Friday, June 22, 2012

Pets! Two Bring DOUBLE The Love! Pets Add Life!

I have loved animals for as long as I can remember.

When I was born we had a Boxer named "Brandy" whom I adored. At the tender age of 2 or 3 I would hide under my bed facing OUT...Brandy would get on all fours, poke her face under the bed skirt facing me and allow me to squeeze and tickle her jowls. I would giggle with abandon and patient Brandy would allow me to amuse myself until I was overcome with laughter.

Sadly, we lost Brandy to cancer at the young age of 7. My parents (my mother in particular) couldn't bear to go through that loss again, so our home remained pet- free.

I always felt a void.

I did derive happiness from animals on TV, particularly Lassie, and our neighbors who lived across the street's Sheltie that was named "Dandy." Truth be told, I ONLY played with the children that owned "Dandy" because I was mesmerized by,  and deeply in love with their dog. 

Of course I had the requisite goldfish and  turtles, but I couldn't really cuddle them.
My "Baby Bobo"

 I once found an abandoned kitten in our backyard whom I lovingly cared for for a month, until my mother (who loathed cats) made me give her up. I often cite this incident as being when my love and obsession with cats began. In college, I had a hamster, but it wasn't until I was well into adulthood that I had my first cat, my Angel Bobo with whom I shared 18 love and laughter filled years until he passed in 2007.

When Bobo passed I found myself "pet-less" for the first time in 18 years. The pain and loneliness was nearly impossible to bear. Two weeks after Bobo passed I adopted my cuddly Cody from an adoption drive that was being sponsored by PetCo.

Just a few months after adopting Cody, my husband decided to fulfill my life-long dream of owning a Sheltie, and daffy Dakota joined our family.

This is the first time in my life that I have been a pet parent to TWO pets!

yes it's blurry but it is ME and my BOYS!

I love being the "Mom" to not only a cat but a cat AND a dog!

Why do I love being a pet- parent?

I don't have "birth" children of my own and yes, I am one of millions of pet-parents that you meet that view my pets as my "children"  If you think this is crazy, it is YOU that has the problem, NOT ME!

Why do I enjoy having more than one pet?

  • they are DOUBLE the fun!

  • they are DOUBLE the unconditional love!

  • they offer DOUBLE cuddles

  • watching them interact (particularly the dynamics between a cat and a dog) is hilarious!

My "boys" are also the best of friends. Watching them "kiss" each other, play with each other, choosing to sleep near each other and observing them comfort each other when one of them is ill, is not only enthralling but warms my heart.

 The bond that exists between Cody and Dakota is one that even my vet is in awe of. They have a special dynamic that I don't think could ever be duplicated, and it makes me proud that we were able to integrate our dog into our "cat" home with overwhelming success!

I feel that it is of the utmost importance and I am  proud to help share the message that the Pets Add Life (PAL) campaign is trying to spread far and wide, that pets DO indeed "add life!" Pets have been known to help those suffering from depression, stroking a cat has been known to reduce blood pressure. Having a pet in your life brings everyday joy that is impossible to put a price tag on.

It is PAL's hope that by spreading the word, we will see an increase in pet adoptions (those of you who are regular readers of Cat Chat know that we regularly feature adoption events!) and responsible pet ownership. What could be better than THAT? 

Guess what? YOU can help spread the word that "Pets Add Life!"

You can follow PAL's Blog

You can like  PAL on Facebook

Follow PAL on Twitter @petsaddlife

And stay tuned for a new video that we will be sharing in the next month or so that PAL is working on to help promote their initiative!

So, if you have one pet or fifty, give them a kiss and a cuddle from Cody, Dakota and I. If you have been contemplating adopting a pet, what are you waiting for!? There are many fur-babies just waiting too wiggle their way into your home and your heart! Stop sitting on the fence, adopt a pet now!

The love and joy they will bring to your life will be the BEST gifts that you could EVER receive!

This post is sponsored by the Pets Add Life campaign and the American Pet Products Association. I am being compensated for helping spread the word about the benefits and joy of pet ownership. I am honored and happy to do so, for all of the benefits and joy that my babies have brought and continue to bring to ME!


  1. Caren,
    My first pet was also a boxer. He held the "imaginative" moniker of Tuffy. He and I were the best of friends as my parents spent their time with my three youngest sisters. I remember sitting with him and mimicking his every move, including panting :) (I was a pretty silly little girl)

    Fortunately I've had pets my entire life. The only time I lived without them was when I spent my college months in a dorm but I always spent my weekends at home with the cats.

    I'm so glad that you finally got your pet family!

