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That’s Why They Call Me Whiskers

I could have trimmed the clip, but that would have been tragic and a crime to all of you uninitiated.  Old-school SNL was the shizz. Don’t get me started on Celebrity Jeopardy from the 90s either. Thank you Comedy Central for all of the re-runs when I still lived at home.

Cats. Dogs. Cats vs. Dogs. Chance, Shadow, Sassy. The Feline Mystique. Man’s Best Friend. Always a debate. But is it really?

I have always been around animals. I grew up with dogs, my father grew up on a farm, my mom’s family raised Bassets, I started riding at age 5 (that was the earliest anyone would take me), my grandfather bred and raced Thoroughbreds, my mom and her family grew up riding. At the farm that I grew up riding at, my trainer had no fewer than 5 dogs the entire time I knew her, and at our lake house, we frequently hosted (and vice versa) our neighbors’ dogs on our dock. But we never had cats.

My barn had cats: at one time, 38 of them (this number waxed and waned over the years, but we had to count them and literally kennel them up at night–try teaching barn cats to do that!–because of a coyote prowling nearby). The closest I ever came to being really attached to a kitty was “Susie-cat,” a GORGEOUS black and gray tabby with a half tail. She became my kitty because I was the only one she would allow near her (I have a curious ability to make animals feel comforted and un-intimidated. I’m the one they send out to catch the uncatchables). She was a sweet, sweet cat, and a terrific hunter.  And she had the most exquisite eyes.  I have a picture of her, somewhere, and will post it if I ever do find it.  One day, she disappeared, and we have no idea what became of her. She would always return, even after a month or so of not being seen, but this time she didn’t.

But I digress. Cats vs. Dogs.

I planned to get a dog my 2nd year of undergrad. Those plans got pushed to when I graduated; NYC pushed those off until when Alex and I got married; apartment living, unknown schedules, etc have pushed such plans further. I was lucky to constantly be able to get my canine fix at the barn while I lived in VA–there were 10-11 dogs there at any given time.

Alex grew up with 1 dog, and his parents are unlikely to ever get another because no dog will ever be able to measure up to Lucky (unfortunately, the great Lucky died about 6 months before I arrived in Alex’s household, though I believe we would have gotten along as famously as he did with Champ). Further, Alex was not fortunate enough to get a daily dog onslaught as I was at the farm. Alex was in HOG HEAVEN when I would take him to the farm, and he would literally spend a solid 20 mins on either side of watching me ride just petting and loving the furry friends. When I moved to NYC, we would go to the dog parks and watch them play. He literally cannot see a picture of a dog without commenting on it. Boy has problems. When A and I started talking about our future, we started discussing what dogs we would be getting, and in what order, and until then, we have stuffed children that represented our future pets/children.

Alex. Did not. Care. For. Cats. He thought there was a much higher risk of getting a “bad” cat than a “bad” dog. Now moments like these are the rule, not the exception:

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Zoe was given up for adoption at the Anti-Cruelty Society because of allergies (of the human variety). Um, you kept an animal for 5 years and THEN decided you were allergic? Or did you simply meet someone and decide that they were worth more? While neither Alex nor I understand the logic, we are very thankful for the nincompooopery of Zoe’s previous family.

Otherwise, where would we find our nearly endless source of consternation and entertainment? Why else:

*would Alex have to buy earplugs (gun rated) to sleep in because of a constant and hilarious sounding yowling throughout the night?

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*if you sit on his chest and stare thisclose to his face, he will wake up

*yowling is an acceptable response to everything and nothing at the same time.

*never be able to leave glasses out because SOMEONE will attempt to drink from them, get her head stuck, and fling it off in a panic?

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*parkor/free jumping is a very legitimate sport to practice in 600 sq ft of interior space, and the couch is excellent for it, as are the drapes.

*give up a blanket (ahem, my favorite couch blanket) so that SOMEONE can attack IT INSTEAD OF THE BRAND NEW COUCH??blanket2

*the days are meant to be slept away either beneath the bed or atop on your family’s clothes.

*kneading is not just for dough. and it is a pre-snuggle ritual that cannot be trifled with. Messing with kneading will result in dismissal

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*Being picked up is unnecessary. Personal space is invaluable and one must be invited into it. Unless, of course, you are the invader and then you get to decide when and where.

*that cat hair, like dog hair, gets evvverywhere

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*that printers are for perching atop, not using

*that studying is for losers

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*family heirlooms are for sitting atop

*hot stoves are meant to be walked on

*if you can’t feel it, your tail is NOT on fire

*you truly can fall in slow motion and not end up on your feet

*hunger strikes are very really things

*lasers really are mesmerizing

*fake mice need to be taught real lessons.

*litter (and sh!+ are meant to be FLUNG IN THE AIR)

*it is totally acceptable to clean your nails and such on the walls. bonus points if you fling fecal matter before this.

*popping a squat on the corner of your box will likely result in you missing. Make sure that the hind legs are properly positioned.

*would we know that oxiclean is far better than resolve at cleaning up messes?

*water must be filtered and ice cold. Otherwise, your cold, filtered water is fair game.

*cats really do like milk. Ice cream is made out of milk. Cats really like ice cream. They want to see everything else and put their face in it, but ice cream (and chicken, for that matter) is all that actually interests them.

*Jumping from smooth surface to smooth surface really isn’t that smart.

*You can get away with anything if you use a certain look on Alex before and after. (Actually, I already knew this). He is a sucker. And a total Daddy. I am definitely the bad guy.003

Most Importantly:

There is no such thing as a “cat” person or a “dog” person.

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Talk to me, Goose:

Do you have pets? Do you have a pet that you swore up and down you would NEVER get and now, upon having them, you can’t imagine your life without them?

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