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Those who love their pets tend to enjoy all animals. Our animal owners are no different. Check in on News-Herald staffers Robin Palmer and Cheryl Sadler as they share their own animal tales and announce upcoming events in Lake and Geauga counties.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

A certain type of person

You know me. I’m hitting the floor to pet whatever critter is approaching. I’m skipping the movies portraying animal death. I’m sacrificing space so my pets can stretch out.

I’m a proud pet owner. It’s the personal piece I wear most prominently on my sleeve in the newsroom. And it's for this reason that I now introduce myself as one of your trusty new local pet bloggers.

I'd like to thank Woodrow, Crackers, McKenzie, Kiwi, Kitty, Rocky, Sam, Alani, Sherbert, Ivy, Sky, Mei Ling, Ping, Muppet, Sistercat and the Academy for this honor.

Maybe you’re like me and also have as many pictures of your pets as you have of your family, or enjoy animals’ company more than most of your friends’, or find your pets so much more thoughtful than everyone else’s.

Maybe you’re not like me at all. Maybe you’re allergic, or dislike extraneous responsibility, or don’t see the need, or critters with furry, leathery or slimy skin give you the willies.

Maybe you're somewhere in the middle. Whatever your reasons, pet ownership is a loaded decision and a huge responsibility and I don’t blame you.

In my life it just happens to fit. I've escaped adolescence with the understanding that I’ll never know most things, but one thing I already know is the unconditional love of an animal. And I’ve been fortunate to know it from the first time I came home until this morning before work. It’s in the choice of my lap for a place to relax, those innocent eyes in times of pessimism, the silent trust of a belly rub – or for those who don’t have pets, tender moments far enough from a meal that it’s clear food isn’t the motivation for the behavior.

Maybe you’ve experienced this relationship, too. If so, welcome to your forum.

This blog will be a place for sharing and learning. (This is what we do for a living, after all.) But we also hope it will be a place for discussion. Every pet owner comes to the table with opinions on collars, litter, training, enrichment, shelter, current events, food or whatever. We also have our own special stories to tell - reflections on those non-food-oriented behaviors that enrich each of our lives on a daily basis. Please make topic suggestions and share what you know after each posting.

The transfer of tips and ideas is the most classic celebration of our unique bond. On behalf of my fellow pet owners and the marvelous animals we represent, we look forward to hearing yours.

-- Sandra M. Klepach


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