216 Days ’til 40: Pets as Therapy

20 Jul

A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than you love yourself. ~ Josh Billings

A kitten is in the animal world what a rosebud is in the garden. ~ Robert Southey

People who know me know that I LOVE my cats.  My cats (three of them) are members of our family and often the most adored members at that!  They are so loving (yes, they are NOT aloof as some claim cats are) and they are always wanting to be with us.  The looks of adoration in their eyes as they rub up against us or “kill” their stuffed toys as “presents” for us and leave them at our doorstep is too cute.  They purr and snuggle and demand very little in return (food, water, love).  I suppose that, in many ways, we have trained our cats to be more dog like.  All the interactive personality, but they clean themselves!

I believe that a house is not a home without a pet in it.  I realize that this can be a problem for people who are allergic to pets, but for those that are not, pets really change the entire home environment.  Yes, there is cat hair everywhere and it can be a problem when I am trying to wear a black fancy outfit to work, but in the end it is still worth it.

My pets know when I am having a bad day – they check up on me, they care about me, they know how to get close and provide comfort in their own way.  It is amazing how healing it is to have a close relationship with an animal.  They are less emotionally demanding then humans, and provide so much for us.  The love that goes back and forth between an owner and a pet is magical.

I also find that pets are amazing for children.  Children are able to interact with the pets and pets also teach them responsibility (when they are old enough to help care for the pets).  My daughters are very active in the care of our pets and it is a chore we can give them that is easy and age-appropriate and helps to teach them responsibility.  They both love and cuddle our cats, often laying next to them stroking them as they watch a movie or read a book.  It is a pleasure to see.

Research shows that elderly people who own pets live longer – most likely because they care for the pets and the pets give them companionship, and a reason to have to get up each day.

Pets are wonderful (no biases here)!

Today, 216 days ’til 40, I am thankful for my three cats and how their presence enriches the lives of my family.




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37 responses to “216 Days ’til 40: Pets as Therapy

  1. JesseMacGregor-Jones

    July 20, 2012 at 00:19

    Thanks. I love LOVE animals. I posted this to my FB page. 🙂

  2. changeforbetterme

    July 20, 2012 at 01:17

    I agree with you 100%! The only times in my life that I felt totally alone was when I didn’t have a pet! I have 2 cats (bro and sis) and a dog whose personality is 3x bigger then he is! I wouldn’t trade my pets for anything!

  3. runto40

    July 20, 2012 at 01:34

    I love this post– a home is not complete without a pet

  4. writerwannabe763

    July 20, 2012 at 01:54

    Pets are amazing for all of the reasons you mentioned.They are definitely therapeutic as they sense when you are not feeling well and seem to stick closer even than normally….Diane

  5. The Quiet Borderline (back in hospital)

    July 20, 2012 at 02:16

    Cute cute. Enjoy your cats. This is the third blogger that has spoken about their cats. With much love! I was thinking of getting a goldfish but as if that’s anything close to having a cat or dog!!

    • 400daystil40

      July 20, 2012 at 12:33

      It isn’t close, but better than nothing!!! 🙂

      • The Quiet Borderline (back in hospital)

        July 20, 2012 at 18:57

        True true!

  6. ssgt leslie

    July 20, 2012 at 04:21

    i believe it is both ways, when we have the trust and bond with our pets, it is amazing how we tune in too the slightest change, may it be physical or emotional. lizzy, my service dog is teaching me this. enjoy each day with your cats…

    • 400daystil40

      July 20, 2012 at 11:51

      Yes, ,definitely!

      • ssgt leslie

        July 20, 2012 at 16:38

        may you and yours have a good, safe and happy weekend.

  7. Lucianus Mauricius

    July 20, 2012 at 04:22

    Love pets, wish I could have one 😦

  8. Pit

    July 20, 2012 at 06:14

    With 7 cats and 1 dog here, I strongly agree: they enrich our lives ever so much!

  9. saymber

    July 20, 2012 at 18:47

    Speaking from experience – totally agree! Although I just had to put my long hair in “time out” because she keeps begging to go in my craft room to sleep and I don’t want her in there! On the allergy front, living with animals actually helps children and adults immunity. It’s really helped my husband and he’s allergic to EVERYTHING!

  10. sued51

    July 20, 2012 at 18:48

    Nice post. My cats are like yours…very interactive. It is my experience you get the pet you deserve. Aloof cats often have aloof owners. We talk to ours all the time and they “talk” back. We may not speak the same language, but we converse just the same!

    • 400daystil40

      July 21, 2012 at 22:03

      Yes, ours do too! I love it when we yell at our one cat and she talks back to us when she is in trouble! So sassy!

  11. sdunnebacke

    July 20, 2012 at 20:13

    Except for the fancy black outfit for work, I totally identify with all of this.

  12. walkwiththerabbi

    July 21, 2012 at 15:37

    Another animal lover – WONDERFUL! I co-founded a no-kill animal sanctuary with my wife 11 years ago. We’re also opening up a low-cost spay/neuter clinic within a few months. Our 6 dogs and 1 cat (Our cat simply idolizes “her dogs”), are precious beyond words to us. I posted on this recently in “GOD’s Pawprint of LOVE – Animals.” Thank you for spreading the word.

    • 400daystil40

      July 21, 2012 at 21:55

      Wow, that is so cool that you founded a sanctuary! What a blessing for those animals!!!

      • walkwiththerabbi

        July 21, 2012 at 22:49

        My wife and I have been the greatest recipients. The significance we’ve derived is off the charts.

  13. dpress211

    July 21, 2012 at 15:49

    I feel a sense of pride when my wife and I are at someone’s house and the cat sometimes tow or three) comes right up to me. It feels good to to be accepted by animals that require the earning of trust. By the way, our cat scratches on the front door when wanting in or out. We think she was trained by the Maltese-mix (Benji).

  14. Long Life Cats and Dogs

    July 22, 2012 at 14:14

    Heard the dog quote before but never the kitten one. That is beautiful. Thank you

    • 400daystil40

      July 22, 2012 at 22:31

      Thanks, I like the kitten quote too! 🙂

  15. jademwong

    July 22, 2012 at 21:01

    A beautiful post and I couldn’t agree with you more. There is nothing like unconditional love.

  16. Rescuing Little L

    July 23, 2012 at 22:44

    couldn’t agree with you more…they are my source of boundless love and entertainment !

  17. simon7banks

    July 25, 2012 at 22:05

    Cats have a certain reserve, with one another as well as with humans, but that makes it much more significant when they abandon that reserve.

    • 400daystil40

      July 25, 2012 at 22:06

      Yes….. our cats do not have the reserve with our family, but it comes out when strangers visit.


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