Petable Pets

Are there any unusual pets you’ve had — or would like to have?

I loved the dogs I have had with all my heart, but I find it hard to live without cats.

Not unusual, although, some of them have been!

Over the course of my life my families have had a rat, a mouse, a hamster, several guinea pigs.  We’ve had aquarium fish, turtles and even a rescue snake, (little garden snake; I never wanted one, would never have one again.)

We had, throughout my life, assorted birds: parakeets, a Beebee parrot, a cockatiel, a canary, assorted finches and a Spice bird, (with the sweetest song that never goes above a whisper!)

As for anything out of the unusual, my mother fed and tamed squirrels; we fed tame raccoons.

In Idaho, I spoiled my neighbor’s cows by feeding them cornstalks; the donkey at the small, local zoo took a liking to me and I visited him regularly.
I thought I’d like a donkey after that. I visited someone here who said theirs was cantankerous. He was friendly with me. (Maybe donkeys would like to have me as a pet!) That never happened, and now won’t.

When I moved to Kentucky, the people next door to me let us ‘share’ their menagerie which over the years included turkeys, guinea fowl, assorted chickens and geese. They had a potbellied pig, miniature goats, (we witness the birth of tiny twin kids!), an iguana, (who allowed me to feed it when my neighbors were away; he didn’t say much), two ferrets, (both of whom were escape artists and would come to me when I called to them), and a lamb, which I bottle-fed and washed while my neighbors worked. Fun that I had, I would, however, not choose to keep any of them on my own.

The people behind us had horses which I always made friends with, (mostly via apples and carrots).

I can’t say that many unusual animals have appealed much to me. I have enjoyed watching the shenanigans of weasels, but they can be so fierce.

Otters seem terribly cute, but I would hate to confine one. They seem to have so much fun frolicking.

Beavers are also quite cute, but some fool took one home from a park in Colorado when we were there. The man  got into trouble when he had to call the authorities for help; the beaver had almost destroyed the entire bathroom the kidnapper had locked him into.

I’ve seen tame, de-scented skunks who behaved like cats, but why bother? There are plenty of cats that need homes.

If there was a way to guarantee the continual tameness of such a creature, I’d like a bear. I’d never torture one the way those who captured them in the past did to keep them in control. But I  think bears  are beautiful. I always made sure that I saw Smoky when I went to the National Zoo when I was a kid and I visited all of his neighbors. For whatever reason, most zoos no longer have bears. I miss seeing them. But do I think it’s a good idea to keep a bear? No, no, I don’t.

As much as I love cats, I would never even in my wildest dreams want to keep a Big Cat or a Wildcat. The feral cats and abused spitfires I have worked to tame have been  enough for me. I find that their individual personalities are often unusual enough, thank you very much!


About Tonette Joyce

Tonette was a once-fledgling lyricists-bookkeeper, turned cook/baker/restaurateur and is now exploring different writing venues,(with a stage play recently completed). She has had poetry and nonfiction articles published in the last few years. Tonette has been married to her only serious boyfriend for more than thirty years and she is, as one person described her, family-oriented almost to a fault. Never mind how others have described her, she is,(shall we say), a sometime traditionalist of eclectic tastes.She has another blog : "Tonette Joyce:Food,Friends,Family" here at WordPress.She and guests share tips and recipes for easy entertaining and helps people to be ready for almost anything.
This entry was posted in big plans, decisions, Family, memories, Miscellaneous, pets, Tonette Joyce, What if. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Petable Pets

  1. You’ve certainly been exposed to a variety of animals. Your post reminded me of the rat my ex gifted me with when we first started dating. It was a very tame and sweet creature. Then my sister had parakeets when she was in high school.

    A bear is an interesting choice. I don’t think I’ve ever seen one in person, not even at a zoo. I’m sure they’re amazing to see.


  2. Patricia Kiyono says:

    I knew you’d have quite a list for us! Your Kentucky neighbors apparently had enough variety for their own blog post.


  3. Jeff Salter says:

    Wow. You could’ve had your own “Mutual of Omaha Wild Kingdom” reality show.
    Quite an impressive list.
    I don’t have any inclination to associate with wild animals. To me, they are called ‘wild’ for a reason — they run on instinct and those instincts are to be aggressive when their survival feels threatened. I had a neighbor who regularly fed a whole family of raccoons each evening. They became quite “friendly” and would take food from the neighbor’s hands. But that level of trust and “innocence” can quickly turn to a dangerous bite or scratch… if they sense any sudden movement or change in intent. Wild animals are wild.
    At some point this week, I mentioned that I could see having a wild critter as a “pet” only if raised from the first moments of their birth… so that they have identified me as their momma or daddy.
    My mom, for example, in bottle feeding baby chimps, never had any of them try to bite her — to the best of my recollection. They clung to her as they would have done to their mommas.


  4. Elaine Cantrell says:

    That’s a big list of creatures! I know you enjoyed them all, except maybe the snake.


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