To adopt or not to adopt 12/7/20

Thoughts by Richard Bleil

The process of moving into my new house has begun. The payment for my storage unit has just gone through, so I have a month to move what is in there to the new place, although it will only take a few trips. I’m planning on one trip a day and I’ll still be done before my furniture arrives on Friday. Unfortunately, because of plumbing problems, I cannot move in yet, but I’m hoping that it will be sorted out in a few days.

Decisions are coming fast and furious. Some are minor, like what cleaning supplies I need. Some are more significant like what will I pay to have repaired and what will I try to do on my own. One of my favorite decisions, however, involves furry friends. And, no, I’m not talking about adults who like to dress like adults and not have sex together. I mean a dog, cat, or some other animal although, honestly, it’ll be a dog or a cat.

Every day I miss my friends Bella (a ¾ lab and ¼ German Shepherd mutt) and Sir Purrsalot (a long-haired orange tabby). They were my best friends through some very hard times, and every day I feel like I didn’t treat them right. No, I wasn’t abusive to them (they were my buddies, y’know), but I just feel like I could have been a better and more attentive human for them.

The new house has a beautiful fenced-in yard. It could use a couple of gates which would allow me to close off the entire yard rather than just a portion of it and give me the option of closing part off as well. This would allow for a doggy door so s/he wouldn’t have to wait for me to go on walks, but currently there is no puppy door. My Bella I adopted from a colleague whose dog had a litter (hence the knowledge of the exact mix). Driving home from the farm, this little puppy crawled in my lap, peed, rested her head on the crux of my arm as I was trying to drive and fell fast asleep. How could I not love her instantly?

A cat would love this house. Two main floors (and a basement), and many rooms, some will be left more or less unoccupied primarily for renovation. With a cat, I’ve always wanted to install one of those cat obstacles courses on the wall with scratching posts, places to rest and fun activities. My first cat, Sir Purrsalot, adopted us. Coming home late one cold November night, I heard the tiniest little “mew” from out there, somewhere, in the dark. Instinctively I called, “here, kitty”, and he showed up rubbing against my leg. I wasn’t sure I wanted to adopt a cat, but when I went in my house, he started “mew-ing” outside of the front door, and Bella looked at me and said, “hey, did we get a cat?” When I opened the door, he strutted right past me and my hundred-pound dog, looked around, and said “yeah, this’ll do”. Of course, he could stay.

Don’t worry. They never really spoke to me. I haven’t had a dog tell me to kill anybody in months. So I haven’t.

It’s time. I’ve been alone for many years (alone meaning without a furry buddy), and frankly, it’s horrible. I think, maybe next week after I’m a little more settled and have all of my utilities working, I might take a trip to the humane society. Of course, these days you can’t just “drop by”, but I’ll make an appointment. I realize that a lot of people don’t like going to the Humane society as many of the pets there are older, but damnit, so am I and I’d like to be taken in by a woman. And an employer. And a cat or dog.

Bella and Purrsy made my old house a home. They’re needy, misbehaving little children, and you can’t help but love them. They were expert snugglers, and so very sweet. Every morning, I used to wake up laying on my side with Bella sleeping against my belly, and Purrsy fast asleep in the crook of my bent legs. The alarm would go off, and they wouldn’t so much as budge. We’d just lay there, listening to the alarm until I would finally say, “listen you two, somebody has to let me up!” They were so smart they always understood what that meant, and, always, I was disappointed that they let me up.

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