be able to predict character and so on and so forth. I personally believe that that is all a load of crapola. We have seen in the recent years that, for example, specific family dog breeds have obviously been bred to a point where its suddenly exactly those supposedly reliable family dogs that develop uncalled for, unmotivated aggression. We are all shocked when we read articles about, i.e., a Golden Retriever or Labrador Retriever having bitten a child. But then, miraculously, we forget – and when Xmas comes around and the kids want a pup, we start googling (“dogs suited for families”, “child friendly dogs” etc), then look for breeders and voila – a few weeks later and a thousand dollars shorter, we are the proud owners of a pure bred puppy. Those articles we read be damned!
My point is – you can never know what to expect or what character/personality your dog will develop to have, just because its pure bred or a mix or a mongrel. I believe we know our dog by looking at him/her, studying his/her behavior on its own, with humans, with other dogs, with cats, with our kids. If you want to know what likely to “expect”? Learn DOG LANGUAGE. Thats as “simple” as it is. I believe pure-bred or rescue dog is a CHOICE.
grew up to be –>
I truly believe that if you are an true animal lover, then that choice is a no-brainer. There are millions of unwanted cats and dogs (and of course other animals!) in the world; the death machine is running on high, animals are caught and put down everywhere, everyday. We tend to not want to see that. We tend to look away. My German grandmother, born 1921, claimed until she died that the “German People” didn’t know about concentration camps. Just as we all know that thats bullshit, we have ALL – each and everyone of us – heard about the KILLING STATIONS for stray dogs and cats in e.g. Eastern Europe or the meat factories in Korea. You cringe with that comparison? I invite you to google pictures of such killing stations or read up on the meat factories. That will make you cringe even more.
If you love animals, you save a life. Period. You like Labs? Go to any shelter, look up any rescue homepage. There will be Labs, I promise you, just as about any other breed. So, make a choice. Support the puppy mill or save a life. How easy can a choice be?! And never forget this: deciding for a cat or a dog is a lifetime choice. Cats can easily live to their twenties, dogs – depending on size and breed – can live up to 15 years of age, easily, too. They cost you money – vet, food, medication, sitter, toys etc. They change your life but can also “limit” it – for example – if you like to travel (not being able to take the dog(s)) – who will watch him/her/them?
I believe when you decide for an animal / pet it is like deciding for a child. They are creatures who trust you, rely on you to provide food, shelter and care and love – and you have a responsibility for them until they die; and if you should die before them, you have a responsibility to make sure they are well taken care of after you depart. Puppies or kittens are fun and cute and cuddly and sweet; but they grow up to be dogs and cats with individual characters that may just turn out to be the opposite of all that. Will you still want them or love them then?! Are you prepared to be a friend, a caretaker, a sitter, a parent to those furry kids of your’s? Are you prepared to be as dedicated as this dog papa? Sean Ellis – Kubrick The Dog
Our animals (come back for a later post to hear all about them 🙂 ) are one of the best things that ever happened to me, each in it’s own right. They make my life better, everyday. They brighten my mood, make me laugh, offer unconditional love. They love me even when I don’t love myself, they comfort me when I feel down. They “force” me to exercise, to be responsible, and through them I have learned from an early age on what it is like to take on a lifetime responsibility for another breathing living being. They are essential for my well-being. If you feel the same about your furry kids (or don’t feel that way at all!), please feel free to leave a comment or question below and I’d be happy to answer!
Thanks for taking the time to read this and remember – adopt, don’t shop!!!