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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-04-2007, 08:31 PM   #41
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

Okay, I immediately have to take it back. Costco sent out recall notices for their canned kirkland dog food, its got melamine in it. Just took back the two cases we bought a few days ago. They're offering full refunds even for partially used cases.

On the original topic, I'm not sure what the hell we're going to do when our dogs and cats pass. We've got three dogs all getting towards 10 and three cats all over 14. All almost as close to us as a child.

Which means they're all going to go within a few years of each other and while Gabe is still a small boy.

Which means he and I both have a lot of hard lessons and hard decisions and experiences coming to us.

I'm not looking forward to any of it. I'm sure its going to be six of the worst days of my life. And his too.
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-04-2007, 08:44 PM   #42
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
I'm not looking forward to any of it. I'm sure its going to be six of the worst days of my life. And his too.
Wish I could reassure you to the contrary, but I can't.

If I had a little one like Gabe (which I once did, same name) in that situation I'd consider quietly having the failing ones put down mercifully over the last couple of years while he was off at camp or something. The one or two really special ones (and I know they're all special) who died naturally at home would be more than enough to pass along lessons in life's realities, but that many dying year after year could generate a great deal of ungrounded fear about life's fragility.

Just some unpleasant options to think about down the road.

On a more upbeat note, pets bring so much to a kid's upbringing. I remember to this day being 8 years old and upset about something or other and Frisky was the only one in the entire universe who understood and listened to me. Worth the eventual loss (had him from kindergarten through sophomore year of college).
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-04-2007, 09:13 PM   #43
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

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Originally Posted by Rich_in_Tampa
If I had a little one like Gabe (which I once did, same name) in that situation I'd consider quietly having the failing ones put down mercifully over the last couple of years while he was off at camp or something. .
I'm sure the "truth at all times" proponents will cry out in disgust, but I think Rich has offered a suggestion that's worth careful consideration. I know strongly suspect now that my Dad had one of our beloved collies put to sleep one year while we were away on vacation and the dog was being boarded at a kennel (I don't know who he had do it or how--never asked him, and did not seem worth making him relive it). I watched him cry along with the rest of us years before that when our family dog had died, and I know having the dog put to sleep must have been terribly hard on him, especially knowing the scene that awaited us after our vacation ended, and bearing the emotional burden himself of having the dog put down. But, it was easier on us kids than the alternative would have been.

True, death is just part of living. But we'll all see enough of it in our lives. It would be great save our kids from at least some of the trauma if a ripple of pet deaths seems likely.
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-04-2007, 09:19 PM   #44
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

Eh, when I was a kid my dad put down the family cat and told me he had "gone off to a farm because our new house didnt have a big enough yard for him".

For about the next 6 years I constantly wanted to know when we could go visit and why we couldnt get him back from "the farm" since we moved again and had a larger yard.

Had he told me right off the bat that he simply had the cat killed because my stepmother didnt like it, I could have gotten along to disliking her a good year or so ahead of schedule.

But Rich, your point about the persistence and volume of emotional injury is well taken. I need to find a way to strike a balance between truthfulness and impact on his little soul.

The very minute I figure out how to do it for myself.
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-05-2007, 11:42 AM   #45
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

We have a strong bond with our five cats, but I would always choose saving a child over any animal. I have no idea how much we have spent on our five cats and don't really want to know the amount. I have mixed emotions though. I say that if I could find them home where they would be treated as well as they are at our home, I would get let them go. If push came to shove, I don't know if I really could. I just don't know how I have arrived at this stage of my life, retired, children grown and ready to travel, with five cats. They are 3-5 years old and could very well outlive us even! I worry about what would happen to them if they do. I recently went away for a little over a week and my DH was home with them. One of our cats, Savannah, was a stray and has a strong preference for me. She needed so much love and attention for the first few days after I came home and I really felt guilty for leaving her for so long. She shies away from DH, although she will let him pet her for a second if I am right there with her. She has to go and clean herself right away though! We think that she must have been abused by a male before she came to us.

We had a dog, Susie, that lived for 17 years. She had to be put to sleep after she had a stroke. My DH took her to the vet and stayed with her. I am crying just remembering it. I swore that we would not have any more pets. Again, I still can't figure how we ended up with 5 cats!
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-05-2007, 11:58 AM   #46
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

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Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
Eh, when I was a kid my dad put down the family cat and told me he had "gone off to a farm because our new house didnt have a big enough yard for him".
Well, you know how you feel since you didn't get to say goodbye.

How would Gabe feel if he didn't get to say goodbye?

I think that if a kid doesn't get to experience a fairly benign (no offense intended) introduction to death then it'd be that much harder during experiences that aren't under anyone's control. And if a kid isn't around death as a kid then it certainly won't be easier when they're older and having to make the same decisions as adults-- maybe with our grandchildren.

