Deb Eve rains on the doggy parade!

Oh, gosh, a week of folks gushing about their pets and now it’s my turn. Yes, we have pets, but you won’t find me gushing over them. I don’t dress them up for pictures or parades. (Yes, our town actually held a doggy costume parade last weekend. No, Rufus and I did not attend.) And I don’t sleep with them!

Look, I have kids. Not that I gush over them or dress them up and take them to parades either (or sleep with them … anymore). It’s a good day when I can remember to feed my children (and you know, you really have to feed them more than once a day) and keep them up-to-date on their shots. Doing anything more than that for my pets would really push me over my domestic limit. I mean, I have one pathetic potted plant in my house, which is practically fossilized because I just can’t seem to remember to water it. And the damn thing lives over the kitchen sink, for goodness sake! Every year on Arbor Day, they send a little tree sapling home from school with the kids. Yeah, I think, another damn thing I have to nurture! And sure enough, the tree sapling sits around neglected until it loses its will to live and it eventually joins its brethren out in the woods behind our house. And trust me, it ain’t upright.

But okay, there may have been a time in my life – before all the stress of remembering to feed the kids three times a day – when maybe I did have a softer, fuzzier spot – not to mention the time and disposable income – to baby the pets. After all, wasn’t I the one who brought not one – but two – cats with me to Africa? And this was no simple – or inexpensive feat since we had to pay their tickets by the pound and these were two FAT cats (well, not so fat after a few months in Africa). Oh, and did I mention that one of them was blind? But back then, no cost or effort was too great for the health and happiness of my beloved furry companions.

My how times have changed. Now we have Rufus (a BIG ol’ pound puppy) who had to have surgery to repair a ruptured ACL ($1,500) and then promptly got hit by a car ($900) and now has to have an invisible fence ($1,200). Then there’s Tizzy, our neurotic and highly vocal part-Siamese brought back from Uzbekistan (paid for by the US Government; she was on official business). We recently brought her to the vet ($257) to see if there was some reason for her nearly-constant whining and occasional floor peeing. The vet suggested kitty Prozac ($100/month). And then there’s Nitwit (a.k.a. Killer Kitty) who stays out most nights and only comes home to eat and play just try to catch me you big oaf with Rufus. She’s actually the least demanding of all our pets, and tries to contribute to the family coffers by leaving at least one dead – sometimes dismembered – rodent on our doorstep each day. (Priceless.)

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10 thoughts on “Deb Eve rains on the doggy parade!

  1. Oh Eve, this is exactly why it took my husband two years to talk me into a dog, what you said right here about approaching your domestic limit. And I don’t have houseplants, either. Not a one.

    Your last paragraph slays me!

  2. Eve, I’m kind of with you in the pet camp. I have a rule: Only one creature at a time can pee on the floor of my house. Right now it’s my son (he’s potty training), and so therefore no dog. But if I lived on my dream-horse ranch, I’d have a pair of Irish wolfhounds….

    tiffany

  3. Very funny! Having kids really puts the pet-love into perspective, I have to say. We used to send X-mas cards with our cats on them, and now they’re lucky if they get a new catnip toy.

    My husband is in charge of the houseplants, because I forget to water them, too! The cats always meow when their hungry, and my son whines, but the plants just sit there until they turn brown…

  4. Hi Ladies,
    I was wondering why my daughter did not weigh in on the “pet patter”…but now I know…gosh, she IS honest…noticing the poor parched plant on the sill over the sink last visit…I refrained from pointing this out, lest I be a labled a critical mother…WHICH I AM NOT!!! The pets however, each and everyone is precious to me…I was once accused of comparing them to the human grandchildren…or my furry still peeing on the floor babies, to the human grandchildren…I don’t remember…probably the latter…ARE IMPORTANT IN A FAMILY DYNAMIC. Hey Eve…you did’t tell me Rufus (who by the way is the sweetest big lug ever) was hit by a car…you told me when Jeremiah was…see what I mean ladies? It is fortunate that a electric fence will work for Rufus. When will they invent something for almost teenagers and full fledged teenagers?

