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Cats Versus Dogs, An Age Old Question

Updated on June 2, 2017

Cocoa

Always A Cat Person

I had both cats and dogs growing up, but I always seemed to lean towards cats. One reason is you don't have to walk them, or take them out if you are away. Another reason was they are so soft and cuddly (when they want to be). We always had indoor-outdoor cats which kept them busy with play during the day, and when they came in at night affectionate. Having just gotten a kitten a few months ago I have learned the outside kitty is no longer accepted as the norm. Too many things can happen by disease or other means. I was confused at this and although I understand the reasoning, it just doesn't fit into what I always believed. Now the kitty house is supposed to replace the outdoor play, and you the playmate. I have mixed feelings about this which we will discuss later in the article.

Hannah Girl

In The Clouds

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Hannah

Black ears, with all the markings of a BorderCollie. I allowed her to be a lapdog which eventually became a problem sometimes. She would run like the wind, and no one could catch her and then came back all crusted with things nobody wanted to smell. As she got older, she settled into a more laid back dog. Hannah loved Christmas. As soon as the tree was put up she would jump for joy. She would open her gifts and always inspect the ones to other people, in case they happened on one of hers.We never realized how bad she was hurting, thinking she was just getting older having some arthritis in her hip. One day she fell and had trouble getting up and my heart went out to her. We took her to the vet who operated on her hip. She did better for awhile. Then one morning we awoke to find her stuck under the bed. Once we helped her get out, she pulled herself in an army crawl from room to room following us everywhere we went. Just as she always did. We had to put her pain above all our wants and allowed her to sleep forever. We took a drive that day. I kept looking at the clouds thinking of her and wishing we could see her well, one last time. I took pictures of some of the clouds that looked a little like dogs. The last stop we made I randomly took one more.There she was.If you look closely, you can see her long black ears, white face and a black nose. Only some people could see her in the picture, but I did. I considered it a gift from God.

A Blessing I Didn't Expect


Within a few weeks of Hannah's passing my daughter wanted to go and see a Bernese Mountain Dog pup. We saw her online for less than they typically go for., and even though I did not want another dog, I was curious, so I went with her. The lady who had her wanted us just to see her, with no pressure. We had already told the breeder the expense of our last dog had drained us and even at a much-reduced price we still could not afford her. I had never seen a Bernese Mountain dog before. She was beautiful with the most loving soft brown eyes. when I got down to pet her my eyes still full of tears, from Hannah, she still took my breath away. Beautiful dog but as I said not for us. The breeder asked again if we wanted her, free to a good home. She had hip surgery as a pup and had to be an inside dog because she couldn't play rough with the other pups or be bred. The online price was to protect her from being sold to an unknown. So we came home with our first purebred doggie. She became my daily buddy for the last few years. Her eyes and her gentle spirit are ingenious to her breed. I was so impressed that the breeder wanted someone to just love her, even though they had incurred so much expense for her.I realized then that they had a loving heart, just like Catori.


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Catori My Last Child

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A Gentle Giant


She was a gentle Giant. Because I was not working anymore, and we only had one car, I became a full-time dog mommy. Her issues with always being in the home instead of the kennel made her very sensitive to being left alone too long. Even though she was very gentle, her size and preference for only me and my husband became an issue when we were gone for too long. She was often shy, but when given a chance to get to know a person they became her friend for life. An older neighbor loved to walk, and we became walking buddies and Catori also fell in love with her. She would even keep her on days we were away too long. When she moved away, Catori still tried to stop at her house for every walk. I took her for a visit at her new apartment and found out she was afraid of steps. We had to coax her, but she went up them. Because I asked her to. I know without a doubt she would give her life for me if need be., and the love she showed me was proof there could never be a dog like her again. She wasn't just a pet, she was my best friend.


A Hole In Our Home

I told my husband I did not want another dog when her time comes because it hurts too much. I didn't expect it to come so soon. At six and a half, it just seemed way too young. We could tell she was sick and not holding down food, the blood platelet count at the vet was low. He suggested an antibiotic in case it was a virus. Also, he added a steroid to build her up and help her body recharge itself. We also gave her nourishing dog food to help build up her digestive tract. When we took her in for her rechecks her platelet counts were still not where they should be.We decided to go ahead and get an X-ray and Sonogram to make sure what was going on inside.Even though we had told ourselves we had to cap spending, we just had to know for sure. Several nodules confirmed our vet"s suspicion that it was cancer. Without a biopsy, we could not know for sure what kind. But the kind didn't matter to us. The higher dose of steroids gave us over a month to say goodbye, time that was precious. Reality hit us that as the steroids were only a temporary fix. Even as she continued downhill, she still tried her hardest to do everything we asked. There comes a time in every dog or pets life that you know it's not fair to let them suffer so you can keep them. Hard as it was, we had to say goodbye. My gentle giant has left an enormous hole in our hearts, that no other dog could ever fill.




