I'm as big a fan of the online site "Cuteoverload.com" as anyone is, but today I heard a bit of a blurb on the radio about some author's book (I think it was a book?) which comments on how society is treating our pets more and more like children and questions, is that a good thing? Well, I admit I overindulge my cat and talk to it like a child...so I am probably as guilty as anyone in that regard to treat my cat like a baby...well, sort of. I talk so much to him that I am pretty sure that he thinks that meowing back to me, that I totally understand him and what he is telling me! Mostly he tells me what he WANTS. Be it FOOD, or LET ME OUTSIDE, or well, that's probably about it! He certainly has learned that if he meows...it usually gets the results he wants! (Well, as for going out, Calgary has a bylaw...no cats outside - though many do go out). But I go with my cat - frankly, I don't trust him to stay close to home and the street we live on is fairly busy with traffic during morning and evening rush hours. On the other hand, when I do go out with him...he is a cat of habit and does not take off in any direction. He has a habitual tour of our house and usually aims to go to our backyard where I can sit and watch him. I only go out when I feel like it though...I indulge him only when I feel like it!
The one thing I do not like is when I see in photos (as on Cuteoverload) dogs (or well any animal) dressed in clothing. This is where I really draw the line. Pets are animals....cute as they are, and yes, we do love them as our own children probably, but they do not IMO warrant wearing clothing. If dogs or pets could feel humiliation (do they?) I would think this would be one way they should feel humiliated! LOL. This is where the human is definitely indulging his or her own whim.
Aside from this opinion of mine, what do you think? Do you think that some people are replacing having children with pets? That pets fill an emotional need, (well, this I don't think you can argue with re most pets) but do you think that having pets fill that need is too much in some cases? It is so true that having a pet (dog and probably a cat too) can do so much for our emotional and physical well being...blood pressure is reduced when you pet them, and increases oxytocin levels in the blood (that feel good calming hormone that breast-feeding your baby gives the mother!). The latter is something I just heard about on a documentary on t.v. recently. Also that owning a dog will probably increase your life span! So hey, good stuff. But do we go overboard when we treat our pets like children?