  2. this is why we got Speedy 3 days after thumper passed couldn't bear it with no bunny around and though we picked him most importantly HE picked us!we wouldn't do with out him now even though we still miss thumper and even our first bunny caramel.we are a complete family now With us mum and dad and Speedy!

  3. Mummy loves having her pets around her and says she wouldn't be without any of us, fleas and all!! Well ok, she could do without fleas. Mummy would love a doggy but says she will have to wait until she retires :)xx

  4. Aunty Caren,
    What a sweet story..... Sorry you couldn't attend BlogPaws....our purrrs and hugs for you... purrr...meow!

  5. I've had pets all my life. In fact, I can't remember anytime that I was pet-less. And I cannot imagine a life without a pet. :)

  6. Caren , very nice post , you forget double trouble.
    Best wishes Molly

  7. Sorry you were under the weather and couldn't attend blog paws. Look toward next year......

    pawhugs, Max

  8. Awww sweet Cody and lovely Dakota have such a great mum! Take care

  9. Glad you are having double the fun with you two animals. Noting better than all my animals that I have. Now if I could just win the lottery.LOL. Hope you are feeling a little better. Take care.

  10. I have loved animals as long as I remember, too! I've adopted cats, dogs, hamsters and was always surrounded by fur babies :-)
    I do love watching two babies interact. It's so much fun for us and fun for them to have fur family!

  11. M says she can relate to your story as it is much the same as her story. She just loves furry animals and can't get enough of them. That picture of Cody and Dakota is absolutely gorgeous and so precious.

  12. I bet Cody and Dakota feel the same like you too.

  13. Oops! I forgot to say there is 'DOUBLE HAPPINESS' too!

  14. @Priscilla, I think I forgot to say that there is double happiness too!!!!

    @Mario thank you! If I had a huge house with acreage I would be a crazy cat lady and have a TON of cats. I would have more dogs too but mostly cats. I love the photo of Cody and Dakota as well. I am blessed that they get along the way that they do. xoxoxo

    @Tamago a life without our furbabies would be empty indeed! xoxoxo

    @Marg, I am, thank you! It was the right decision based on my having another litho coming up on July 11...couldn't risk more aggravation. Rest assured that if I ever were to win the lottery you would get a BIG chunk of change from ME!

    @Old Kitty thank you!! Charlie does too! xoxoxo

    @Max yep. I am sorry too :( Was soooo looking forward to it. Was too risky with my kidneys deciding to get "cranky" at the same time. I averted a possible disaster. Next year for sure! It is back in Virginia next year!

    @Molly..."double trouble" for sure! I was being nice! lol

    @The Furries, now...nor can I

    @Cat from Sydney thank you!!!!! xoxoxo

    @Princess Jasmine. Mommy is smart. Dogs are ALOT more work than cats are. Mom loves Dakota sooooo much but he is MUCH higher maintenance than I am! Love, Cody

    @speedy I can totally relate! I am so sorry about Thumper and Caramel (love those names!!) But you have Speedy and now your home is complete!

    @Andrea thank you for sharing your heart warming story about YOUR boxer. Aren't they just fabulous dogs? Yep, Brandy was the beginning of it all for me. She was such a patient, kind and FUN dog! I love how you imitated him PANTING!! lol. You just reminded me. When I used to watch Lassie when I was young, I would sit at the end and raise my "paw" (hand) with Lassie when Lassie would raise her paw in the final credits. You and I would have been a pair huh? lol

  15. We know our Mum wouldn't ever like to be catless!!
    Luv Hannah and Lucy xx xx

  16. Oh what a sweet blog....animals give us that thing we often talk about but find difficult to really explain - "unconditional love". From the minute we adopted Sammy, our lives have been filled with so much fun and happiness - I doubt we'll EVER have a period in our lives when we're "catless" !!

    Big Hugs
    Pam (and Sam)

  17. Oh Caren, my eyes read your post but my heart and soul heard it loud and clear, I am just like you when it comes to animals, I just know "there's a hole in life that can only be filled with them".

    I had a few dogs while growing up, including a Dalmatian, a boxer (Ginger) and two Cocker Spaniel. Now I have a Labrador that lives with my parents back home.

    Here (well you know) I am the proud "Momma" of 2 crazy dogs and now 7 outdoor kitties which are turning more like dogs each day; they come with me and my dogs for walks and when I call the cats by name they come running out of the woods just like dogs, I adore all of them and are such a HUGE part of my life, can't imagine not having them.

    It's so great to hear about Cody and Dakotas relationship, hope they continue to bring you and each other happiness for many more years to come.

    Have a wonderful weekend!