With Her Sweater After She Had Her Belly Shaved

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Goodbye My Gentle Giant

We were there for her until the end. Her eyes looking at us like she felt sorry to leave us? It is just like her to put our needs before hers. The vet was very gracious explaining what would happen and gave us time in between each step.When it came to the last step I wanted to leave, but I saw her struggling still to see me. So I held her head and sang our goofy song with my eyes closed she took her last breath.We appreciated the very caring vet that stayed open and with us until we had strengtht to let her go. Our tears are still coming in spurts a little every day. But that night a piece of our hearts left with her.It was so very painful.

So will I give into finding another dog? As I think about the summer without her beside me every day wherever I go, going for walks without her by my side. I do not believe we will.

I think I will get a large cat. I still like cats, and I am sure I will be heartbroken again. But a dog's love is different. They give every moment of their life to you, and when they go they take a piece of you with them. I invite you to share your pet stories. Most of us have one, and even though their time on earth is usually less than ours, we love them.


Cocoa No Longer a Ktten

My Kitten Cocoa

As I said earlier I did get a kitten. She is the sweetest baby. Even though people say that you can train a cat to walk with you, I just can't see it working. Has anyone ever tried it? Because she is inside all day she gets bored and scratches up things occasionally. She will go from the sweetest to the wildest at least twice a day. That is how cats are and I know that. Even her waking me up by jumping on my head doesn't bother me.But I can't seem to adapt to the cat litter and inside energy. They always used their cat litter inside, but not exclusively. So the jury is still out on how I feel about having a cat vs dog. I love them both.

Up Date

Cocoa has grown into a beautiful cat. She goes out in the morning only, (I think she is afraid of the outdoors) then comes in to sleep all day. Oh, the life of a cat. She does have one strange characteristic though, she doesn't like her water in her dish. She waits until someone goes in the bathroom and drinks from the tub spout. Very demanding that we come when called but so are most cats. We love her so that's what counts.

Sheba

Sheba

My daughter received a kitten when she was three that grew up with her. She always went outside in the morning and in every night. Yes she had some fights, usually she won. Once we had to take her to the vet and she recovered. She also hunted and that I hated, but after a few gifts I told her "No that's bad ." she still did it, but didn't show me. The year after this picture was taken, she did get sick and died. She was 15. The horrible thing about it was, for the first time in all those years I put tinsel on the tree. Because she never bothered the tree anymore I didn't think about her eating it, I hope it wasn't me that caused her death. As we drove to school, "I'll be Home For Christmas " played on the radio. Until this day that song reminds me of Sheba, the cat we all loved.

What Do You Think?

It may just take time for me to adjust to an indoor cat. I did let her out one day and kept an eye on her. She loved it, and didn't go too far, but I felt afraid for her. I never felt like that before since all my cats did both. Let me know about your stories.

Are Large Breed Dogs Worth The Shorter Life?

Not all large breed dogs die early. Most still have a life expectancy lower than the smaller breeds. My love for big dogs is just inbred into me I guess. Sometimes a mixed variety will do better. It all depends on the individual. Progress is being made on the Bernese along with other large breeds due to more research which is wonderful. We were blessed with a breeder who put love over profit, or we would probably never had a purebred.That is the kind of breeder you want .


Very Playful Sometimes Forget Their Size. The Toddler Was Not Hurt in this Video

She Was Worth It

Even though her years were short on this earth, I would do it again in a minute if I could have a dog like her again. She was so obedient to all we asked, and a very loyal loving breed. It could be because she was inside most of her life, but her sensitive nature taught me so much. She could tell when I was sad, mad or sick, and was always by my side.This gentle giant breed is a wonderful dog, but may not live as long as you wish. I still think it was worth every minute.

Bernese Mountain Dog Web Site

This site will not only tell you more about Bernese but you can compare yourself to both them and other dogs. Fun site !



Bernese Mountain Dog Breed Information - American Kennel Club

Bernese Life Expectancy


Compared to breeds of similar size as well as purebred dogs in general, the Bernese is one of the short-lived dog breeds. The average life expectancy of a Bernese Mountain Dog is approximately 7 to 8 years. Although progress is being made and many are living until ten.Most other breeds of a similar size have median longevities of 10–11 years.In a 2004 UK survey, the longest-lived of 394 deceased Bernese Mountain Dogs died at the age of 15.2 years.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernese_Mountain_Dog

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