For as long as I can remember, I've been obsessed with animals. Every time someone asks what my favorite animal is, I'm like, "Well, I really like giraffes, pandas, manatees, horses..." because honestly, how could you possibly choose just one to be your favorite? Sadly, keeping a panda as a pet isn't common (or legal), so I've fallen in love with my dogs and cats. And when I say in love, I mean these critters have taken over my entire being. I'm sure my fellow pet owners can relate, as well. Here's 12 things all us pet owners know far too well.
1. Your pet deserves three-quarters of your bed.
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I still have a twin bed at home, so sleeping with my cat is a nightmare. She loves sleeping in the middle of my bed, forcing me to sleep (live) on the edge, because who would disturb such a magnificent, sleeping angel?
2. You'll never have leftovers.
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I know, feeding my dogs human food is bad for them and makes them fat, blah blah blah. We all do it. You can't tell me you can happily sit at the table eating chicken and not give into those puppy eyes, begging for food because clearly, your dog has never been fed in his life, or he'll at least pretend you've never fed him.
3. You used to blame your mom for not having matching socks, but now you know who the real culprit is.
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Dogs are really quite gross and love the taste of your sweaty gym socks. No matter how far out of reach you think you've put your favorite fluffy socks, your dog will show an admirable dedication to finding those socks and chewing every last thread.
4. Your pets have more nicknames than you think is normal.
This is how Mack got the nickname Mack Attack when he was a puppy.
My pets' names are Meg (Meggie, Meggie Moo, Flump), Mack (Mackie, Mackie Moo, Mack Attack), Cash (Cashie), Daisy (Daisy May, Daisy Frog, Dais) and Lilly (Lills or Little Psycho). Sometimes I forgot they have normal names.
5. You wake up when your dog wakes up.
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If you sleep with your dog, you already know how this goes down. You look at your phone and see it's only 8 a.m., so why are you up right now? Then your dog starts making his rounds again, begins jumping, licking and barking until you let him out to use the bathroom. Is sleeping with your best friend really worth this annoying morning routine?
Of course! Duh.
6. Certain words must be used with caution.
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In my house, if we don't want my dogs to scare the shit out of the mailman, we yell "Squirrel!" and they run straight into the yard and bark at the non-existing squirrel. But if we were to yell that while walking them, we'd have a problem. Some words can't ever be said, end of story. Until my dogs figure out how to spell, we'll continue spelling out W-A-L-K.
Any signs of a leash in a human's hands near a door causes absolute pandemonium.
7. You talk about your pets as if they're your children.
If you didn't post pictures of your puppy graduating from puppy training classes, then did your puppy even graduate? Every day you have a new story about something cute your dog did or how your cat managed to piss off three dogs this time.
8. Sometimes you feel like your pet knows what it's looking at.
I'm going to go ahead and say that I avoid getting naked in front of my cats because sometimes, I swear she knows what she's looking at. Either she has to leave the room, or turn around because I will not be mocked by an elderly cat.
9. Your pets can literally smell your betrayal.
Every time I come back from sleeping over at my friend's house, I apologize to my cat for being gone so long and smelling like other cats. I swear there's nothing serious going on, Daisy. It was just one night. I can't keep apologizing to my dogs, though. They've just accepted that my boyfriend's dog will always be my dog on the side.
10. College is empty without your pets running around everywhere.
The idiots that keep life interesting.
When I'm home alone, I'm never actually alone. My cat, Daisy (who is literally the OG cat in my family and doesn't look a day over 18), is always by my side and my dogs usually want a little fussing. But even if I'm not interacting with them, I can still hear their name tags clattering on their collars and their nails prancing across the kitchen.
11. You can't come to terms with the fact that as you're getting older, so are your pets.
Eighteen has never looked so good on a cat.
The majority of my pets I got when I was still a kid living in Manchester, England. I moved here in 2009 and I have very big dogs that don't live as long as little ones, unfortunately. My cat is closer to my age than my little brother, which I think is awesome, but unsettling sometimes. I like to ignore the white hairs on their backs. I think of them as only being there to make them look more dignified.
12. When the time comes to say goodbye, you'll realize how in love with them you are.
Thankfully, I've only ever had to put one pet down so far. I was probably 8 or 9 years old, and Tess, my dog, was around 13, with bone cancer in her legs that was causing too much pain for her to walk. That was the worst day of my childhood and to this day, I've only had a few days worse than that. However, I think we need things like this to happen to appreciate all of the mismatched socks, chewed up shoes and ruined carpets.
(This article is dedicated to my childhood dog, Tessie. I miss you so much, dude.)
Pets are frickin' magical things. They can be used as service animals and stress relievers. They make good pillows (if you feed them enough human food). They're just so many advantages to owning a pet. So next time someone tells you they hate dogs or cats, walk away and don't waste your breath. You don't need that kind of negativity in your life. Your pets will love you no matter what you look like, what car you drive or what job you have. Just love them with the same unconditional love in return.