It’s remarkable how much something I had been avoiding for so long has improved my life. As a young boy I had a myriad of pets from all sorts of animal kingdoms. I had a cat for a short while, two dogs, ton of fish, a few birds, Gerbils, and even some spiders and beetles.
In general terms I felt that the saddest of the pets were the birds, taking an animal that should be out flying the skies and dropping it in an EXTREMELY small cage. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a bird cage that didn’t look far too small. Just the size of the cage compared to the animal itself was unreal. If there is a hell I imagine it is being a bird inside of a bird cage for your entire life.
It is a terrible practice and I can’t recommend it to anyone anywhere, I’m a bit mortified when I see birds in cages. At least the pet store cages are kind of big. Next saddest tended to be the fish for similar reasons. A tiny meta habitat inside of the human habitat was very weird for me, same could be said about the gerbils. It was the cats and dogs that made sense. I spend the vast majority of my time indoors and so if I feel the area is big enough to make me happy I figure an animal many times smaller than me should be quite pleased.
Likewise they have no predators to deal with, an endless supply of toys to play with, and some suckers to pet them and cuddle them all the time.
During my childhood there were deaths, many events that made me astoundingly sad. When I was living alone and it was just me and my last dog it was something that haunted me. If I could go back in time it is a period of my life I would relive differently and I generally try to not think about it very much. But there is a long period of time before the downward swing of death that is cherished, years of fun moments, (admittedly one sided) conversations, and compassion.
Even if much of the interaction is anthropomorphized, I don’t mind, it is an illusion I’m willing to accept. These are tangible beings that have so many wonderful signs of their emotional state, and to see them rest soundly is a wonderful feeling.
It was those late tragedies that caused me to shun the idea of a new pet. But ironically it appears that these mistakes in my young life are why I try so hard with our new kittens. We did tons of research to make sure they only eat the best cat food possible, a list of ingredients that are likely to show up in a cat’s actual diet. I’ve tried my best to find the little that is least likely to have chemicals but also not be a dust cloud of death and mayhem.
Their toys are all highly rated and safe, nice beds, the best cat tower we could find (that they use often), and they are using vet recommended anti-flea medication alongside getting all their shots and their routine checkups. These two kittens were even fostered together so we adopted them both to make sure they weren’t separated.
Coming home to them is something otherworldly and satisfying. You spend an entire day dealing with the mundane, routine cycles of the same processes that lead to the same results in an endless wheel of stagnation and only simulated progression. In the business world the only people seeing and true improvement are at the top of the tower, everyone else is just resetting the clock every 28-31 days.
But with this I have friends, sort of like little furry children. They get into mischief, play, grow, learn, and I see wonderful advancement. They have become a calendar of sorts, progression of joy and ever greatening brightness. There have been a few scary moments (Artemis got quite sick as a baby) but otherwise it has been unending cuteness and compassion (which is unusual for cats, I’m guessing Artemis will grow out of it but I think Venus might be a lap cat for life).
Someday if I find myself with a big house and a nice yard I just might get a dog. I don’t know however, having never had a cat for long (we gave ours away quite fast, I guess scooping poop was too intense) so for me this is something new, these cats are not competing in a spot of me that is held by another. They also don’t threaten to remind me of my own weakness at a separate point in my life.
I guess that’s all for today. I should close by mentioning my great disappointment in a lamp I bought, it doesn’t work. So I might not have a lamp for this weekend (I really need some light in this place, California doesn’t believe in putting lights on the ceilings of their living rooms, totally archaic state).