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You Know You Are Owned
By Your Pets When...

You have a mental list of people you'd like to spay or neuter.

Running out of paper towels is a household crisis.

You not only know all the characteristics of a good "stool," you discuss them at dinner.

You have a bumper sticker that reads "My Basset Hound Is Smarter Than Your Graduate Student."

You can compare and contrast the finer elements of different kitty litter brands the way some people talk about wine.

You secretly wonder about such things as how animals can manage without wiping.

You pray they will someday manufacture Teflon furniture.

You have phone calls forwarded to PetSmart.

When your animal projectile vomits, you compare the speed and trajectory with previous incidents, and if the statistics fall short, you worry if the animal is okay.

You absentmindedly pat people on the head or scratch them behind their ears.

Given the choice of having your teeth cleaned or their teeth cleaned, they get their teeth cleaned.

You not only allow pets on the couch, guests have to sit on the floor because the dog has "territorial issues."

Your spouse missed the final game of the World Series because the cat wanted to watch his favorite video, "Birds of North America."

Anytime the animal appears lethargic, you go on-line and investigate Vet-med websites, pose questions to your address book and on e-lists, and by the time you digest all the information and field the correspondence, the animal has torn out the window screens, masticated a couch cushion and left something disgusting in your favorite pair of shoes.

Your chatroom handle is "Queen of Spayeds."

You and your vet are on a first name basis and he genuflects when you enter the waiting room.

His daughter at Harvard refers to you as "Auntie."

You needed a prescription to recover from "Old Yeller."

You've forwarded more warnings about the dangers of chocolate, onions and mistletoe than the National Center for Disease Control has issued about anthrax and smallpox.

You wear white year 'round, not because you are flaunting a fashion law or belong to a religious sect, but because you have a Dalmatian, Great Pyrenees, Samoyed or white Persian at home.

The world would never guess from your "dog or kittyspeak" posts to e-lists that in reality you are chairman of the IBM corporation.

Vacuum cleaners in your household don't just die, they go out with more smoke and noise than the Taliban.

By the time you investigate different flea control products, their advantages and potential risks, natural versus chemical methods, and study the life cycle of the flea, any fleas have died of old age.

You tell your children to "heel!" in a grocery store.

You spend eleven months of the year preaching an appreciation and understanding of canine behavior and the nature of the dog, then you stick fake reindeer antlers on the dog and photograph him for your Christmas Card.

Your last vehicle was purchased because you needed more room for the beasts.

You've called poison control twice for your beasts, but never for a family member.

Your friends call you before they call their vet.

You buy your new carpeting based on the colors of the fur that will be enhancing it.

People stop and ask "How're the kids" referring to your furry family.

You haven't seen out your windows/backdoor in ages.

You Christmas shop not only for your beasts, but for family members beasts and the neighbors too.

You think nothing of doing a load of dog dishes in the dishwasher.

You buy a pool just for the dogs.

You think nothing of getting IN the shower with a dog for their bath.

Your children/grandchildren refer to the beasts as siblings.

A trip to the ice cream shop with the beasts is the highlight of your day.



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