Growing Up Without Pets
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A Letter To Pet-Owners From Someone Who Has Never Had A Pet

Seriously, sometimes, you guys confuse me.

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A Letter To Pet-Owners From Someone Who Has Never Had A Pet
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Alright, I'm going to start this by putting something out there. I don't hate animals. I really, really don't, I promise. I think they're cute and fun and I always smile at kittens and I'll always politely ask you what your parrot's name is. But the thing is, I just don't really get pets, and I definitely don't understand pet owners.

For my entire life, I've never had a pet. My mom used to joke that my brother and I could hardly clean up after ourselves, so there was no way we could take care of a pet on top of that. I once won a goldfish from the Fourth of July carnival, but it only lasted three days. Poor thing never even got a name, although I do remember standing in a CVS, wondering how there could possibly be this many types of fish food. Still, to this day, I have no idea what fish even eat.

Because I've never had a pet and never grew up around animals, I just don't understand the bond pet owners have with animals. If somebody is walking their dog past my friend group, everyone else will stop to pet it, but I'll usually hang towards the back. If the dog decides to come over to me then great! I'll lean down and scratch its ears and coo at it a bit. If it doesn't … I'm not too upset. I see a lot of dogs, and not stopping to pet every single one doesn't bother me much. Animals just don't draw me in that much. Now, if I see a cute kid running around, that's a different story. But for some reason I've never been able to develop a pet-owner mindset.

I promise I'm not heartless. I really do love to pet and play with and love animals. But is it my biggest ambition to own three cats after college? Not really. Do I have to pop into every pet store I pass to look at all the turtles? Definitely not. Do I want to look at hundreds of photos of your brand new baby bunny? … Also no. I'm sorry.

Pet-owners, I just don't understand you. You're great people but I honestly don't understand how one person can talk about their snake that much. It's a snake! I don't understand how people make blankets out of photos of their dogs or spend an entire day cuddling their cat. You guys are like a whole different species from me. You live in this world where you can all understand and relate to each other, bonding over your tiny non-human friends that live in your house. You all can talk for ages about things I know literally nothing about, and about feelings that I'll never understand.

But, pet-owners, I admire you for that too. You just have even more love to give out, and more people to bond with over it. I'm jealous of you, pet-owners. You guys have something I've never had, with animals that I've barely interacted with. You put in time and love and you get a companion in return. It's endearing, and when I think about it that way, I can totally understand why you do all the crazy things you do.

So maybe I like humans a little more. Either way, it's great to watch your faces light up when you come home to your pet.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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