Wednesday, August 5, 2009 2:00 PM

The Neighborhood of Super-Spoiled Pets

Not that there's anything wrong with that...

Today, as J. was making our lunch, I caught him passing out cheese bits to our three cats. This is a common occurrence here, and I do it, too. Goldie was reluctant to accept his treat, so I had to step in and offer it to Little Girl, which of course made Goldie accept it back in a flash. So now Girlie had to have another piece...this is also a common scenario, where we humans coax the cats to take our largesse, lest they suffer some sort of permanent trauma from being left out of the mix. Naturally, we enjoy it, too. I thought to myself that our pets are not only spoiled, but super-spoiled. We're in good company, though, as our neighbors are also prone to such behavior.

Our next-door neighbor, Mr. S., has an old dog, H. This dog has various health problems and is very spoiled. Whenever Mr. S. and his wife, Ms. R., have company over to their house, H. will bark and bark in the middle of the living room until he gets his fill of cookies. Only then will he go into his crate and lie down quietly, as he knows that his owners are desperate to get him to shut up and won't just put him outside when they have guests! Also, H. needs to go out much more often than he used to, or he makes "mistakes" in the house. Mr. S. has been getting up at all hours of the night to take him out, as he tells J., in only his "tighty whities". J. has told him if he sees that, he's calling the cops. Of course, we're sleeping soundly at these wee hours, since we don't have such worries!

Miss P. recently told us how one of her goats, Sylvie, has been complaining loudly of late, perhaps because of bugs, perhaps the heat, perhaps other reasons. So, Miss P. has been tromping out to the goatie shed with various treats in order to placate the poor baby. A couple of days ago, Miss P. informed us that she had pinpointed the problem: Sylvie bleats and blahhs when one of the other goats jumps up on "her" wooden platform inside the shed (pictured are Peaches and Pepper, the two main offenders). That was the whole problem! We'll ask Miss P. tomorrow if she's been dutifully shooing the other goats off of this box so that Sylvie's delicate psyche won't be permanently damaged. Bad karma in the goatie barn!

If you recognize yourself in any of these scenarios, don't be embarrassed. It only shows that you have a good heart and love your pets as much as if they were your children. Not only do they really deserve it, but as an added bonus they can't sign you into a nursing home later! So, keep up the good work, your pets are counting on you!

Movie of the Week: Tell No One, a film by Guillaume Canet and starring Francois Cluzet and Kristin Scott-Thomas. Very suspenseful, edge of your seat fare, based on a book by Harlan Coben (which I just recently read). Another French vehicle for Scott-Thomas, and, as usual, she shines. She must not be getting many juicy offers from Hollywood. Well, the French really do it better, anyway, n'est pas?
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Amanda has worked with animals for many years and has always had cats in her life. She lives in Massachusetts with her husband and two excellent cats.
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