Adventures in Fur-tility: Pets as practice for children?

(Alternate post title? What to expect when you’re deflecting.)

Stop me if you’ve heard this one…

At the dog park | biologicalclockie.com

Courtesy of my new webcomic – click to check it out!

I’m not going to ask for a show of hands, but I have a feeling plenty of us have been on the receiving end of this sort of comment.  After all, there are people who think any plans for your uterus are fair game for conversation.  (It’s called uterUS because we’re all in this together. As a society. Or something.)  And obviously any and all choices you make in life are geared toward your eventual role as parent.  (Ladies and their universal desire for babies, am I right?)

When you put those two together, the only conclusion is that you adopted a pet to practice your nurturing skills.  Sort of a placeholder until you can fulfill your biological destiny – keep a plant and a pet alive, and then you’re obviously ready for parenthood.

I’m often at a loss regarding how to respond to this sort of nonsense. (Or I think of the perfect Jerk Store comeback later, a la George Constanza.) A withering stare is always appropriate.  I’d also vote for a blunt and snarky comment about how rude this whole topic is.  Or perhaps one of these?

  • “You’re right.  Having a pet really has prepared me for parenthood.  If crate and clicker training worked for Spike, it will work for a baby.”
  • “Not only am I getting some practice in, I also have a reliable vet and groomer already lined up for my baby.”
  • “Oh, crap.  I think I did this backwards. I had a kid for a few years as practice for my pet, but I gave her up when I got the kitten. Wonder what happened to her.”
  • “So many good lessons.  If my kid cries when I leave the room, I’ll just toss him a Kong filled with peanut butter to distract him.”
  • “I figure I should practice it all – so once Fluffy turns 18 and can finally move out, then I’ll be ready for kids.”
  • “How dare you!  That’s not a dog. It’s a kid wearing a designer faux fur bodysuit.”

Anyone have a good response to this question? Share yours in the comments!

(Don’t forget to swing by Biological Clockie and check out my new comic!  You can also follow along on Facebook and Twitter.)

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Parenting: You’re doing it wrong

My maiden name is pretty common.  So common, in fact, that I’ve often received emails (both personal and professional) for other ladies with the same name.  I try to handle these graciously – telling the sender that they have the wrong person and suggesting they check that email address again.

Of late, I’ve been receiving email for two different people – one college student and one woman with children. (The latter illustrated by the various websites the woman’s child seems to sign up for.)

The most recent installment in this saga is a doozy.  I received an email from who I assume to be the dad of the college student. I learned the following things: (1) he is writing her papers for her (there was an attachment as proof); (2) he informed her that “paper #3 you will have to write because your class has a mandatory attendance to the MLK convocation and paper #3 is on that”; and (3) he will provide her with highlighted journal articles that he has read when she comes home next time.

I mean… what does one do with an email like that?  Even better, the attached paper was a “think paper” for an education class, in which the “author” claims that she will be able to help shape students to become better model citizens. She/he also notes that she will always take a stand for teaching right from wrong. Um…

Parenting: you’re doing it wrong.

Anyway, I told Tavish about this incident.  In response (and thanks to the recommendation of a friend), Tavish decided to channel his inner Ryan Dogsling:

Tavish Dogsling via wantmorepuppies.com

I could be a meme, right?

Who could argue with that?

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I bet you didn’t think dogs could write headlines. This post will seriously change your mind.

Last night, I was watching TV (a rerun of The Mindy Project, if you must know – seriously, though… how great is The Mindy Project?).  My local news ran a preview during one of the commercial breaks, as is wont to happen.

In the span of thirty seconds, they delivered one of those “X happened – and you won’t believe what happened next!” headlines. So… basically, it felt like I was watching some sort of Upworthy network. (Maybe they just used this handy headline generator?)

Listen, I know that this sort of sensationalized teaser is nothing new.

(Fun fact: I still say “is it peas?” on what seems to be a weekly basis.)

However, cramming two of those similarly constructed headlines into one short preview was more than I could bear.  It was (almost) as bad as the time that I saw this on the Huffington Post:

Journalism! via wantmorepuppies.com

Yeah… that happened.

You can’t put emoticons in your headlines. You just can’t, HuffPo. Get it together.

Anyway… today’s post is inspired by the Judgy Bear stare and epic amounts of shade I directed at my television last night.  In an attempt to make the best of a dumb situation, I present to you… Dogworthy headlines. Just imagine them being delivered to you by Walter Cronkbite, Dan Cather, or Barbara Pawlters:

  • Fido sniffed a fire hydrant – you won’t believe what happened when he tried to pee on it.
  • I used to hate going to the vet. Then I saw this powerful video by a celebrity dog.
  • Some call it bath time. We call it freedom’s worst enemy.
  • This dog’s family named him Rover. Then they found out just how fitting that name was.
  • You will shudder when you see what this Corgi’s person made him wear.
  • A flea bit Fifi on the leg. It ended up changing her life for the better.
  • Peanut thought that finally catching her tail would solve all of her problems. If only she’d known what would really happen.
  • You never thought a cat could inspire a dog. This video will change your mind.

