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Comfort Creatures

Comfort Creatures

There is hardly anything better than the unconditional love of a pet or two or three. And there isn’t much I could possibly say that a pet owner doesn’t already know, but I’ll give it a try. We have 3 pets, 3 kids, so I guess 3 is our number. Each one of our pets (and kids) has their own personality but the longer they live together the more alike they appear or at least act.

Our cat Nisse is over 10 years old which makes her the oldest pet in our house. She has been limited to cat food most of her life but since we moved to the south, her palate has expanded. When it’s time to clear the plates after a meal, she will line up and wait for some scraps or leftovers, just like the dogs- it’s quite funny. The dogs will even allow her to sample the pickings, unless she is too slow, then the black lab Kira will gobble her morsel of food without any consideration for Nisse’s slow grazing tendencies.

All our pets come from one type of rescue or another. Nisse came from a literal crazy cat-lady’s home in town. Kira, the black lab came from an organization called Adopt a Lab, no longer in existence. The baby of the group, Teaka is from an organization called Sweetest Dog Rescue, I think that is the name.

If it wasn’t for my kids, and me being a total push-over, we would have 1 pet at a time. However, I love having a few extra pets in the house, especially since we moved over a year ago. My husband travels a bit, not too much, but when I’m home alone I certainly feel better having my 4 legged creatures very nearby. We try to keep some boundaries but sometimes that is a big fail, especially when I’m home alone. I do prefer not to have my pets on furniture but it does happen now and then (as evident in the picture above).

I am not a fan of the smells and excess shedding that unfortunately occur when you own pets. It is a price you pay with pets in the house. I also am a fan of candles, soy candles in particular, which I admit it not a real solution at all. It is strange how different breeds release different odors or none at all. Hmm maybe not so unusual but perhaps it’s time to try some corrective action like a product called Dinovite. I hear their commercial on Sirius Satellite Radio and I think it might be a worthwhile investment.

I’m wondering how many of you feel somewhat defensive of your pets-at least at times? My pets are not perfect. When someone comes to the house they’ll bark, which is to be expected. If they soon realize that the visitor is a friend and not a foe, they are so excited of your arrival and I’m certain they think you are there to see them. They can’t get enough of you which I admit can be annoying at times. But, if the “visitor” is not a fan of one of my pets and it’s obvious, at least to me, I might feel a little defensive. There might be something wrong with “them” not my pet. But that being said, I will certainly remove the dogs from the situation so the visitor doesn’t have to be bombarded with love and affection that is not appreciated and certainly not reciprocated.

But the best part of having pets is the comfort they provide. They truly are the ultimate givers and never takers. You-the pet “owner” can do no wrong in their eyes. Even if you make a poor decision regarding your pet, they forgive you and love you right back-offering no complainants and no sense of guilt.

If you have a cat you know they can be very persistent. If they want something, entrance to a closet or your room while you’re asleep, they will meow, scratch the door or even put their paw under the door and wiggle or even shake it, until you cave and give in or chase them away. Just like having a child, sometimes you might need to let them cry. However, if Nisse doesn’t get her way, she holds no ill-feelings towards us. She’ll join us when she’s allowed and purr and knead as if nothing ever happened. It’s very sweet.

The same goes for the dogs. They have short term memory when it comes to being reprimanded, which I think is a good thing. Our dogs are not formally trained and may lack some obedient skills but they are quite lovable and if you want or need a little cuddling, they are eager to comply and deliver.

As I write this, I have one dog at my feet on an oversized footstool (black lab Kira) the little kitty Nisse is on a very large dog bed, somewhat sunken in the middle, and Teaka, the other dog, well she left a bit annoyed once seeing Nisse on a dog bed. It’s just not right!

Some recap and observations: just like family members who live together start “acting” alike, that seems to be happening with our pets. Also as parents, we tend to get defensive of our kids, that too is projected onto my pets. The other observation is identifying ourselves as pet “owners”. I’m not sure I like that label- owners. They’re part of our family. How about pet caregivers, it’s so much nicer. Lastly, and maybe the most important; wouldn’t it be great if we could forgive, forget and move on like pets do? They harbor no ill-feelings towards us. We often carry so much extra baggage and hurt feelings around that we’re left with one big cumbersome burden. If we just would let go, even a little, I think we would be freer to love more unconditionally like our pets love us and maybe be a bit happier too. Our pets can teach us a valuable lesson of forgiveness. I think it’s worth consideration and maybe some deliberate effort on our part.

It’s easy to love my pets. They greet me with overwhelming love and affection.

Bottom line, can’t imagine life without pets.