Thursday, May 21, 2009

Spin Cycle- Pets

Go visit Jen over at Sprite's Keeper for more exciting pet stories.

Well, as those of you who have read this blog before know, I have this thing about dogs.  Currently, it extends to 3.  They're over there in the sidebar.  My husband claims I  love them more than the kids on the evidence that I've taken far more pictures of them than the kids.  To which I answer, yeah, but now I have a digital camera. Which makes taking pictures so much easier. Not to mention cheaper.

I've had my share of pets over the years.  A turtle when I was in elementary- boring- but mostly dogs growing up.  With our kids, we've had cats, rats and fish (also boring).

Let me just say this- I am not a cat person.  I don't care for them and the feeling appears to be mutual.  The best cats are ones that belong to someone else.  Cute and worthy of a few strokes of the head but not something to bring home.  I did have a cat of my own once.  Before I realized the folly of cat ownership. This cat was, well, mean as hell.  Dexter was his name.  He was mostly Maine Coon, so he was good sized.

The photo, while not showing off his size, does capture his essential nature- which was evil. Dexter had a thing about men.  He thought all men played (read were playthings) like my husband.  Their play included attempted biting and racking of back claws while my husband held his head.  While this did not injure Hubby (skin like leather) most everyone else fared not so well.  He liked to lure them into a false sense of security.  He'd purr and head butt their hand and when they got comfortable and looked away-he'd attack.  We tried to warn a friend of ours who was certain that he knew cats and would be just fine but as soon as David looked away, Dexter bit him in the webbing between his thumb and forefinger. He got very little sympathy from me.

Dexter had his moments, to be sure.  We got a second cat in the misguided attempt to provide him a "friend". Sheba was sweet, gentle and dumb as dirt.  Dexter loved to chase her around the apartment.  We had a one bedroom apartment at the time that had a series of columns creating a partition between the living room and the dining area. Dexter loved to chase Sheba from the bedroom through the living room between the columns through the dining area and back.  We liked to store a sheet of plexiglass there, propped up against the columns. (We used it for D&D.  We're nerds like that. ANd we still have it 20+ years later.) One day Dexter chased Sheba like always except that when she got to the columns she didn't realize the plexiglass was there.  She hit that piece of plastic head first so hard her butt bounced off the sheet above her head. She staggered off and Dexter, I swear to you, sat in the middle of the living room- and laughed.  About 30 minutes later, he did it to her again.  After which she went and hid under the bed.

Dexter did not adjust well to the arrival of the children and eventually escaped our clutches and made his way solo.  Sheba was much relieved.  And got so bold after his departure that she left us as well.

The girls got their own cats when they were young- Kacie and Sheba the second.  I've written about them before and suffice it to say Kacie was sweet but dumb and Sheba was mean.  Seems like that's all I can find in the feline department.  The girls also had a series of fancy rats.

Rats turned out to be pretty cool.  They have personalities and everything. The only real drawback to rats, besides the cage, is the fact that they only live about 2 to 3 years.  Just long enough to get attached.  I even had a rat.  His name was Duncan and he was huge.  I'd take him out of the cage and he'd dive into  my shirt.  We called him the boob rat.  But he was sweet.  As soon as he felt comfortable, he'd come out and explore. Our last rat earned his name by escaping when we first got him and hiding under the refrigerator.  He was Virgil "The Cooler King" Hilts. He lived the longest of any of our boys- almost 4 years.

Rowan, obviously, liked the rat.  Scooter, being part terrier, did not.  He used to get the shakes whenever we brought them out.  That is, until he got old enough that he couldn't see or smell them any more.
So, those are the pets.  I've had dogs: Jodie, Dingo, Susie, Loche, Scooter, Rowan, Myrddin and Aibhne.  Cats: Dexter, Sheba, Kacie and Sheba. Rats: Cris, Pinkie, Duncan, Pato, Adrian and Virgil.  Fish: Sam, Jack, Daniel, Teal'C, Bael, Vala (Those were Youngest's folly, never to be repeated).  I can safely say that I think animals are generally worth the trouble.  They're great for kids. They not only teach them responsibility but about the inevitable way life ends. I would encourage any one with children over the age of 5 to get a pet if they don't have one already. 
But from now on, I think I'll stick to dogs.

1 comment:

Sprite's Keeper said...

Wow, your list of pets is long! I'm not a cat person either. The two my sister had were inherently evil and liked to sit on my chest after I fell asleep and stare at me so I would wake up to see this piercing gaze and freak me out. Ugh. You're linked!