Hamsters and Waffles and Snakes! Oh My!
At one point in my childhood, my family housed two cats, two dogs, a couple of hamsters, a bunch of fish and a newt. My husband also had a pet-filled childhood, including some goats and chickens (I know – hardcore, right?), so it’s odd that we don’t have more animals in our life (unless you count our kids – rimshot!).
We had a lovely, crazy cat named Dude, but he went to the great litter box in the sky shortly after we had our son. Near the end he was peeing all over the place, so I’m worried a new cat would declare open season on my furniture. We also tried three goldfish (Goldie, Goldie and Goldie) but after a few months Goldie had cannibalized his buddies.
I only notice the absence of animals in our home during winter, when neighbours trudge past our house dragging their mutts in the snow, usually while we’re watching Mad Men re-runs in front of a fire. But lately there have been signs that even if I don’t want a pet, apparently I need one. Desperately.
Most children have stuffed animals or dolls that they imagine to be pets, but not my kid: last year my daughter dragged a waffle iron around by the cord calling it “Woofie” for months.
This year she is Woofie, demanding that we walk her around the house with a skipping rope tied around her waist – but I draw the line at feeding her from a bowl on the floor.
My son’s ideal pet varies from snakes (not gonna happen) to parrots (I’d rather have a snake) to hamsters (I remember sneaking around with my mom to replace my sister’s dead hamsters on what felt like a weekly basis…no thank you).
Both kids have taken to harassing any poor animal that comes within arm’s reach. This was particularly evident when we were in Serbia last summer: in a 48-hour period, they’d adopted three barn cats, two chickens, a cow and some dead bugs.
Since this city slicker doesn’t do the whole farm animal thing, I figure that we need to get a dog this year. Either that or I’m gonna need a new waffle maker.