Meet the Pets!

March 13, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

Anybody who knows our family knows that we have a tendency to accumulate pets like some people accumulate knickknacks.  Pets are some of my favorite things to photograph, partly because they are so challenging. The hair on black backdrops, the complete indifference to getting a useable shot, the likelihood that they're NOT going to stay where you ask them to stay, all make it more rewarding when a photo shows the personality of our beloved animals.

Without further ado, the current four-legged members of our clan:

Pickles!  Pickles is a Russian Tortoise.  He was a gift from Santa, for Wyatt, several years ago.  He is one of the easiest pets in the world, low-maintenance and kind of calming to watch.  Wyatt named him Pickles because a) Wyatt LOVES pickles, and b) "Pickles are SO GREEN, just like turtles!"

 

This is Annie Sparkles Burger, a two-year-old French bulldog who really thinks she rules the roost.  I took this photo as part of a Christmas Wish List series.  She is definitely the most compliant photo subject of all the pets!  Maybe all the kids too, come to think of it.  Annie was my birthday gift from Chris when she was a little bitty puppy and has been amusing us ever since.  I mean, look at that face!  She always looks dejected, even when she's not.  She pats our legs with a paw when she wants us to pet her and sits stock-still by my legs when I'm cooking supper, just hoping beyond hope that I drop something tasty.  Annie must be asked politely in French to come in the house, or else she stays on the porch steps, looking at us through the open door.  She rarely barks and has a very sweet temperament...until the cat walks in.

This is Cookie.  The cat.  She is a Ragdoll and typical cat in EVERY WAY.  Cookie belongs to Katelyn, 100%, and has since Santa brought her here years ago.  When Katelyn is away from home, Cookie sits in the doorway and waits for her, and then when Katelyn gets home, she studiously ignores her.  Cookie waits until I vacuum, then rolls all over the rugs to make kindly sure we don't run out of cat hair on the floor.  Cookie picks fights with Annie and has some weird dance moves that are absolutely hilarious, even if none of us have any idea what she's doing.

 

This is Poco, full name Lynx Poco Fury.  While he wouldn't win any horse shows, he can be turned out for months, and a kid can still throw a saddle on him and take him trail riding, and he takes care of them.  That is absolutely priceless.  Poco has been known to be best friends with anybody who carries sweet feed in their pockets.  Chris started Poco when he and I were first married, and it always makes me smile to think of Chris working with him then, and him being such a great kid horse now.

Yes, another cat.  Rip belonged to my dad and has a truly special place in my heart.  My brothers and I gave Rip, and his brother Slash (no longer with us) to my dad for Christmas in 1999.  That's right, Rip is 16 years old.  He is diabetic, requiring two insulin shots a day, and absolutely deaf, owing to his hunting with my dad.  He's getting cataracts, too.  All that aside, he is a *great* mouser, and will come to the door and yowl at us if we are three minutes late with his food.

Unfortunately, we have lost some much-loved pets over the past months, even while I was planning this blog post.  I did not want them to be left out, because they are definitely still in our hearts and on our minds.

This was Cupcake, a "mini" pig.  She didn't exactly stay mini, because we let her outside to graze as much as she wanted.  Cupcake and Poco were great friends.  I'm pretty sure she actually thought she was a horse, because goodness knows there weren't any other pigs around.  Cupcake loved grapes, carrots, and really anything else even slightly edible.  She was little trouble (unless we were trying to feed another animal without her participation) and lots of fun to watch.  I miss having her around.

Finally, Mr. Pricklepants, an African Pygmy hedgehog.  Mr. P., as we called him, passed away only a few weeks ago.  He was Logan's pet, a gift for his 6th birthday.  Mr. P. enjoyed mealworms, running on his wheel, and getting rides in the back of a Tonka truck.  We gave him oatmeal baths and toenail trims and learned a lot by watching him huff and puff into a spiky ball, lick our clothes or fingers, or burrow into the crook of our elbows.  

Pets are so much a part of our lives, as I know they are for so many people, so I think they should absolutely be included in photographs, shedding hair, disobedience, and all.


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