Life with a Pet

Gia and Piper

Part 1: A creative prompt about describing life with pets. The response could be in any media and I chose to do it in writing.  Well, not a choice. More of an experience. A stream of consciousness that spent its time capturing feelings and random impressions that were then wrestled and compressed and perhaps best expressed in words. Because collage just wasn’t doing it.

Part 2:  The response.

Life with pets

Messy.  Like life. Warm-bodied cuddlebugs or life-savers squeezed in to that impossibly small spot right beside you on the couch or on the street on a cool night.

Eyes connected to a heart that look into eyes connected to a heart.

A dog as a pet is reason and a demand to get out into the world and talk to other pets and other people.  I might not do that otherwise.  I might just do what’s easy and stay home. I might stay home and come to believe that the news is what my street and my neighbourhood and my city and my country and the world are all about.  I might stay home and not notice my world getting small and scary or how tight I’m holding myself.

Life with pets.

Messy. Like Life.

Maybe they add perspective. About taking care of this moment that leads to the next moment, and over time it becomes clear that life is simply living and adjusting to the weather and everything else. Seeing how there aren’t bad weather days or good weather days except by how we judge it, and what there is is simply and non acceptance and unpreparedness for the reality of what the weather is and does, and oh yes, inappropriate dress to go out and through it.

Life with pets.

Messy.  Like life.

Throwing balls, retrieving balls and buying poop bags and pet food in bulk.

Litter, blankets, cage things.

Dirty paws and dirty towels and barf spots on the carpets. Wondering and worrying what’s in their food.

Training them is training me.

Less selfish maybe. The weather is not going to change just because I want it to.

Pets teach.

Pets teach about being in relationship. Being in a good relationship with a pet is about Patience. Listening. Sensing. Adjusting. Pets adjust. I adjust. I can learn. I am learning. Telepathic talks. Not a child, but a pet. Not a pet, a living being. A responsibility. I’m listening.

Even the birds talk back now and again.

Looking at tree trunks and people slouching by faces hidden in hoodies.

What’s the pee-mail have to say today?

Walking and walking and walking. Going for car rides and curling up on a couch and singing along with the howls.  Heartbeat rhythms matching.  Oh, and Telepathic Talks.  Definite connectedness.

Life with pets.

Messy. Like life.


Trips to the groomer and the beach and the vet.  Toy box full of pet toys. Special blankets and beds.

And then it’s time for them to go.

One day you have that dog or cat or lizard or ferret or horse or pig or bird or mouse, or snake — one moment you have that pet and then the next moment, you don’t. That pet   goes to The Rainbow Bridge, or to nowhere we can understand but that always feels like Way. Too. Soon.

I won’t talk about the cost in money or tears or rips and shreds to the heart muscle. Can I do it again?

Living with a pet is all of life crammed into a best-before date programmed into the DNA of that living being we call pet. There is pain without suffering.  I can do this. I am doing it.

Life with a pet?

It gets messy. It gets crazy happy and fun. And scary and sad.

Like life.


About FS

Toronto, Canada. Writing about slices of life, the moments and minor details of which come into awareness or out of imagination and the spaces inbetween.
This entry was posted in animals, dogs, Life, pets. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Life with a Pet

  1. scimmia says:

    and what about life without pets. Less messy, but less full, less happy… just less.

  2. Maxine says:

    Pee-mail. Love it!
    You are such a great writer. I am haunted by ‘eyes connected to heart’–I can feel it.
    Thank you for writing. Thank you for sharing.

  3. tinababab says:

    This is so uplifting ….and heartbreaking all at once. Brilliant. Hugs.

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