A Pet In Need Is a Pet Indeed
By Sandy Schroeder
It always seems to work out when you provide a home for an animal who really needs one. Over the years, my family adopted a variety of animals needing homes. Each one worked out just beautifully.
My oldest was about 8 when he came running down the street with a spunky little black spaniel. He found him two streets away, and carefully lured him home with treats. We posted flyers, and canavassed the neighborhood, but no owner emerged. Bandit, who was aptly named, since he loved stealing fried chicken or chocolate, quickly became a treasured part of the household.
Houseful of Happiness
At the height of our pet years, when my kids were in the 7 to 12 range, we had (not all at one time) a small snake in an aquarium, a large white lab rat, a tank of tropical fish, three cats, and two dogs. My oldest always wanted an African Gray parrot, but we missed that one.
It was a good-sized house, and the pets were not there all at once. But as they appeared, my kids learned a lot about caring for them, taking responsibility for someone (or something) else, and just how comforting a wet-nosed furry creature can be when things do not go right. They always understand. They never talk back, and they are always there for you.
Pets and children are naturals. So are seniors and pets. I think you can blend in a pet at almost any time, if you pick carefully.
Consider the Situation
If you think it would work, do your homework before you mention it. Do you have room? Are there any pet restrictions? Is anyone in the house allergic to cats or dogs? Will someone be home if you get a dog, or can you provide a dog door and a backyard?
When everything seems to work, you can let the cat, dog, or whatever out of the bag. Make sure everybody is on board, and consider providing a home for a pet who really needs one.
If you want a kitten, look for someone who takes in litters. Your local vet might know someone. We had friends who did this. They would find litters, bring them all in, arranging shots, and litterbox training.
We did this with a pair of pure black Siamese males, and later with a marmalade orange cat, who grew to be huge and seems to have jungle relatives, judging by his assertive nature. But he’s a real pussycat when you get to know him, and he’s still on board, calling as many shots as he can.
Enjoy the pursuit. If you are lucky, the pets will become fast friends, sticking around for years to brighten life.
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