Pets & Who Owns Whom

When we lived in Wyoming we adopted a dog from the shelter. She ran away the first day, jumping a 6 foot fence. After that she never was happy if she was more than 6 feet distant from my wife.

A cat that someone had abandoned in the country stopped by for a visit and stayed for quite a while. He lived outdoors but slept indoors. It was Wyoming, after all. When we moved, both moved with us. The cat would head out each night, and return in the morning, after which he’d try to get the dog’s attention. The dog would ignore the cat, after which the cat would spend time with my wife.

One day when the cat was well over thirteen years old, he went out one night but never came back the next morning. The dog was despondent and quickly deteriorated in health. We lost her several months later.

Soon all we had was Alex, my parrot.

That didn’t last.

The kids talked us into a kitten. Each. The usual promises of responsibility for caring for them were made, dismissed, and eventually caved into after which the follow through was somewhat lacking. Then, of course came the inevitable replacement for Jazz, the dog we lost.

And yes, the same promises were made again and promptly forgotten at the first taste of inconvenience.

Now that you’ve taught the cat to come when you call, what are you going to do?

I finished fencing in the yard today so that the dog can run without being on a chain. So much for the “inexpensive” dog from the animal shelter. In the meantime, the parrot calls for a snack, at which time the cats cluster around his cage as if he’s offering, not asking. As if that weren’t enough, the parrot calls my son’s cat mimicking my son’s voice.

The journey to the dark side is complete. The inmates are now officially running the zoo.

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