oh ticking clock, is there anything you can't do
We are coming to New York for most of the next few months (WHOO-HOO!) and our flight is on Sunday. At the same time, a major network has given us the go-ahead to write our pilot script (WHOO-HOO!) and I'll be writing the first draft over the next two days. So I'm going to leave it to our early risers to give today's CODE WORD question... how 'bout it, CM? Or you PEI'ers!
Posted by Ian Williams at November 11, 2009 11:22 PM
We have two dogs (shih tzus). We got them before the kids were born, so the extent of their "helping out" is limited to letting them in or out. Sometimes during the warmer weather they will help me take them for a walk.
They were crate trained as puppies, and my husband works close enough to have been able to come home during lunch to let them out. It was good when they were younger that there were two of them but today they do their own thing and hang out in different places. In addition, now that they are older and can go through the day, they have free rein of the downstairs. The leftover baby gate is put at the foot of the stairs so they cannot go up there. We've definitely had our share of accidents--the steam cleaner was the one of the best investments we've made!
First I want to echo Ian: WHOO-HOO!!!! I'm so excited to hear about the pilot script.
Daisy, 11 year old pit/beagle mix.
Blueberry and Puff Birdy, male parakeets
My first pets were turtles, the red-eared kind that now carry salmonella. I loved them so much. One of ours survived from quarter-sized to a 6" shell... he was easily in his teens. RIP, Iggy.
Then: a rescued beagle from Bide-A-Wee shelter in NYC. Dopey old dog, but I adored him.
Parakeet and canary.
From age 19 on, it's been all dog(s), all the time. There is nothing on earth that will love you the way a dog does, seriously.
We have an unbelievably smelly pug named Chauncey who has a brain the size of a pea and a bladder to match. I second the shout out for the steam cleaner.
We also have Cecil, a huge and hairy cat that I love to death. He's getting up there in years which I try not to think about too much because it makes me sad to imagine him not with us anymore.
The kids? They might let the dog in or out or feed him if I ask, but really I do most of the work.
One pet, cat. She turned 17 earlier this month. Her brother passed away 1.5 years ago, in his sleep. (Best way to go!) I did not realize what a commitment it was when I answered that "free kittens" ad at the age of 23. She's in quite good health. Vet said she could live to be 25. A good example for your kids when you talk about the RESPONSIBILITY of having a pet.
My kids are able to care for the cat fine, but they tend to give her too much food, which goes to waste. She's a tiny thing, and eats very little. I change the kitty box.
We have 3 pets- Parker, beagle(how funny that so many of us have/had beagles) age 13. She is MY dog as I've had her longer than I've known my husband.
Sadie- lab/ collie mix- age 11. The most loyal, loving creature I've had the pleasure of knowing.
Batfish- newly acquired beta fish for my 5 year old. He was helpful at first, but the novelty wore off and now it's my fish.
Ben will feed the girls when asked, but they are more his "sister-dogs" then pets he feels responsible for. I got my first "very own" dog at 7 and it wasn't until I was about 10 or so that I really remember being in charge of her. She lived to be 17, so I guess we did something right.
As the name suggests, my favorite pets are rats. Our then 8-year-old son got a sibling pair of girlie rats from a wildlife rehab center, where they had been foredoomed to be fed to birds-of-prey. The boy was diligent about feeding and playing with them (he's a lonely/only child, so they were good company) but less helpful about cage-cleaning.
The boy is twelve now, on his 3rd and 4th rat (the first two having gone on to rat-heaven), cleans rat cages, feeds dogs (big black dogs), and otherwise makes himself useful. Pets teach *some* children a sense of responsibility. My wife is the dog-lover, having adopted another large black thing just this year. Dogs are okay. :)
'Tis a house full o' wee beasties and great beasties.
Emma- not sure if you are still reading, but I assumed you asked this question b/c you are considering a pet. Here's my advice. Nothing like a dog for true unconditional love and bonding.
However, puppies are an enormous amount of work and very difficult to deal with at first unless you can get home at lunch to walk/let them out and devote a lot of time to them. They can also chew stuff like crazy. One of our friends puppies (a lab) chewed all the baseboards off their kitchen and chewed a hole into the wall of the pantry trying to get to the dog food. Crate training helps some with both of these things and of course, I highly recommend the invisible fence for the person (like me) who is too lazy to walk their dog.
In my mind adopting a (young) adult dog that is already house trained is ideal. You can contact rescue agencies that specialize in certain breeds and adopt an adult like this pretty easily. That way, you've done a good deed and bypassed the tough part of raising a puppy. Shelters are another way to go but you won't know that much about the dog's background (ie are they house trained, friendly with kids, etc.).