    Lest Eve sound like she really is not an animal lover…history will deny this…we had…and she had…pet mice…with the funniest names…gerbils, cats, kittens (which we watched being born), dogs, even fish. Did we have birds…oh that was me, all I was allowed, maybe that is why I almost became the “crazy cat and dog lady” and Eve did not.

  5. Very funny all of you! Katie – I HAD a nanny when my daughter was born. No, wait a minute, a housekeeper, a nanny and several guys who took care of the outside of the house and the dog! And while I still dearly loved my pets … there was and is no comparison to what you feel for your child. Trust me on this. It’s one of those truths you can’t know until it happens.

    St. John has a brother who has no kids but he and his wife truly, truly adore and baby their cats. He came to visit when our daughter was 2 days old and found St. John snuggled with our tiny daughter in bed. My brother-in-law said, “oh, it’s just like having a kitten!” And I nearly strangled him. NO, it is NOTHING like having a kitten.

  6. Oy, Eve, we should talk. I think I’m still on a pet hangover from my first dog (whose myriad medical expenses rocketed into the many thousands and who was one of the early experimenters with Prozac, thanks to her being allergic to the universe). Over the years between the dogs–we’ve had 3 dogs for a grand life total of 26 years (which is about 150 in dog years), cats for a grand life total of 46 years (with a solid combined 10 of these dealing with urinating/pooping/vomiting old age cat issues), puppies (7 born, 4 lived, 10 weeks of tormented hell but absolutely heaven as well, only to then have to let other people take them away from us), then nearly 19 with a parrot. Let me just say, between the poop, the pee, the feathers, fur, dander, toxic poop-breath, the injections, the medicines, the infections from anal glands right up to the ears, I should at LEAST have been a vet just to justify my existence and pay off some of the enormous bills generated by these beasts.
    And yeah, BK (Before Kids), our dog slept in our bedroom. With the first child she was relegated to the hallway. As her nighttime sucking/percolating/gnawing at her allergy-ridden flesh got louder. By the time the 3rd child came along, she’d been relegated to the basement, because it was bad enough being roused all night long by children but by gurgling dog sucking noises? No way, baby.

  7. Oy, Eve, we should talk. I think I’m still on a pet hangover from my first dog (whose myriad medical expenses rocketed into the many thousands and who was one of the early experimenters with Prozac, thanks to her being allergic to the universe). Over the years between the dogs–we’ve had 3 dogs for a grand life total of 26 years (which is about 150 in dog years), cats for a grand life total of 46 years (with a solid combined 10 of these dealing with urinating/pooping/vomiting old age cat issues), puppies (7 born, 4 lived, 10 weeks of tormented hell but absolutely heaven as well, only to then have to let other people take them away from us), then nearly 19 with a parrot. Let me just say, between the poop, the pee, the feathers, fur, dander, toxic poop-breath, the injections, the medicines, the infections from anal glands right up to the ears, I should at LEAST have been a vet just to justify my existence and pay off some of the enormous bills generated by these beasts.
    And yeah, BK (Before Kids), our dog slept in our bedroom. With the first child she was relegated to the hallway. As her nighttime sucking/percolating/gnawing at her allergy-ridden flesh got louder. By the time the 3rd child came along, she’d been relegated to the basement, because it was bad enough being roused all night long by children but by gurgling dog sucking noises? No way, baby.

  8. Oh, yeah … the mice … “Algernon” and “Anonymouse” and a few others and they kept dying and I buried them in the backyard and made teeny tiny tombstones in ceramics class!

  9. …and might I add…mice are really, really dumb…but the best part of the mice…or not…was Grandma Doris (my mom) who had a real phobia about mice…even cute little domestic black and white ones…I think she never went into Eve’s room, or in fact, the boys either…they had gerbils. Now I wonder, was that the real reason for having these smelly little pests, I mean pets? I don’t know…Eve do you know. Sometimes I wonder why I wanted all those critters…they certainly were smelly and expensive. Not like sweet puppies and kitties, who are NOT EXPENSIVE AND SMELLY…who am I kidding.

    Here’s one for you ladies, why do humans (or at least many humans) like to have pets??? I have my ideas…do you?
    t

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