  18. Dear Caren and Cody and Dakota,
    Our Mommy and Daddy has always been blessed to share their life with dogs and cats and can't imagine nots having any. Me is blessed to has furry siblings.
    Me and my hairy slobbery sister Bob has dropped by to thanks yous for all your kind words and thoughts! Bobby is feeling much better today.
    Kisses and nose nudges
    Nellie and Bob

  19. Sorry to hear you weren't able to attend BlogPaws, Caren. Big purrs and prayers that you feel better soon.

    I love your post. We have two cats now, and we love to observe their distinct personalities and watch their interactions. Growing up, I was lucky enough to have multiple pets (including dog-rabbit, cat-dog, cat-guinea pig-rabbit combos, among others). Pet animals are amazing, and teach us all so much. :)

    Hugs to you, my friend!

  20. Excellent post. I couldn't agree with you more.

    I find it easier to bond with animals than i do with humans. You're right about them being like children they need to be taught boundaries and right from wrong if you want them to grow up well balanced and happy.

    Dogs and cats turn a house into a home. I don't think i could trust a person who dosen't like animals.

    I'm sure Cody our cat thinks he's a dog.

  21. We are a six pack here! My Dad says he is so old he got his first pet from Noah!

  22. You're a great multipet advocate, Caren :) I would have more if I lived on my own!!

    I hope you are feeling much better xox

  23. I can't imagine living without pets. I grew up with 2 boxers, a cocker spaniel, 2 cats, 2 rabbits and 3 mice. When we got married we had 1 cat which at one stage got to 12 cats and 3 ducks. Pets will always give us unconditional love.

  24. Caren, you couldn't have written this at a better time. We just rescued two little bunnies who were going to be slaughtered for meat if no one took them. We now have 2 dogs, 2 cats, 1 ferret and 2 rabbits. We are going to look at a farm property tomorrow lol, I think it's a good idea!!!

  25. Awwwe! what a great post Caren! I ditto your thoughts on our pets are our kids too! :)

  26. @Bassetmomma thank you!!

    @CRichman YAY for YOU and your incredibly kind heart!! I think looking for a larger place with more property is a FABULOUS idea!

    @Eric and Flynn you had Boxers too? I love it! Wow 12 cats at once? You had a lot of land I imagine!

    @Carolyn thank you so much! I would have more as well if we had the room. Only permitted to have two in our condo and due to finances my vet said he would kill me if I have more than two lol

    @Brian "6 pack" love it!! Dad got his "first pet from Noah!" MOL!! I take it the first pets were a "twosome???" :)

    @Sheba I am the same. I sometimes have a hard time with people but animals gravitate to me and always have. I also don't trust ANYONE who doesn't like animals. My Cody thinks he is a dog and Dakota thinks he is a cat! lol

    @Layla thank you!!!!

    @meowmeowmans thank you so much. Broke my heart that I couldn't be there but once I heard the temps in the hotel (and outside) I was comforted with my decision based on how I felt. The heat would have been the end of me! I wish I had had a 2-cat combo. Have never had that. Maybe one day I will! xoxo

    @Nellie and Bob, so happy that Bob is feeling better!!! We are pulling for her! You are blessed to have such wonderful babies and blessed that you also had them in your past. xoxoxo

    @Sunshine your comment was just like YOU, "sunshine!!" I love that you also had Boxers! Such fantastic and playful dogs. Wonderful. Love them! I know you are an incredible "kitty mama" to your outdoor kitties and I know that you are completely devoted to them. Thank you for your comment and I am thrilled that you enjoyed this post.

    @Pam and Sam thank you!!!!!!! I also pray that you are never "catless!!" I cannot imagine you without a cat! You are also an incredible Kitty Mama! xoxoxo

    @Hannah and Lucy I know that too! xoxoxo

  27. Dad says they have always had more than one animal in our home...but right now...I am just too scared to have another cat and I am sure I could not be around a dog, and Dad is pretty allergic to them anyways...'cept for the Sibes they used to have. I think one day I will try out a cat sibling...maybe

  28. Dad says they have always had more than one animal in our home...but right now...I am just too scared to have another cat and I am sure I could not be around a dog, and Dad is pretty allergic to them anyways...'cept for the Sibes they used to have. I think one day I will try out a cat sibling...maybe

  29. Except for the two years she lived in a college dorm, my Human has had a cat or cats since she was three years old (since she is 62 now, that's a LOT of kitties) and she has loved every single one! (Me most of all, of course, MOL!)

  30. @Spitty-Wait! Your human is 62??? You mean we are almost the same age? My Mom is 56!!!! I always thought your human was a baby!!! MOL!!

    @savannah if they don't try out a cat sibling soon you will never have one! That is how it was with Angel Bobo, there was NO WAY he would tolerate another cat! No way!