Duendesday: Pet Care

{life with a curious and crazy 12 yr old}

D has been dying for a bunny or another dog or even a gerbil these days but I have to tell you, if you’ve seen her room lately, you would not even consider losing an animal to that mess! ha! On one hand, yes, it is good for her to have her space and room clean and I could do it, or force her, or withold good things but all that seems a bit rough to me. I need her to want to take care of it – and as long as it isn’t a mold or disgusting hazard, I let her be responsible for it. We get on her about her clothing pile, and when all of things that belong in a particular container are lying right next to said empty container (like all of the stuffies next to the stuffy basket, or the folded clothes next to the empty drawer, etc) but mostly she’s on her own. And that’s the biggest takeaway – if she wanted a bunny or something-or-other, she would have to have a clean healthy space for them: in effect, if she wants one, she’s the one preventing her from having one.

We tried fish a few years ago – (yes, I almost got her a bunny when the pandemic hit – I was ready to pay the lady for a sweet little black bunny when I realized that was crazy talk and got the family to all chip in and get her a big tank with a castle and rainbow plants and a bunch of glo fish – which all promptly died – because they don’t tell you that you have to acclimate the tank either with chemicals or dead fish, and then the next batch died, and the next, so we got a betta who lived for a year or so, and then died – she cried every time, so we got rid of the fish tank) which was a disaster.

When we first moved to the house, we got a pup (mostly for J but really for all of us) and he’s the best dog in the world (I kid you not). And then we got the babe a kitten – who was the best kitten in the world but she really loved to go outside. Eventually we couldn’t hold her back, she was determined, so we put a collar on her and let her come and go as she pleased. One day she didn’t return. We were all broken-hearted. She really was the best cat.

But we got another anyway – the kid was so sad, we went local and got a little boy cat from a mixed litter. He was crazy and now he’s neurotic. Most people don’t even know we have a cat because if he even catches a whiff of another human he’s hidden somewhere deep upstairs for hours and hours until they go away – if they stay the night, he sneaks down in the dark and takes care of himself and then stashes himself away again. A couple of years ago D decided the whole family needed matching Solstice pajamas (including the cat & dog) so I complied because it’s weird and funny. I just found the cat’s pajamas (my favorite saying ever) in a buried corner of my closet after 2 years, he maybe had them on for an hour – we were seriously considering that maybe he ate them.

Today, they both (the cat & dog) are off to their yearly vet check up (it’s actually the first for the cat because, well, he’s a cat which sort of means ‘expendable’ to me, yeah – I said that). She has been giving them lots of love all week so that they 1) don’t suspect a thing, and 2) so they aren’t scared when they go. Though she is slightly obsessed with just being the one to leash the dog and stuff the cat into the carrier, too. It’s a fine line between love and torture, apparently. D likes to dress the pets, dance with the pets, marry the pets, chase the pets, ‘train’ the pets, and love them hard – a little too hard sometimes. These poor pets, they take it I think because they know it’s love. Weird, weird kid love.

(all pics taken by DBR)

Published by Rachael M Rollson

creative life-learner

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