As a parent I am convinced that getting a pet for your children is more than an act of love. Who really wants to take care of another pooping thing, particularly one not the same species? When we are encouraged (pushed) by a child to get a pet, we hesitate because we know that the addition to the household will incrementally increase poop, throw up and pee. While darling animals charm us, we get that gut feeling that we soon will be making a wrong decision. What is practical about bringing a creature into our family that has even a more difficult time than our children to grasp the concept of “acceptable behavior”?
The British love their dogs and appear to have a respectful relationship with them. They seem to be able to love and care for their pets with grace. Pets of the royal family join in walks at home and sometimes hunt and travel with the family.
Queen Elizabeth’s father, King George VI, gave his daughters a Corgi. "Dookie" was popular in their family and was described as “unquestionably the character of the Princesses’ delightful canine family” and a “born sentimentalist." Wow, I would like that to be said and felt about a human I know! Such a thought might be-“Uncle George is the character of the family. George is a born sentimentalist and provides, if you will, the positive emotional glue in our family."
Dogs are cherished by the Royal Family and have been given as valued presents to mark a rite of passage. The Queen received a Corgi named Susan for her 18th birthday. The tradition of keeping Corgis continues today. She now owns four; Holly, Linnet, Monty and Willow.
How can we hope to achieve such a graceful existence with our pets? Do the Brits think such things out more clearly before they commit to such a decision? Are plans put into place to accommodate the change? What happens when mom or dad, caught after nightly prayers with one of the kids is beseeched (yes I said it) with that look and request for an animal? I remember it took two months of nightly prayers to get my horse.
Well, I can tell you the tradition our family has enjoyed with our pets. Royal chaos!