Our pets enrich our lives in surprising ways

Our pets enrich our lives in surprising ways
by Devon Clowdus

Pets not only keep us company, they entertain us, too. Hobe Sound teacher Ms. Connie Coleman agrees when it comes to her cat, Sandy.

Four-year-old Sandy (an only child) entertains her owner daily. Every morning, when the alarm goes off, and Ms. Coleman reaches for the snooze button, Sandy races to pull the covers down.
“She knows if I don’t get up, she won’t get fed,” says Ms. Coleman.

When Ms. Coleman gets home from teaching all day, Sandy waits to greet her at the door. This restless cat also plays fetch, chasing a ball across the floor.

She enjoys watching the outdoors from her cat post by the window, says Ms. Coleman, and she likes to sleep in odd places. It’s obvious from all the pictures that Ms. Coleman takes of Sandy–even when she goes to the vet!–how much she loves Sandy.

My sister, Carson Clowdus, has the most frantic and wild dog you might ever meet. This five-month-old, black Cairnoodle (a Cairn terrier and poodle mix) with a patch of white fur on his chest, can never get enough attention.

Patch loves to chase his tennis balls and nestles with his favorite toy, a water bottle dressed as a skunk. He loves the sound the water bottle makes when his teeth crunch down on it.

He spends most of his days chasing cats or sunbathing. Everywhere Carson takes him, people stop her in her tracks. They spot Patch’s bat-like ears and ask, “Is he a Scottie?”

Eight-year-old Lucy, no ordinary beagle, is on her toes waiting for her owner, fifth-grader Gwen Altman, to return.

“Lucy, I’m home,” Gwen shouts as she walks through the door. Lucy races to her with her tail wagging at full speed. When Gwen reaches to pet her frantic dog, Lucy “twirls around in circles,” Gwen says.

Another fifth grader, Lillie Spurgeon, laughs out loud when her Catahoula leopard hound, Jake, gets anywhere near a puppy. This dog is on the edge of the seat when a puppy comes anywhere in sight, Lillie explains, for “who knows what reason?”

Lillie’s other dog, Mickey, fills his spare time, not chasing balls, or sunbathing, or chasing cats. He hunts down lizards. Lillie says she has some pretty crazy dogs!

We all love our pets, though, from Shih Tzus to hounds, from cats to beagles. They bring joy to our lives and have a special place in our hearts.