Pets, to have or not to have them

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Hubby has been trying to convince me to get a dog to the girls. And I am decided to stick with my decision of not having pets until they can look after it themselves. And by they I mean the three of them: the girls and hubby.

Before you think I’m a cruel soul that doesn’t like animals, let me clarify that I had my lifetime share of pets during my childhood – rabbits, dogs, parrots, monkeys, tortoises, turtles, hens and rooster, guinea pigs, white mice. I liked having pets, a lot, but never felt this unconditional love that many people feel. Part of me thinks that this lack of unconditional love was due to the fact that I hated to know they would die before me (and eventually they all did). I should know by now that this is the cycle of life (*pause for Lion King’s soundtrack here*), but in my mind it just feels like masochism to carry on with it. I can’t do any more death and I cannot deal with corpses. That simple.

There are a few other reasons why I am reluctant to have any pets:
– Normal people can go on a two week (or more) holiday and leave their pets with neighbours, hotels, carers. I don’t like the idea. If you ever had a dog in your life, you know how attached to their owners they are and the whole idea of leaving them makes me sad.
– On a similar note as above, we spend 12 hours out and about and the poor animal will be at home on its own (and will be needy when we come back and no one will sleep until very late). Not fair to the pet; not fair to me.

– Having a dog to me is almost like having a third child. Not on the unconditional love side, but on hard work side. They can get ill, they need attention, they eat your shoes (when they are babies), they bark at night, they pee and poo everywhere until they are potty trained. But they don’t talk, they never will and you will always be guessing what they are really feeling.

– I know that my little troop here will want to have all the fun and mummy will end up having to do the dirty job. I don’t want to have to clean poo, bathe, take for walks, miss work to take the pet to the vet… it might sound cruel, I know, but I rather be honest than to end up extremely grumpy doing things I don’t want to just because no one else will and then regret having the poor animal at home. And worse: giving the dog away because it’s too much work (now THAT is cruel).

– When I was younger (“so much younger than today”) I was extremely allergic to cats and dogs fur. As in spending days scratching my nose and sneezing non-stop and on medication to be able to sleep. Laura might have asthma/bronchitis. What if she is allergic as I was? It is worth putting her through this if we can avoid it?

– They will both go to a childminder that has a cute and friendly dog. They will spend more time with the childminder than at home. There, it’s almost like having their own dog, without worrying what the heck we do with it when we want to go on holidays.

=> Dogs are by far my favourite type of pet. I find rabbits cute but that’s about it, no other “use”. Hamsters give me the creep (giant mice). Cats are not welcome in this house (despite being Laura’s favourite). Fish… I consider them decoration, like a vase or a picture on the wall; and a very high maintenance decoration, since it involves feeding and clearing the tank (or maybe there are modern gadgets that auto feed and clean it for you. I have a feeling the girls would lose interest on a turtle quite quickly. And foxes and squirrels are illegal to have as pets I think (and apparently they are not very safe). And I find it cruel to have caged birds. So… Tamagoshi anyone?!

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2 responses »

  1. Get a dog, will you woman?
    The girls will looooove!
    I have two now (one stayed at my mom’s while we were in the US, and addopted another one 2 weeks ago)!
    My girls are mad about them!
    I am kinda like you, am not head over hills about animals. Aminals are animals, not humans, even though some say they are even better. Still, I treat them well, but not as a child of my own.
    I feed, take them to pet shops so they can bathe, stroll in the neighborhood… But they sleep on their beds, they eat dog food… (I have to addmit we took the little one to Guarujá this weekend, but had to choose a pet friendly hotel and let her there while we went to the beach.)
    But I believe they teach a lot to my kids. They teach uncondittional love, sharing, cuddling and taking care of. They know one of us has to take care of the dogs, and they help (in their way)! Dogs bring happiness anytime!
    And you don’t need a puppy! Adopt an older one (not too old aince you can’t handle deaths), like 2 years old, already potty trained and that won’t eat your shoes!
    I’m with Mr.C and the girls, you should get a dog!!! Soon!!!

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