Kids grew up around death for thousands of years. It's only since we've all moved off the farms (or away from buying the food to make dinner while it's still squawking) that we've decided to "shield" our kids from death. So it's nothing that a kid can't learn to handle... unless a well-meaning adult doesn't give them a chance.

And, yes, we've buried a full menagerie under one of our mango trees.
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-05-2007, 12:05 PM   #47
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
Well, you know how you feel since you didn't get to say goodbye.

How would Gabe feel if he didn't get to say goodbye?

I think that if a kid doesn't get to experience a fairly benign (no offense intended) introduction to death then it'd be that much harder during experiences that aren't under anyone's control. And if a kid isn't around death as a kid then it certainly won't be easier when they're older and having to make the same decisions as adults-- maybe with our grandchildren.

Kids grew up around death for thousands of years. It's only since we've all moved off the farms (or away from buying the food to make dinner while it's still squawking) that we've decided to "shield" our kids from death. So it's nothing that a kid can't learn to handle... unless a well-meaning adult doesn't give them a chance.

And, yes, we've buried a full menagerie under one of our mango trees.
Yup, I don't have room for may more bodies in the backyard.

But I think Rich's point about shielding Gabe was because of the sheer number of losses that are likely to occur in a short period - it's good to learn about the reality of death, but that volume might give him a false impression - "pets always die." ?
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-05-2007, 12:18 PM   #48
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

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"pets always die." ?
Sounds like a harsh life truth to me... and one that many people, let alone 20-somethings or new parents, would do well to consider before they pick that cute puppy up out of the petshop window. Heck, just the few pages in this thread have almost talked Sam out of pet ownership, and I'm not eager to repeat the experience.

I'm not condemning 20-somethings or new parents, unless they're like the person I overheard at the Humane Society dropping off their dog because its coat didn't match the new upholstery in their living room.
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-05-2007, 12:26 PM   #49
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

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Originally Posted by Nords
think that if a kid doesn't get to experience a fairly benign (no offense intended) introduction to death then it'd be that much harder during experiences that aren't under anyone's control. And if a kid isn't around death as a kid then it certainly won't be easier when they're older and having to make the same decisions as adults-- maybe with our grandchildren.
I understand and respect that perspective, Nords. My sense was that he could well learn those lessons by fully experiencing the death of one or two pets. One a year for six years? Not so sure whether the ups outweigh the downs, especially if he is younger than, say 12 or 13.

Ain't no expert, just some observations. Each family will decide what's best. I do know how it felt to me as a 58 year old (most recent one) -- hurt so bad it was almost enough to convince me not to get another dog. Almost .
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-06-2007, 12:00 PM   #50
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheryl
Yup, I don't have room for may more bodies in the backyard.
This is why its good that we had a boy and not a girl. I didnt have enough room at the old house for all the bodies...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
I think that if a kid doesn't get to experience a fairly benign (no offense intended) introduction to death then it'd be that much harder during experiences that aren't under anyone's control.
Yep, his favorite toy in the world, grampa, is going to be 75 in a couple of weeks...I hope the old codger lives to see Gabe graduate from medical school, but thats a longshot.

I'll figure it all out as we go along. Hopefully circumstances will help in some shape or form. Teddy's his favorite and the feelings mutual...perhaps he'll hang in there for a long time and give him someone to hold onto through the tough times...besides mom and dad.
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-06-2007, 01:40 PM   #51
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

I stopped dating one girl because she was allergic to my cats (and other things). The DW is allergic to cats but she gets shots to help her with it.
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-06-2007, 02:53 PM   #52
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

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Originally Posted by bssc
The DW is allergic to cats but she gets shots to help her with it.
To me this is weird. If you had allergic children, would you get them shots rather than remove the source of the allergin?

I believe this is a misplacement of priorities. One son got rid of a wife in part at least becaue he is allergic to cats and she wouldn't get rid of hers. I cheered his decision, although it cost him heavy bucks.

IMO, no matter how much we depend on pets, humans come first. (and for me, this includes non-related humans as in the burning building test above).

If I get reincarnated I'll try to remember this as a question for anyone I am considering for childcare, or for letting my kid do a sleepover with-"In case of fire, do you save the kids or pets first?"

Ha
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-06-2007, 03:06 PM   #53
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

Quote:
Originally Posted by HaHa
IMO, no matter how much we depend on pets, humans come first. (and for me, this includes non-related humans as in the burning building test above).

If I get reincarnated I'll try to remember this as a question for anyone I am considering for childcare, or for letting my kid do a sleepover with-"In case of fire, do you save the kids or pets first?"
I suspect those of us who are "pet-first" probably do not have alot
of children sleeping over, do not see running a child-care operation
as a career, and do not have children of our own, so this is really a
self-correcting problem.
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-06-2007, 03:14 PM   #54
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

Good topic.

