Not a “pet person.”

I’ve never been a pet person. That hasn’t stopped me from irresponsibly obtaining pets over the years. My last pet, a dog I named “Bubble,” was a six-year-old shelter pooch, a chihuahua min-pin mix, I was told by the shelter staff.

I had been widowed a few years earlier, and the last of my grown sons had left home a month before. I had never slept in a house by myself before the night my son moved out. I was afraid of the dark. And I had been in recovery for just about a year. I thought getting a dog to keep me company was a good idea. Well, it might have been if I:

A.) weren’t allergic to dogs (and cats, too)

B.) enjoyed playing with animals

C.) took an interest in animals the way others on this blog do.

Face it: I’m just not a pet person! Of course, I should have faced that fact before I adopted Bubble!

Fate intervened in the form of a man I started seeing and his teenaged son. I moved in with them, rented my own house to a tenant, and started living life in the wilds of suburbia. Bubble came, too, and found a friend in that rather lonely teenaged boy.

A year went by, and although the relationship didn’t work out for my man and me, Bubble and his boy had become attached to one another. The boy gave him the love and attention I couldn’t. And Bubble gave him what pets give to the people who love them.

I learned a lot from my year in suburbia, and not all of it was very nice–I learned how irresponsible I can be when pursuing my own ill-thought-out goals, for one thing.  But at least I learned, and today I can make changes–and one of those changes includes leaving Bubble with his boy. They are really meant to be together, and I wasn’t meant to be a part of their household, after all. But maybe, when the time is right, I can visit them all.

Next time I get the urge for a pet, I’ll remember–I’m not a pet person!

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One Response to Not a “pet person.”

  1. Salty Dog says:

    When I was a child I asked my father if we could get a dog. He said he didn’t want one. I asked him why. He said that as a child his dog bit another kid. The dog was put down. Later the other boy said he was mistaken and that another dog had bitten him. My dad was devastated to find out his dog had been needlessly put down. My father said that is why we were not getting a dog. Evidently, he wanted to be spared the pain of becoming attached to another dog only to endure the pain of loss when that dog too died or was put down. Maybe he was trying to spare me the same pain of loss. After all, like people, all pets die. I learned at an early age to avoid becoming “attached” emotionally to a pet. I can only assume that this attitude also applies to the people in my life. When I read Tails I got the impression that attachment is a necessary part of life and attachment will eventually bring about the pain of grief and loss. We must attach and experience our emotions to fully grasp and understand the meaning of life. For the addicts who shared their stories in Tails it seems their attachment to their pets was their lifeline in a sea of addiction, despair, and loneliness. How many people are able to acheive a level of intimacy, acceptance, and love for a pet that they could never achieve with another human being. It makes you wonder “what’s a pet got that another person doesn’t have?” After reading Tails it seems pets offer many things that humans do not. On a practical level service animals can help the hearing or sight impaired. I have even read about dogs and cats that can sense when a diabetic is experiencing a low blood sugar reaction. Somehow I learned from reading Tails that what pets offer humans on a practical or intellectual level comes no where near what they offer on an emotional or spiritual level. I have much to learn and Tails has started me on that path. Pets and humans need touch, companionship, and play time. Otherwise, I think we miss out on the many joys life has to offer. I may or may not ever get a pet but I certainly appreciate the time I spend petting and playing with others’ pets. Tails has taught me to see animals in an entirely new light.

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