You’re welcome, canine journalists.  I’m totally helping you take it to the next level. Instant click bait. It’s the human equivalent of “squirrel!”

I’m seriously tempted to start using Dogworthy titles on all of my posts, just to see what happens. I’ll try to resist.  If I cave in, I promise to give myself a Judgy Bear Stare in the mirror every now and then.  You have my word.

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#BtC4A: Dogs aren’t perfect… but neither are you

Blog the ChangeI’d be lying to you if I said that I knew what I wanted to write about for this edition of Blog the Change for Animals. However, I recently read a story that supplied the thesis* for today’s post. That thesis?

Don’t be an idiot.

(A secondary thesis? Don’t do things that make me roll my eyes. It makes my eyes hurt. I don’t like it when my eyes hurt.)

So, let’s get to it. The story that inspired today’s post sounds too stupid to be true. Our tale begins with the return of a dog named Misty to a high-kill shelter. Want to guess the reason? I bet you can’t.

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Nic Cage’s Easter advice: Put the bunny idea back in the box

Blog the Change

Okay, users of the Internet… it’s time for some real talk. I know that Easter is right around the corner. Your head is filled with visions of adorable bunnies (or chicks and ducks, depending on what your particular brand of cute catnip is – the post below is applicable to all categories). You’re tempted to bring one home.

I get it. They’re cute. They’re cuddly. They win first prize every single year in the Cutest Way to Eat Lettuce Contest.

via giphy.com

As the proud aunt to several bunny nieces and nephews, I’m not immune to their charms. However, I’m going to give it to you straight. If you’re thinking of bringing home a baby bunny for Easter, stop.

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5 bad jokes to tell your dog

I warn you – the jokes below might make you giggle, but they’ll probably make your dog (and possibly any other people around you) groan. Potential for groaning increases exponentially in relation to the number of times you tell said joke.

However, they might make you giggle every time. That’s what counts, right? Continue reading

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You know you’re a crazy dog lady when…

Sometimes, I almost forget that I’m a crazy dog lady.

Almost.

Then, something happens that reminds me just how nutty I truly am. This past Friday, I received one of those reminders when I took Tavish to a new groomer. We had the first appointment of the day, so I got up early, tossed on a sweater, and loaded Tavish in the car. It was only after the groomer pointed it out that I realized there was a siimilarity between our respective ensembles.

Not Tavish the fox

Tavish the fox

 

That’s right. I inadvertently dressed like my dog. I went out in public that way.

I met new people who surely think I’m not quite right in the head, including Tavish’s new groomer. (Between the outfits and my overly detailed instructions, she probably made some sort of notation in our file.)

Crazy dog lady achievement unlocked. I’ve totally leveled up.

(Oh, and this experience has given me some insight into what the fox says. I think the fox would tell me to be thankful that Tavish is a dog – rather than a child – who doesn’t realize that he should be totally embarrassed to be seen in public with me.)

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Are dogs furry kids?

I (somewhat) recently read a piece from Smithsonian Magazine that posed the following question: Are Dogs Now Just Furry Kids? I figured it would be your typical article about how people spend a lot on their dogs, dress them up, and do crazy things like blog about them.

I was wrong.

Instead, it was all science-y and stuff. Researchers have found that the human-dog bond is in some ways very similar to a parent-child bond.

Now, I’m not one who considers myself a mom to my pups (I don’t really know what word I’d use), but I thought I’d do my own non-scientific analysis as to whether dogs are simply furry children. (Being an English major, my “scientific analysis” is really just an imaginary debate I had in my own head. Just roll with it, okay?)

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The right way to ask people when they plan to have kids

Okay, students. Professor Judge E. Dog is back today with another useful lesson. You may have friends or family members who seem stubbornly unwilling to shout their reproductive plans from the rooftops. When interrogated asked, they give “cute” answers such as “When we’re ready, we’ll let you know” or “I just want more puppies.”

I’m going to let you in on a little secret. There are countless articles out there advising people how to evade your questions and hide this important information. These devious masterminds have a host of skillful dodges at their disposal. What’s a Nosy Parker to do? It’s just not fair. You’re just embracing your inner Mary Worth. Where are the tips about the right way to ask this question? (Here. Those tips are here.) Continue reading

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Do you have to choose between having a dog and having kids?

No.

*declares post completecloses laptop, goes to the kitchen, eats a cookie in celebration of a job well done, eats a second cookie in celebration of how good that first cookie was, reconsiders answer, returns to computer*

Here’s the thing. The answer is really that simple… and yet, it’s not. All at the same time. Allow me to explain.

I don’t believe that “you” (in the broadest sense) have to choose between kids and dogs. I don’t think it’s a zero sum game. At the same time, do “you” (in the narrowest possible sense) have to choose between kids and dogs? I can’t answer that one. However, I have thoughts. Lots of them. Continue reading

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