On occasion DW has commented that our dog (Chocolate Lab see left) and rescue cat communicate with her better than I do. She's probably correct because I hate to hear this: "We need to talk"...as I usually come out on the short end of that conversation.

Our pets are not exactly like family members, but they are very important to our lives.
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-06-2007, 04:22 PM   #55
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

Quote:
Originally Posted by HaHa
To me this is weird. If you had allergic children, would you get them shots rather than remove the source of the allergin?

I believe this is a misplacement of priorities. One son got rid of a wife in part at least becaue he is allergic to cats and she wouldn't get rid of hers. I cheered his decision, although it cost him heavy bucks.

IMO, no matter how much we depend on pets, humans come first. (and for me, this includes non-related humans as in the burning building test above).

If I get reincarnated I'll try to remember this as a question for anyone I am considering for childcare, or for letting my kid do a sleepover with-"In case of fire, do you save the kids or pets first?"

Ha
DW likes cats too and had two before she met me. I would get rid of the kids first, but then that is probably why we don't have any of the two legged kind.
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-06-2007, 06:39 PM   #56
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

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Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
Funny...Oprahs vet was on tv the other day (hey...my wife was watching it, I was cooking...errr...nevermind) and his recommended food pecking order was:

- raw meat
- high end canned
- premium canned
- super premium dry
- premium dry

We feed ours the Costco brand, which so far hasnt had any recalls pointed towards it. We were feeding the Innova EVO to all the critters until the local feed store decided to raise the price 2-3 bucks a bag every time I bought it. I quit when it was topping $55 for a medium size bag. At $16 for a bag twice the size, and pretty good ingredients...back to the Costco food.
Raw food is supposed to be the best. It's not just raw meat, though. You have to either make your own, which involves grinding organ meats and various supplements, or buy pre-made frozen foods, which is VERY expensive. This site compares Innova dry food to a raw diet, rather favorably. http://cats.about.com/od/catfood/gr/evo.htm

Oh, and I did a search on dry vs. canned. It seems like there's serious disagreement on which is best.

Here's a quote that sounds very like what my vet told me:

Quote:
Given their choice, most cats prefer canned diets. The aroma, flavor and palatability of dry diets do not match that of canned. Cats are creatures of habit and quickly get accustomed to a flavor and consistency of diet to the exclusion of all others. Which ever you buy, be sure the label says that the diet meets the National Research Council’s guidelines on feline nutrition and is certified by the Association of American Feed Control Officials. Over the years I have found that cats fed dry diets have less tartar build up on their teeth and less gum disease surrounding the teeth. With time, gum inflammation associated with canned diets causes the tissues surrounding the teeth to recede and the teeth to loosen. With time, bacteria moving through the blood stream from infected gums cause damage to the kidneys and liver. Dry cat foods have greater caloric density – that is they are richer. This is because canned food contains about 75% water. I do not suggest semi-moist diets because of the large amount of preservatives they contain.
But I saw an article by another vet that said she didn't find this to be true. Ultimately, though, one of my cats is a nibbler, and needs me to leave food out for her through the day, and canned food isn't probably good after an hour or so out.

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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-06-2007, 09:44 PM   #57
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

my bond-strneght was broguht to light a few months ago, when my dog was really sick form that tainted food that went around ( we didnt know the cause)


well, she had to goto the ER for an undetermined amount of time....and no guarantees. she is 3 yrs old. it was 250-300/day, and she needed to stay a minimum of 3 days.

As much as I didnt want to, i set a 1500 dollar limit with my fiance. beyond that, i couldnt see throwing money at her as being worth it. my orginal $$ limit was 1000, but she made me feel guilty


well, 1100 later, shes okay. and the food company has done nothign to help pay
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-07-2007, 12:39 PM   #58
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
unless they're like the person I overheard at the Humane Society dropping off their dog because its coat didn't match the new upholstery in their living room.


people like that shouldn't be allowed to have pets in the first place.

I read an article not too long ago about some guy that convicted of torturing a dog. So he's not allowed to own one for 3 years. 3 years?!?!? hello, how about NEVER AGAIN?!?!?!?

do all of you pet-lovers know about the rainbow bridge, btw?

http://www.petloss.com/poems/maingrp/rainbowb.htm

in case you haven't read it before, well, be careful. I can't read it without bawling...
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-07-2007, 02:22 PM   #59
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
I'm not condemning 20-somethings or new parents, unless they're like the person I overheard at the Humane Society dropping off their dog because its coat didn't match the new upholstery in their living room.
If their dog was anything like mine, they should have just waited
a few months, and the couch would have exactly matched the color
of the dogs coat.
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?
Old 05-07-2007, 02:46 PM   #60
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Re: Pets. How strong is the bond?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Celany
people like that shouldn't be allowed to have pets in the first place.
I think they should be "put to sleep"...
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