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Old December 24 2011, 06:43 AM   #1
Miss Chicken
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Location: Howrah, Hobart, Tasmania
Your first pets

At the first house we lived in Dad bred budgerigars but they weren't really considered pets. We also had some sort of tortoise or turtle but I only have vague memories of him/her.

When we moved Mum decided that we could have a cat. We got a little female kitten called Sam. Sam died a few weeks later. My sister cried so much at school that a girl in her class told her grandmother and her grandmother brought around a kitten to see if we wanted it. We called her Tiddles.

Tiddles grew up to be a fat, totally spoilt cat. She was so lazy she couldn't be bothered chasing anything. Here is photo of her with two of our later pets.




The guinea pig used to boss her around and the budgie would walk all over her.

We got Tiddles when I was 7, she was put to sleep (because she had cancer) when I was 18.

Which is the first pet you have memories of?
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Old December 24 2011, 06:55 AM   #2
Spot's Meow
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Re: Your first pets

My first cat was named Scooter. I named him that because I really enjoyed riding my scooter. I feel very sad when I think about him because I have some very bad memories. The day that I won my first softball game and lost my first tooth, we came home and I discovered Scooter standing on our porch and scratching on our front door, with the skin of his face hanging off his chin. My mom took him to the vet and he didn't come back. She told us he was in a lot of pain, and would we rather have him live in terrible pain or be put to sleep forever? We both said we wanted him to live, and my mom shook her head no and we cried. He was only about 5 years old I believe.
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Old December 24 2011, 07:08 AM   #3
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Re: Your first pets

The parakeet would walk all over the cat and the cat was too lazy to go after it?

That's one lazy cat!

My first pet was also a cat - a Siamese cat named Tuffy. But I was very young and barely remember Tuffy. The first pet I had that I really remember was a black Cocker Spaniel who we called Dominic. We got him as a puppy and he lived to be about 12 years old.
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Old December 24 2011, 07:21 AM   #4
Nerys Ghemor
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Re: Your first pets

The first pet I grew up with was a Labrador Retriever named Huey. (A girl. ) She was rather rambunctious and not the best-trained dog in the world...and frankly, she scared the daylights out of me as a toddler. She had fun and cute moments, but regrettably I don't think I really loved her until she was a very old dog, in her last year, when I was 8. When she slowed down, I was able to get closer to her.

The first pet I really got along with was the cat, Herbert (also a girl, named for this book, since she was a stray). In fact, since she was adopted when I was 4, I am actually pretty convinced that Herbert thought she had adopted me! She sure seemed to think she was my "mommy" sometimes, and loved to bathe my hand as though I were a kitten. Even the way she acted in her old age really struck me--I kid you not--as a protective mother trying to prepare a child for the death she knew was coming. I only realized it afterwards when I thought about her behavior.

In fact, I'd swear this cat had a "bucket list." Or we could call it a "bathtub list," considering her first "wish" that she acted on in her final weeks was to walk the rim of the bathtub for the first time in all her years, to see just what I was up to in there with all that water. Then she made sure to chase a gecko that got into the house, just like she was a kitten. And finally--this cat was not a lap cat, but made sure to lay on my lap for a good long time one day a few weeks before we knew she was sick.

And a month after she passed, she even checked in on me in a dream to assure me that she didn't blame me for her being put to sleep, and that she was happy where she was. (I'm not going to debate that with anyone. Period. I will only say the dream had a clarity I know is anomalous compared to normal dreams I have had.)



In less than a week, I'll have my first two cats that are mine only, and don't belong to my parents.
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Old December 24 2011, 07:30 AM   #5
Miss Chicken
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Re: Your first pets

The budgie in my photo was a little demented. His name was Birdle and he was totally in love with his penguin toy. If you hide the penguin Birdle would search frantically for it.

At one point he another toy bird in his cage but he hated it. He would drag it over to his water bowl and 'drown' it by putting it head first into the bowl.
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Old December 24 2011, 01:35 PM   #6
Deranged Nasat
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Re: Your first pets

My first pets were both failures, sadly. There was a goldfish named Happy, who ended up killing itself by jumping out of its bowl. We assumed the bowl was big enough, but apparently not. "Happy" ended up taking on a rather ironic tone, I think. Then there was Crackers I, the blue budgie, who only lasted a week or so before dying of (I assume) a disease. But then we replaced him with the green budgie, Crackers II, who lived for another eight-nine years or so and finally died of old age, so he was a great success. He's the one I think about when asked to consider "my pet"; Happy and Crackers I are too vague, but Crackers II was a cheery part of my life for most of my late childhood and adolescence.

