Loss, or When There Is No Doctrine

“I just don’t want anyone else to tell me what to believe,” my friend said with firmness. We were discussing religion. She knows I identify as Mormon, and she has some faraway Mormon relatives. She knew them when she and they were teens, a good twenty years ago. Religion, time and physical distance added them …

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Dog Tale

By Karen Austin

Photo by Karen D. Austin

“Please, Mom. I promise that I’ll feed the dog, walk the dog, bath the dog. Please!”

For the first ten years of my marriage, I stood firm in my “No Dogs Allowed” policy, knowing that the lion’s share of the work would go to me.  My husband (his comment is here)actually cried, explaining that if he knew that I never wanted a dog, he would have “serious reservations” about marrying me.

I knew that he came from a family that loved dogs, but really?

Then I had a seven-year-old son and a four-year-old daughter dogpiling me for a pet.

I relented.

We adopted Pascha, a Golden Retriever-Chow mix that a co-worker was trying to place.  The dog primarily lived in the walk out basement and the fenced back yard (a half acre).  I didn’t really deal with her much.

But four years later she died from a urinary tract infection that crawled up to her kidneys. I felt complicit in her demise because I rarely did more than throw food at her.  I didn’t really want another dog. However, my daughter, who was ten at the time, grieved mightily.  Combining that with my guilt over neglecting Pascha, and I relented. You can click to read more about the setting up a dog franchise business.

“But this is our last dog!” I insisted.

So now we have Bolt, who was a rescued from a young man who grossly neglected him. We think he’s an Indian Spitz.

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For the Love of Dogs

By Terresa Wellborn

Bark much? Yes. For ten years I resisted getting a dog like my kids resist chores: vehemently. Then one day I caved. Our once gorgeous herringbone tiled floor became a minefield of dog hair. Everywhere. Nothing was safe… my fridge fruit drawer, my pillow, my favorite socks. Our dog, Waffle, is a black and white …

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Seasons: To Get (or Not Get) a Pet

By Rosalyn Eves

and dog toys for themI have something to confess that might be heresy.

I’m not a dog person.

While I’ve met several very amiable dogs, none of them have inspired in me the intense need that seeing a fat baby did (still does–but don’t tell my husband). Admittedly, puppies come close. I might even be temped if I didn’t know they got bigger.

Some of them even scare me. I still, seeing a large and strange dog while I’m out walking, have been known to cross to the far side of the road. My mom thinks some of this is due to the fact that my first encounter with a big dog was a Saint Bernard who, when I was 18 months old, bowled me over, stood on me, and licked my face. I think it might be due to the time in fifth grade when a stray dog got onto the playground at school and attacked another little girl, biting her on the head and face. (I know this is a rare incident, but it means I’m wary around strange dogs).

My not being a dog person hasn’t been much of an issue till now in my life: for the first part of our married life, we lived in rented spaces or other people’s houses (hi, mom and dad!). Even after we bought our own home, our kids were still very small. But now we’ve entered the stage of life where my kids are desperate for a pet–and not just any pet. They want a dog.

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Becoming Cat People

By Sandra Clark

A two weeks ago I stood for the first time in the pet aisle of the grocery store, critically weighing the options in kitten chow, blundering exactly how I had gotten to that point. Up until an hour before, I had never before considered all the many options in kitten chow: wet, dry, bag size, flavors, and brands; let alone having a cat to feed it to.

That morning we had gone as a family to the farmer’s market and the library, and came home with two kittens.  Going out I anticipated picking up some tomatoes, okra and a few books; new pets, not so much. Yet, somehow passing by the shelter, turned into “well, let’s just go look at them.” It was a perfect storm, right inside the door was a fuzzy eight week old orange kitten, litter box trained: my son’s birthday wish made flesh. Oh, and on sale. Today only, all cat adoptions half price. That’s how we got talked into the other cat, another eight week old orphan with black and white markings. It was a very happy early birthday present to my son.

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By Melissa Young

Our little pet rabbit died today.

It’s been a tough afternoon, and all of the post ideas I had floating around in my mind seem flat and unimportant. Ironic, because to most people the death of a pet sounds flat and unimportant.

But here in the four walls of our universe, it’s our own small tragedy. We got him for Christmas, so we’ve had him for almost eight months. We watched him grow from a tiny fluff ball into a big fluff ball. We loved it when he did a “binky”—a random, springy jump that is a rabbit expression of joy.

Last night he was fine. This morning he was sick. This afternoon he died.

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