Count the Bad Mommies

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

To Pet or not to Pet . . .

I honestly don't think a pet gives children any sense of responsibility at all. Unless you insist they feed said pet, and then said pet would die because said child would not feed said pet. Then said child would cry and said parent could say "Well you obviously aren't responsible for a pet yet, are you?". Said parent would be a bit of an ass though, wouldn't they?

I got Ciara a cat when she was two. Her name is Lulu, and her lift doesn't even reach the first floor, poor thing. Lulu the cat is fed by me. Ciara loves 'her' cat a lot though. But that is where it ends.

We now have one cat and three dogs, all of them are Ciara's (if you ask her). But they are all fed, cleaned and housed by me (and my mom.)

Pets can be really good for kids. Ciara and Cleopatra (the black lab) have so much fun together. "Find Ciara" is one of our favorite games, where Ciara hides and Cleo searches for her everywhere. Lots of fun.

But pets have a downside too. They die. Before we do. When we lost Priscilla (the female* goldfish) and then later Elvis (the male* goldfish) there were many tears and there is nothing I, as a parent, could do but just let her cry. The heartbreak (for both of us) is agonising.

A little side bar story. I had a cat named Jessie from when I was about 10. When she was 11, and I was 21 Jessie was old and she died. This was heartbreaking, but understandable (I was 21 afterall). Jessie was soon replaced by Poe the mini-cat. I loved Poe very much, and she went missing after only about 6 months, and we later discovered she had been hit by a car. I was devastated. I vowed never to get another pet - EVER.

I only got my next pet when I was 27 years old (the aformentioned Lulu), and I refused to love this cat until about 2 years ago. The death of Poe had affected me that badly.

Since Ciara is a mini-me, I worry that she will be as deeply affected by the death of a pet** as I was, and still am.

* The sex of the goldfish was just decided as we wanted to name them Priscilla and Elvis. I have no idea how one determines the sex of a goldfish.

** Goldfish don't count as 'real' pets. Because they are goldfish.

1 comment:

angel said...

nice post.
its like whilst greebo is SO damien's cat- i feed and look after taxi and greebo both and i make the rules regarding the cats...
and i will be totally heartbroken when i lose them one day.