California Travel Tips

People are Crazy About Their Pets–Birds, Lizards, Hamsters, Dogs…

Published on: January 28, 2012

You never know what to say when you see a lady with birds clinging to her fingers and neck at the beach. Or a girl walking some sort of ancient-looking beast on a leash. Californians love their pets that come in all shapes, sizes, and personality traits. People like to take their animals, birds and invertebrates out in public to show them off, especially when springtime comes around and the weather is nice.

Our neighbors just bought a pet (dog) and they must love it a lot. A van parked in front of their house with a sticker on its rear view window says, “POOCH NANNY–Find Me on Facebook.” That’s exactly what we tried to do this week-find her. Her car was parked out on the street on street sweeping day, and she was going to get a ticket for over $40 if someone didn’t let her know to move it. She house sits pets apparently.

Then there’s the guy who bought a couple pet hamsters. As hamsters do, they grew from two to 52, and continued not to stop. He called in the humane shelter to please help take them away. He couldn’t handle them any longer. As the experts packed up the furry pets and started to drive away, he asked them to stop. “Do you think I can keep two?” he asked. The driver reminded him that two quickly multiply to more, and he decided he will now have to find another type of pet that doesn’t reproduce quite so quickly.

As a final note, my grandfather, Fred  Stock, once rescued an injured falcon from the field near his Illinois home. The young falcon became his pet and lived on the enclosed front porch of the family home on Cherry Street. “Freddy the Falcon” as he was called, had limited room to fly, fresh air and sunshine. Grandpa Freddy loved his falcon and really bonded with the bird. However, it terrorized most who came to visit. When we’d open the door and pass through the front porch to access the home. Freddy the Falcon would come flying at each new visitors, missing them by inches. I think my grandfather had to release the falcon back into the wild as the bird grew and mended. But we’ll never forget that adventure with unusual pets and how my grandpa helped this falcon spread his wings and fly.

According to the California Veterinary Medical Association, pets have been proven to ease loneliness, lengthen life, reduce stress and enhance recovery from illness. Pets fill a very important role in making humans feel needed and can promote an atmosphere of spontaneous play and laughter.

Word to the wise: Make sure you have time to devote to the care of the animals you purchase or someone gives you. Also consider the financial expense of medical bills, food, and the environmental  requirements needed to keep these pets healthy. If you can’t meet the obligations of pet ownership, be kind and don’t own a pet!

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