Monday, July 03, 2006

Pets As Kids?

I made a trip this weekend over to the local Petco because we needed a pet door so our cat Whisky could have access to the basement, where we now keep the "stink box". We're feeding him quality food and he doesn't eat too much, but man, he goes a lot. So anyway, the stink box needed a home away from the family room, and also to give the little beast his privacy. Now that it's super hot he prefers to be in the cool basement, so it will be nice not having to open and close the door per his every whim.

Now I like the cat. He's nice. He's good with the kids. Doesn't scratch. Purrs a lot. He's a good family pet. But that's it. He's not our "baby", he's not our "precious". I like him well enough, but he doesn't rank up there with the kids. He's an animal, and I can see the beauty of God's design in him, and all other animals, but I don't love him like a person. Not even close.

But I know that there are people who feel differently. There are folks who love their pets a whole lot and are willing to put up with great frustrations, just to have them near. I think I saw a demonstration of this at the pet store this weekend.

I had no idea how many people bring their pets to these places. All I can think is that it's just a novelty of being able to bring their pets into one of the few public buildings where they are allowed. It was wild. I was one of the few people not toting around a cat or dog. There was barking, howling, hissing and lots of disciplining, it was all eerily familiar... like a scene right out of a grocery store on a weekday afternoon...

"Stop that Trina. No, honey, that's not for you. Put that down. I said put it down!"
(Dalmatian reluctantly drops bone)

"Mommy just needs to get one more thing and then we'll...oh, Buttercup, would you look at this collar...Do you like it?"
(Calico cat rolls its eyes)

"If you don't stop that right now we're leaving without getting anything... I'm not kidding!"
(Unruly Cocker-Spaniel, tongue drooling furiously, all tangled in the squeaky ball display)

I felt so out of place, kind of like a childless adult in a Chuck E. Cheese. What am I doing here?, I thought. Oh yeah, cat door. I got the thing and ran like heck.

I do care about you, Whisky...enough to never bring you to the pet store. Ever. You can thank me by not eliminating quite so much.

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