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Old 07-20-2005, 03:40 AM   #10
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Default Re: Pets, Kids and Families

My ILs are amazed because we have a cat and they thought all cats scratched and bit and tore up furniture and suffocated sleeping babies. Ours (and our previous) have never done this.

Some cats do. But I think you have to be sensible when it comes to choosing pets. A lot of people choose a kitten because it's cute (and yes, they are cute!!!) BUT having a young animal is always a gamble. You only find out the hard way what type of personailty it has. Nurture is partly responsible for the animal's attitude but they are still born with tendencies.

We adopted a cat when I was 4 months pregnant. I refused to have a kitten for the reason outlined above. I also made sure I went to a trusted cattery and I had thought long and hard about the personality type of the animal: gentle, not aggressive, not wild, placid, etc... We were shown several animals that met these criteria. We spent time with each animal. With some, it became quickly apparent that they would not match our lifestyle and future family. In the end, we did find one that fitted us.

My point is that often people choose animals irresponsibly, for the wrong reasons. I know folk who have very aggressive dogs or what can only be described as psychotic cats. In one case, people avoid going to this lady's house because her cat is so aggressive. I am a cat-lover but I would not go anywhere near that animal.

On the flip side, it makes me very angry when I see kids taunting animals. The other day I saw 6 kids ganging up on a pigeon. I HATE pigeons but it mad me furious to see that kids (and parents) thought they could do this to a defenseless animal.

Well, I'm no expert but that's my 2cts worth.

FWIW, we always had animals at home (ever since we were newborns). None of us hurt the animals or were attacked/scratched/bitten by them (and 2 of my siblings were very difficult children). I think it's more difficult to explain to a child how to respect an animal if that child has never had contact with one before. For that reason, I am happy to see how our cat and our baby get along. You might find me here in a few months' time if they don't fit in with each other!!
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