Tuesday, January 28, 2014

It's not their fault...

Once upon a time there was a young woman and a young man living together in college. They shared a love for animals and one day they bought a kitten. They loved the kitten so very much and as he started to grow they thought it would be a good idea to buy another little kitten to keep him company. That's just what they did!

These two cats became the best of friends and the young couple was in love with their little furry family. So why not keep the merriment going? A dog was next.

A rambunctious, 11 month old pup rescued from the shelter. She immediately solidified her spot in their family... although the young woman took some time to warm up to their new addition. After the dog's crazy puppy behavior, running away, and chewing ALL. THE. THINGS. came to an end, the woman came around and accepted that this was their dog.

Just as things settled down in their college townhouse (Oh, yeah. Did I mention they all lived in a tiny townhouse?) the delusional happy couple decided, "what's one more?" And they got themselves another cat.

Yup. You read right, there were now two humans, 3 cats and 1 dog all living together like one big happy farm family.

Life was good. Life was fun. Life was letting the cats be indoor/outdoor as they lived near the foothills of their college town. Life was weekend trips to the dog park to let their lovable dog get her never-ending energy out. Life was also chasing after the stupid dog up the aforementioned foothills, in flip-flops, in the summer because she ran away. Chasing after her in thigh-high snow during one of the biggest snow storms Colorado had ever seen, because she ran away. Apologizing to the mommy group at the dog park when our pup placed a dead bird at their feet. Explaining to college professors that the dog literally ate the homework, and the course text book, and the project that was due next week.

But I digress...

I know you are supposed to live your life with no regrets but I just have to say if I could go back in time and get a do over there are a few things from my college years that I would do differently. One of them would be getting all these animals.

I love them all (even the dog on good days) and they've been with us for 12 years now. They each have unique stories and anecdotes to share. They all look very unique and have their quirks. They love us. They love our children. We are a family.


I mentioned that we are going to be moving. Unlike most people our age and with two young kids we actually aren't upgrading, we are downsizing. There are legit reasons for this but the only thing you need to know is we are blessed to be living in a current home with a ton of space. More than enough space for two adults, two kids, and four pets. But the reality is that our new place will probably not be as spacious.

Hubs and I were talking about this last night. We just can't keep up with the four of them any longer. You guys, we have FOUR LITTER BOXES for three cats! Keeping up with the cleaning of the boxes on top of the mess they make around the boxes is a nightmare. Not to mention the smell. Our current place allows for them to be plenty far away from our living areas so it isn't a problem. But we can't count on that where we go next.

We think we are at a place where we really need to downsize our pets.

This is hard for me to type and hard for us to admit. We were sure when we were in our early twenties that we knew what we were doing having this many animals. We would get so defensive and upset when we'd hear how crazy we were. And now? Now I have the lovely job of saying "you were right" to our parents and close friends that shook their heads at us and probably knew that we'd get to this point one day.

It makes me sick because it isn't their faults. Our pets have done nothing wrong and they are happy. But our reality is that it is just too much and it is time. We will begin searching for a good "forever home" for two of our cats. We will NOT give them back to a shelter. It is just not an option.

I'm sad about this but we aren't college kids any more making decisions on a whim and flying by the seat of our pants. We are adults and we have to make decisions based on what makes the most sense for our future, our financials, and our family. Even if the decision isn't ideal.

My biggest fear is that no one will want them. Adult cats aren't as appealing as kittens. If we cannot find good homes for them we will all stay together. Like I said, giving them to a shelter would just break our hearts.

So here we are. I hope we are making the right decision and I hope we can find someone who will love our cats as much as we do. They are good, sweet cats and deserve a good home. Maybe we'll even find someone who would take them both? Who knows.

I feel like a terrible person. Like I said, this is a very hard decision to make. Plus, when it really comes down to it we may just be all talk and not be able to say goodbye to two of our little guys (and yes, we've decided which two will go).

This new house thing is going to be an adventure and I'm really hoping that the whole experience won't feel this sad.

Have you ever had to give away a pet? Are there any poor choices you made in college you'd like to have a do over with? And I just have to ask... If you live in Colorado, do you want a cat?  

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