Anyone who has had a childhood pet in their life knows how much of a mark they leave on your heart and your life. They become part of the family, and losing them is no less painful than losing any other loved one. I, like many others, grew up with a childhood pet. I, also like many others, would say that I grew up with the best childhood pet. My dog, Diddy, was one of my best friends for my entire childhood, leaving a legacy in my family that will never fade. Having a pet is an experience like no other, and I am here to tell you why.
Firstly, the moment you bring your pet home you have instantly gained a best friend. That pet - dog, cat, parrot - will love you unconditionally from that moment forward. I can attest that every time I was sitting in my room sad or angry I would hear the pitter patter of my dog walking down the hall and look down to see her nose peering in the door, her eyes looking up apologetically. She would sit by my side letting me pet her until I felt better. No matter how many times I accidentally stepped on her foot, or wouldn't give her any of the food I was cooking, she loved me anyway. That unconditional love and reliance is so pure and has the ability to shape a childhood for the better.
Pets are great listeners. I don't care how stupid I looked doing it, I had some of my best conversations with my dog. I could tell her anything. My embarrassing moments, my corny jokes, my insecurities. Talking to a pet is one of the most calming things you can do, because they just sit there patiently listening, looking at you as if you're speaking the most important words ever spoken. They don't judge. They don't interrupt. They just listen.
Finally, almost no one could make me laugh as much as my dog. Whether it was her incessant nudging of my arm with her nose, so that I would keep petting her, or the way she laid under the table during dinner, covering her eyes and waiting for us to drop food, because if she couldn't see us, we couldn't see her. Whether it was the way she jumped up and down like crazy waiting for a treat every time she successfully went to the bathroom, or how she somehow knew how to open the screen door with her nose to leave, but somehow hadn't figured out how to close it. That dog could make me laugh like no other.
Without my pet, my childhood simply would not have been the same. She was my best friend, my cuddle buddy, my own personal comedian. My pet, like many others', made my childhood what it was, and I wouldn't trade her for the world.