OUR FAMILY PETS - More Expensive Then Kids
Let's Have Some Fun today, Shall We?
So, what is a mother to do? It was hard enough to say "OK" to our Golden Retriever puppy "Super Zoe" after having two kids, but when my partner insisted about the importance of a family dog a few years ago....I just gave in. Afterall I had no energy to argue and my kids were climbing the walls. ha ha Just call me "Sucker." The main reason I did not want another dog (I had owned more then 10 during my lifetime and love animals) was that I had two young children age 5 and 3 and frankly between kids and work...I was exhausted!!
Our dog Super Zoe has been a great family dog indeed but no matter how great she is, it still takes a lot of extra work and financial responsibilities. Just recently our dear dog had a very bad infection and we had to rush to an emergency animal hospital on a Sunday afternoon. My son who is very attached to Super Zoe would not give up until I gave in. By the time we got to the animal hospital, a young girl brought in a cat that had been attacked by a neighbors pit bull and a Wildlife rescue unit dropped off an injured owl. After about 2-3 hours they finally let us go with a big bill and a supply of antibiotics. Then came the follow up check up at our family vet where they told me that she had an "infection" but did not know "what it was." OK, thanks for the information, all the blood tests and do you take credit cards? I think by the time I finished with the hospital and the vet follow up where they did a few different tests, my bills came to about $400.00. Maybe it is time to get "pet insurance."
Boarding Your Animals.....
The main point of this article is that people do not realize how much family pets actually cost. Now let's talk about "boarding pets" for people who travel a lot during the year. Ofcourse there are other options, but it is also hard to ask friends or relatives to look after your pets. Don't forget, there is a possibility that things can go terribly wrong or that another child may get really attached to your family pet. So I have opted for boarding our dog at a local ranch and for a two week vacation I have to pay around $400.00-$500.00. Not cheap!!!
We ended up taking our family dog to England for the year and it was a very horrible experience. The main reason we did so is that we thought there was a possibility that we would stay there indefinitely and the kids did not want to lose their dear family dog. There are so many different rules and shots that have to be given at a specific time and sometimes people get it terribly wrong. For example, after preparing Super Zoe for six months before our departure date (shots and tracking chip were not cheap)and then boarding her for a month at the local ranch before she was going to be sent over ($1,000)...the company that I hired screwed up really badly. Did I mention that to send Super Zoe to England both ways came out to about $5,000 just for the transport company? Eventually cause of the screw up on the UK end the company reimbursed half of our fees ($2500.00), and paid the kennel in the UK (900 pounds which came out to around $1800 US dollars at the time) that was holding Zoe in quarantine. And let's not even talk about the stress this whole thing caused and all the tears of worry from the kids. The worse part is we had to visit Zoe at the kennel and could not walk with her outside. We had to only visit inside a very sorry looking kennel. And there is no way of knowing how much it effected the dog itself. The stress of the flight, not seeing us for a month and then traveling in a plane for 10 hours and then getting thrown into a completely different place with no familiar faces. Doggy shock puts it lightly. Anyway Super Zoe is very happy right now and sleeping next to my son's bed every night and they are like two peas in a pod. Thank goodness!
So they shipped Super Zoe over a month early and when she got to the airport she was taken straight to quarantine and put in a kennel about an hour away from where we were living. She was only 3 years old at the time and had to stay there for an extra month until a vet decided that she was healthy enough to be released. It could have gone one or two ways and the bad way would be if she did not pass the health exam they would keep her in there for 6 months and possibly send her back to the U.S. Talk about "stressful?!!!!"
It was a hard thing for the kids to go through and it was eventually resolved but there was a lot of heartache during the experience and the kids worried about her for an extra month.
WELCOME TO THE HAMSTER HAVEN!!!
OK...ready for this one? So YO AND BEHOLD "Mom gets manipulated once again!" My little girl wants a cat and she goes on about this for months. What's a mom to do? Hmmmm? How about find something that takes less upkeep? Easy to move around? Cheaper then larger animals? Don't know about hiding them when we go into hotels? Will venture to that one this Summer. ha
Drum roll please.............HAMSTERS!!!!!!
But the problems started early. First one brought home at Christmas is MUJI the Panda hamster! She is adorable, black and white, loves bananas and climbs like a monkey. PERFECT! Da da!!! NOT. Before I know it MUJI needs company and my little one really puts it on and explains why she needs another one. "I really want 2 little ROBO hamsters mommy in one cage. Please?!!! "Well sweetie, if they stay in cages what is the being deal? Once again my little one is so HAPPY!!! But when we get to the local pet shop, one of the ROBO hamsters never got there so we are stuck with the choice of taking the one mini hamster and waiting for them to order another. And let's not forget, you are supposed to order ROBO hamsters that are siblings says my little one. So we take the one little ROBO hamster and hope that the pet store gets another one. When we go back to the store, there is one ROBO hamster by itself again and one teddy bear hamster in another cage. My little girl opts for the bigger one and "voila!" WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED?!!!! I ask myself?! Now we have three hamsters?!!!!!!
Some of you are probably saying "Well that's not so bad, right?!" WRONG! Let me tell you what has happened in just a few months. Hamsters usually cost around $10-$12 but let's not forget the cages and supplies and as they grow they may need bigger cages and supplies and by the end of an adventure with three hamsters, I could have taken a trip to Hawaii! ha ha
I can keep going on forever here but I will just let you know a few hellish issues I have experienced in Hamster Haven. Now remember this has only been in the last 6 months since the first Hamster Muji was a Christmas gift. So far I have taken Muji to the vet for an emergency check up since my daughter said she had all the "sick signs." You can imagine me standing with a hamster cage that looks like it is out of a sci fi movie waiting with all the sick dogs and cats just so I can prove to my daughter that I was not cruel to animals. The vet stuck a stick in it's mouth and after it did not eat for 2 days, it suddenly started to eat a sunflower seed. I swear it was looking at me like it was messing with me. Like it was saying HA!!! The vet decided to do a full printed report for my little one incase things got worse and just charged me $20 (more $ then the hamster cost at the pet shop) and proceeds to tell me that he has not seen a hamster in his office for more then 3 years. I thought to myself, what do parents do?! Toss them in a dumpster and tell kids that they ran away? No seriously.....
I mean I didn't even have to think long when it came to the time we took a trip for 4 days and came back to find Muji not moving!! It turns out that the new cage we bought from PETCO had a water bottle in the cage that did not work!!! Muji was on her back with her legs out stiff and eyes wide open so I yelled to get her water and like an ER team we brought her back to life....
Let's not forget my daughter screaming in a hysterical manner "MUJI IS DEAD!"
The result of THAT episode is my daughter's refusal to leave the hamsters home on our next trip. I should tell PETCO to pay for my travel expenses!!! I mean between all three and all of the supplies and cages and more I have spent almost $500.
OH yea....Did I tell you that Chester and Muji had a playdate a few weeks ago and now my daughter Doctor Hamster lady has told me that Muji is pregnant?!!!! How many do they have I ask? "They can have up to 24 momma." OH MY GOD!!!!!!! I'm going to faint.....
"One more thing mommy, once the babies get bigger we will have to separate them into their own cages because they can reproduce right away...."
Silence. SCREAMMMMMM! I'm suing PETCO!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ARGHHHHHHH!!!
Hub Pages Author - GPAGE
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