There was also the hamster, Biscuit, though he was my sister's. He was a success too, living almost three years before dying of old age. Finally I had a fish tank for a few years, with varying degrees of success depending on what was in there at any one time. The Gold Barbs thrived the most.
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Last edited by Deranged Nasat; December 24 2011 at 03:23 PM.
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Old December 24 2011, 01:38 PM   #7
Deranged Nasat
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Re: Your first pets

Nerys Ghemor wrote: View Post
In fact, I'd swear this cat had a "bucket list." Or we could call it a "bathtub list," considering her first "wish" that she acted on in her final weeks was to walk the rim of the bathtub for the first time in all her years, to see just what I was up to in there with all that water. Then she made sure to chase a gecko that got into the house, just like she was a kitten. And finally--this cat was not a lap cat, but made sure to lay on my lap for a good long time one day a few weeks before we knew she was sick.
I've spent enough time around cats to know how driven by emotion they can be. It certainly wouldn't suprise me to find that, if they were aware of failing health, they might make an effort to "put their affairs in order" . They're complex creatures, cats, aren't they?
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Old December 24 2011, 03:53 PM   #8
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Re: Your first pets

The first pet I remember having was a Siamese cat when I was a little kid - maybe four or five. I don't remember that much about her (I think it was a her) other than that she was really temperamental.
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Old December 24 2011, 04:06 PM   #9
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Re: Your first pets

My dad loved canaries and we always had one. When I was about 7 it was time to get another one, and since it was near my birthday I was allowed to choose it. I can't remember what I named it, but within a week it was found dead in its bath (nowadays we laugh about our emo canary, but I was upset at the time). Soon after we got an orange canary simply named Birdie and he lived for 5 years. Shortly before he died we got our first non-bird pet, a Shetland Sheepdog puppy named Reggie. I was 14 and the youngest child so Reggie was the family baby and was spoiled rotten. She was a lovely little dog and lived to 14.
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Old December 24 2011, 05:59 PM   #10
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Re: Your first pets

Growing up, there was never a time when we didn't have pets (dogs, cats, horses, rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, turtles, parakeets, etc.) and other animals (sheep, geese, chickens and ducks), but the first pet that was truely mine was my basset hound name Gertrude. When my parents felt we were old enough, each kid got their own pet (I had 6 older siblings so by the time I came around there were pets galore). I was 7 when I got Gertie, and she was a great dog. She even saved my life once (well, maybe just my fingers):

I went snowmobiling by myself on a really cold day and got my hand stuck when I tried to remove some snow chunks from the tread (probably should have turned the machine off first). I was in the woods past the second hayfield and no one could hear me call for help. After what seemed like hours my dog Gertie came up. She stayed for a while then took off towards the house. A little while later my brother rode up on his snowmoblie and freed my hand. He said Gertie was acting strange so he decided to follow her. I had pretty bad frostbite (to this day two of my fingers are very cold sensitive), but without my dog, it could have been a lot worse.

I had Gertie for 14 years and cried my heart out when I had to put her down. I've had other dogs since, but as much as I loved them (and still do in the case of my current dog Azul), no dog will ever come close to replacing Gertie in my heart.
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Old December 25 2011, 11:44 AM   #11
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Re: Your first pets

By first pet, I take this to mean the first one I picked out and cared for, not something my parents had around when I was a kid.

I have a big, sloppy chocolate Lab named Rupert. He's about 4, weighs 90 lbs, has the grace of a bowling ball, and has launched several Xmas ornaments into orbit with his tail. His hobbies include eating things he shouldn't and making smelly farts, rolling in smelly stuff, and just being smelly in general. He drools whenever I get out any cheese.

He's a great dog.
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Old December 25 2011, 02:47 PM   #12
iguana_tonante
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Re: Your first pets

And people ask me why I prefer cats.

My first pet was a goldfish named Tommy that I won at a fair. He lasted a number of years, and even survived a 2,000-miles voyage by car in a expressly-modified Tupperware container. Tough muthafucka.
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Old December 25 2011, 02:49 PM   #13
Australis
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Re: Your first pets

The family dog, Belle. She used to trot around with me all over the place when I was a kid. Distemper got her.

We have a pet now, a pleasant, happy dog named Bella, but... I don't want pets any more, Hurts too much when they go. It really does.
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Old December 26 2011, 03:24 AM   #14
SmoothieX
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Re: Your first pets

And people ask me why I prefer cats.
My cat died a few months back. I felt terribly about it, but I don't really feel a need to buy another one anytime soon.

I'm a dog nut. My mom's dog died recently, so we took her to pick a new puppy yesterday as long as she was in town for Xmas. I spent 2 hours rolling around on the floor with Corgi puppies at the breeder's kennel. Better than any gift I received so far today.
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Old December 26 2011, 09:42 AM   #15
Seventh White Boomer
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Re: Your first pets

The first family pet I remember was a dog named Spot we had when we we lived overseas. We left him with family when he left that country and moved back to Australia.

The first pet that was "mine" (I was 8 so it was more of a family pet) was a black cat named Happy that we got not long after we moved back to Australia. Unfortunately, it disappeared not long after we moved interstate 4 years later and while we found her again a year later, she disappeared on a more permanent basis while we were on holidays not long after we got her back.
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