My boys love animals. Not like them, not really care for them…. love them. They pet every stray cat that crosses their path- and that’s one about ever 45 seconds where we live. The baby even squeals with delight and points uncontrollably at the stray cats who have taken up residence outside our building and in our dumpster. They check the W.W.F. endangered species directory on a regular basis.They run an animal rescue operation consisting of stuffed animals…
Brooks is distraught for the rest of the day when he sees garbage in the ocean because he says it’s not healthy for the fish.
They add things like “Bull Dog” and “Golden Retriever” to their Christmas list despite the fact that we live in an apartment on the fifth floor…
(Sidenote: I realize the fact that my boys make “Christmas Lists” is totally pagan and puts a blemish on my efforts to “treasure Christ in Christmas.” Blame their Grandmother.)
I’m not really a pet person and hide behind the excuse that we live in an apartment on the top floor of our building and have no room for pets. This excuse allows me to continue to live a happy, pet free life while staying in the good graces of my pet loving children.
However, sometimes I’m overcome with guilt by the fact that my children have never experienced the misery sheer joy of being pet owners. That is exactly what happened to me recently when a friend offered to buy them a pet turtle. I caved.
So, we are now in the animal owning venture. We have
reluctantly happily adopted a turtle. The boys named him– Squirt.
He’s a Red Eared Slider Turtle and measures a whopping two inches. He lives in a glass aquarium on the nightstand in Breck and Brooks’ bedroom. We are trying to teach those little guys the value of hard work by entrusting to them the responsibility of keeping the tank clean and feeding him daily. So far, so good.
He seems to be a happy little guy- which is good news, considering our last pet committed suicide due to the sheer unhappiness of his life (our fish took his own life by jumping out of his bowl when we weren’t looking…we found him the next day). Considering our track record, I was leery of taking on another living creature. Honestly, that probably explains why we’ve had Squirt for two months and you’re just now hearing about him.
Despite my hesitations, I’m pleased to announce that Squirt is an absolute joy. I even find myself liking the little guy. He’s super easy to care for, swims towards us when we come near his tank and has even learned to eat out of the boy’s hand. What more could a kid ask for? Besides Salmonella.
The boys have decided if they do a good job caring for Squirt then they graduate to the next level of pet ownership and can choose something really exciting like a Lemur. And since there are no exotic pet laws where we live I’m gonna need some help coming up with a good excuse for that one.