No Need To Be Catty About This

, , , , | Related | September 28, 2020

My dad has always helped make sure our pets are financially cared for. As children, he always told us that if we get a pet we are accepting the responsibility to care for them no matter what happens. When we all grow up and move out my dad inherits the cat who has been there for over ten years. Now that the cat is sixteen years old, my dad has passed on care of the house and cat to me. About two weeks ago, he asked me about my twelve-year-old chihuahua.

Dad: “How is [Dog]? I’ve noticed you haven’t borrowed any money for her to go to the vet lately.”

Me: “Oh, she’s good. She should probably see the vet for her heart murmur, though.”

Dad: “Why haven’t you done that? Money is no excuse. When you get a pet, you take responsibility for that pet.”

Me: “Well, with my car breaking down and you loaning me the money for that and for the house, I was trying to pay you back before I asked for more.” 

Dad: “I’m well aware of how much you owe me, but you owe it to her to make sure she sees the vet.”

Me: “I, uh… Yes, sir. Thanks.”

Today, I get a card from the vet saying it’s time for my dog’s yearly vet appointment along with her kitty brother. I owned two cats before moving in. As a bad pet parent, I accidentally waited too long and did not get my female fixed before she, ahem, “multiplied,” and I kept one of her kittens. With the sixteen-year-old, I now have three cats; all are now fixed.

Me: *To Dad* “Hey, remember how we talked about the vet the other day for [Dog]? Well, I just got a card saying that she and [Young Male Cat] are due for checkups. Will you help me pay for them?”

Dad: “Sure. It’s [Vet], right? They’re used to how we do things.”

Usually, my sisters or I go to the vet and my dad pays over the phone.

Me: “Yup. Oh, and when is [Old Male Cat] due for his next checkup?”

Dad: “I’d have to look it up. I’m a bad pet parent and don’t practice what I preach.”

Me: “Okay, well, I’ll practice what you preach, then. I can plan on taking [Older Male Cat] and [Momma Cat] together in about six months. That way, it’s two pets twice a year.” 

Dad: “Perfect.”

He never wanted pets, which did cause him to be incredibly strict on the whole “take care of your pet” thing; if we didn’t feed them and treat them right, they got new homes. It sounds harsh, but we learned real quickly that he had no problem giving animals to “other children willing to appreciate their pets,” and we’ve always made sure our pets were cared for in homes, not shelters.

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