We have officially reached the Elmhurst city limit for the number pets allowed within a single-family dwelling. The addition of our fourth and final rescue has caused some of our friends to screw their faces up in horror, barely able to disguise their contempt.
“Why would you want a kitten?” one friend asked. “Do you know how long cats live? How will you travel after your kids go to college?”
Some people take our decision very personally.
“I am not getting a cat! No way!” another said defensively, as if we had suggested he do the same.
Some just looked stunned, unable to decide if we are mentally sound enough to care for pets, let alone children.
I realize there are people who will see pets in terms of a long list of intrusions upon their lives. Others see things differently.
“My mom thought I was crazy for adding a cat to our house with two dogs," my neighbor shared with me recently. "Why would you want to do that when you are already so busy?"
But I don’t see it that way, I told her. It doesn’t feel like work. My pets just bring me so much joy.
It’s raining cats and dogs in our house but we don’t see the risk of flooding, only how it will nurture our "garden."
With five people, two dogs and two cats, our house may be filled with endless demands for walks, feedings, cleaning and training—but everyone has a hobby, right?
Top Ten Reasons We Let it Rain Cats And Dogs in the Gough House.
10. There is always someone to cuddle when everyone else is mad at you.
9. It is fun to watch your children care for multiple pets at once. It’s a sneak preview into their life as a parent.
8. They eat all your food, don’t clean up after they play and drive you nuts when they fight (Oh, wait, that's the kids) but there’s still no one I’d rather spend time with.
7. Nothing gives hope for a peaceful world like a group of cats and dogs lounging together in a ray of afternoon sunshine on a wooden floor.
6. They teach us that no matter how jealous you are of your siblings, they are the ones who teach you survival.
5. They fill the void that your babies leave when they move out or are just too busy with their friends, and they don't hog the remote, or require midnight feedings or a college savings plan.
4. It is curiously satisfying to watch an innocent, tiny kitten hold court to three older pets by killing a fly with a well-timed, split-second swat.
3. It reminds us that no matter how much trauma you’ve suffered on the streets, healing is possible when shared with the group.
2. With 600 channels of beer buddy movies, our four pets tell the best tales. There’s always a story unfolding.
And the No. 1 reason we fill our family home with pets is:
1. They never talk back, tell you you’re mean or ask you if they can drive.