Monday, April 6, 2009

Ode to My Pets

"Help! Something is wrong with my chick!"
My mother, still asleep in bed, opened her eyes to my seven year old self dangling a purple Easter chickie inches above her face.
"It's dead," was her reply.
"Eeeeewwww!" screamed little me, immediately releasing it upon her unsuspecting face.
There's a reason why they don't allow purple, pink, and blue chickies during the Easter season any more because of high mortality rates. Why I was allowed to have a purple chickie while living in a high-rise apartment building, I'll never know. Had she survived her purple-ness, there couldn't have been a bright future ahead of her.

No Cats Allowed
My childhood was full of pets. Multiple bunnies, turtles and goldfish. Others included a sea horse and a canary, and always a dog, but never a cat. My mother's childhood Persian had a "crazy fit" one day and Grandmother called Grandad the sheriff who took the cat away, and no one ever spoke of the results. Cruel boys on the playground , however, did suggest the nearby Mississippi River.

My Childhood Dogs
Tried to ride Pudd the Dachshund like a horse and still have the facial scars to document his response. Pepe Levine the Jewish poodle was adopted from my grandmother's friend because I had wanted a poodle so badly. On my seventh birthday I received Coquette "Cokie" the French toy poodle (in the 60's the dog was always introduced as a French poodle...with a pedigree) who survived until I was married.

Kinleystead Dog Roster
The Kinleystead has seen Tifhy the Lhasa Apso (RIP... who loved to bite my boys' rear ends. After baths they would run naked through the house screaming with Tifhy following behind), Pepper the Cocker Spaniel (now blind, who the Kinley boys wish RIP upon because she is 12 and still not housetrained), and Mac the Labradoodle ( adored, spoiled by all, promoted to human status).

The Kinleystead Zoo
I think all families should have pets. Their chirps, their licks, their dependence, their humor all breathe life into a household.
At the pinnacle , of the Kinleystead's pet keeping there were two dogs, two birds, 3 bunnies, and a revolving door of lizards, frogs, and abandoned baby birds. No cats. No ferrets. No snakes or tarantulas. No rodents with tails.

How Pets Met Their Ends
I am a very faithful pet caregiver, so I was surprised to recount how many Kinleystead pets had met"untimely" or even violent departures.
  • P.J. Funnybunny: "The flies have killed my bunny!" screamed five year old Clayton from the Kinleystead back yard...too much sun.
  • Spot the Bunny: gone after only two days...too much birthday party.
  • Puddles, Toot, and Flops (all bunnies): ripped violently out of cages by unknown animals.
  • Cotton and Brownie (also bunnies): sent to the rabbit adoption center when one hissed...didn't know they did that... at me; the other leapt through the air and bit Flops who I was holding...scary.
  • Noah the Lovebird: nicknamed "Vampire" because his beak drew so much blood from any hand that came near his cage. He deserves his own blog post...stay tuned.
  • Ringo the Quaker Parrot: oh...what a story...he will definitely have his own post!
  • Little Caesar the Tail-less Hamster: bought for a book report visual and lasted 2 years...think that's all that can be expected out of a hamster.
  • Grumm the also Tail-less Hamster: replaced Little Caesar, escaped a lot, and got on his squeaky wheel at precisely 9:00 nightly...lasted 1 1/2 years.
More Pets to Come
Have I mentioned I have always wanted to raise chickens who lay eggs? And I still have a soft spot in my heart for bunnies hopping about the garden. When my nest is empty, I wonder if I will fill it again with pets...hmmm.

What was Your Fave Pet or Pet's Name?

1 comment:

  1. I was big on assorted hamsters growing up and even had one in college. But my dog growing up - Candy - was a cocker poo and such a sweet, awesome dog.

    Now I have two dogs of my own - Luna and Angel, American Eskimo dogs (frequently appearing on my blog, as I'm sure you have noticed! lol!) and I love and adore them with all my heart!!! They are my comic relief, and their sweet little ways and happy little smiles bring me so much joy :)

    Meg :)