My two dogs and cat are my family. They have been and always will be. They love me unconditionally, and I love them. Well, most of the time. They get into trouble just like the human kids did.
Growing up with pets
I grew up with a multiple kinds of pets. At one point we had a couple of big fish tanks full of fish, two guinea pigs, a hamster, and a poodle.
Over the years, the poodle was all we had left. We moved a couple of times during my childhood so moving 50 gallon fish tanks wasn’t something my parents wanted to do. The hamster died after a couple of years, and the guinea pigs were donated to the children’s zoo in Fort Wayne.
Our poodle, Snoopy, lasted 14 years growing up with me. He was like another little brother to me. I had grown so attached to him that when he died I had no idea what I would do without him.
My last memory of him is when I had come home from college for the weekend. He had been asleep as I entered the house. My bedroom was in my house opposite end of where he had been asleep in his crate.
Pretty soon, I hear what sounded like a little horse running down the hall. In my doorway, there he stood — all 14 pounds of white fluff. He was so happy to see me. I’ll never forget the way he stood there looking at me with his brown eyes.
It was shortly after this that the tumor he’d had in his mouth returned. The tumor had been removed once back in the spring that year, and the vet wouldn’t operate again. In fact, the vet was surprised Snoopy had made it through the first surgery. Normally dogs his age didn’t.
What would I do without my pets?
As a single mom, I don’t know what I would do without my three fur babies. When I’ve read articles that say people who have pets have lower blood pressure among other things, I truly believe them.
My fur babies always been there when I needed a good cry. They keep me sane when I feel stressed, and they entertain me when I need a laugh. Believe me when I say it’s like a three-ring circus in my house at times.
My three fur babies
When my kids and I first moved into our house, they begged me for a dog. I had promised them one once we moved into our own place. We rescued Zoe, our border collie/beagle mix, over 12 years ago from the humane society.
She has been with me through everything — a custody battle, a job loss. The hardest thing was watching her after my daughter moved out and cut ties with me. Zoe laid on the floor of my daughter’s empty bedroom for a week. I looked into her eyes and knew what she was thinking — Mom, where is Ashley?
That ripped my heart out even more. Zoe loved my daughter and was in her room more than anywhere else in the house.
In the last year, I’ve watched Zoe age quite a bit. I get teary-eyed every time she acts funny or misses the step into the house after being outside. Not knowing how much longer I will have with her, I cherish every minute I have with her.
Several years ago, my daughter rescued Gizmo, our ragdoll/Siamese mix, from a friend. Even though my grandma had cats when I was a child, I’m not a cat person. However, I didn’t have the heart to see him sent to the humane society.
Gizmo isn’t like most cats I’ve been around. He’s the most loving little guy. He holds his own with the two dogs, and I’m proud of him for that.
Then there’s little Jessie. Gosh, she’s been a blessing in my life. I can depend upon her for the laugh I need at the end of a long, stressful day. She can make me laugh out loud.
The fall after my daughter moved out, Jessie joined our family. She’s a Pomeranian/chihuahua mix who loves chasing these three balls around the house.
When she’s ready to play, she’ll get one and bring it to me. And she won’t leave me alone until I toss the ball with her for a few minutes. Heck, she even brings them to bed with her.
The future and my kids
As my son prepares to graduate from high school this spring, I don’t know what his future plans will be. I’ve told him he can stay with me for as long as he likes. However, I know at some point he’ll want to get his own place.
Whenever the time comes, I’ll still be a single mom who lives alone with her three fur babies. And I will survive someway, somehow, like I always have and always will.