Friday, May 11, 2012

Fibromyalgia and Pets

 



Pets are cute and loveable.  They help to have the time pass.  They can help us open cupboards, move objects out of our walking path, sit with us during our morning coffee break, and they can even help us forget we have pain.

This is a picture of Onyx.  He's the newest edition to our family.  He came along because Sport, myself, and my little ones, Olivia and Brittanny, missed Diamond.  We mourned for several months and when we were ready, Onyx showed up in our lives.  He was a rescue in a literal sense.  His Momma had unwanted babies and when a friend of mine found out that Momma had babies-- she jumped for the chance to allow me to have one.  We almost had Momma as a side bonus and Momma was gorgeous but she didn't play well with Sport or Topaz.  She actually tried to rule the roost over them and that would not have worked because Topaz and Sport are too timid.  They would have allowed Momma to beat them up and that wouldn't do so we unfortunately had to allow Momma to find another home where she could rule the roost alone.  Momma is good.  She is with a man who is single and loves nothing more than to give Momma the time and attention she craves.

As you can see, this blog posting will be about pets and how they can help you with Fibro.  Some people with Fibromyalgia may be leery about owning pets because they get too sick too often to care for one and they wind up giving up before they even start.  I hope my post today not only helps you to find the perfect pet, but to convince you that it's okay to go out and get it.

I'll discuss the most common pets, dogs, cats, and fish because that's what I've kept and I'm comfortable talking about.  BUT if your heart is set on another little button of a creature-- by all means-- research and go for it!

Dogs are man's best friends.  They truly are by that statement.  They follow you WHEREVER you go.  This can be good at times AND it can also be bad at times.  If you have a lot going on in your house-- like kids, elderly person(s), and you being ill-- pick a breed of dog that is easy to train.  I have a Cocker Spaniel which I heard through the dog kennel shows was the easiest to train.  I have to agree.  Sport is better than my 4 year old at picking up his toys, staying, sitting, moving, heeling, walking, and even going potty LOL!

Now I must admit, I was not a big dog fan the first time my husband and children came to me with the idea.  I actually hated it.  I knew cats.  They were easy to train.  You show them the litter and you were basically done with training.  I didn't think I wanted to spend a ton of hours on a dog that probably wouldn't get any of my commands.

Well, I'm going to say right here in my VERY public blog that I was wrong to think that a dog can't be trained well quickly.  Yes, the training took longer than a cat-- and believe me when I tell you I felt VERY funny praising my dog REPEATEDLY for the first couple of months being a soul cat owner because my cats Diamond and Topaz WOULDN'T let me live it down LOL!

Managing Sport's training has been tough lately, though.  We've had a few major problems we would have never seen as dog owners.  Sport got bit by another dog who was vicious.  We couldn't see that coming.  I was just doing what I normally did.  I walked him around our neighborhood.  He healed from the actual wounds but the psychological scars run VERY deep in this dog. 

This dog will not walk with me alone anymore.  He remembers what happened to him.  Now please don't misunderstand me-- I AM NOT telling all of you this story to deter you from getting a dog.  PLEASE don't.  They are wonderful animals and they are very gentle creatures.  They are so gentle that I use kit gloves when it comes to Sport now.

I groom him, I walk him with the kids and his BFF, the french bull dog across the street whose owner happens to be one of my best friends.  I also give him a lot of extra attention that he needs as a dog because dogs can and will forget like a toddler what you said or say.

Cats are different.  Cats can be sly, savvy, on the prowl, aloof, or really WHATEVER they please.  They act like you are lucky to have them around-- really.  Some breeds are very talkative, sensitive, and want a lot of attention from you.  Persian, Burmese, and Bangel cats are these kinds of certain breeds.  Others can range because it depends on the kitten. 

Domestic kittens are not always domestic.  Many males (up to 7) can impregnant 1 female cat so given this statistic it's hard to tell what you might actually have on your hands as a cat.  My Diamond acted like a Bombay.  Do a search as best as you can with your cat's characteristics.  I was lucky because Diamond proposed a lot from his Bombay heritage.  He retrieved paper, he opened cabinets for me, he sensed my every move, his emotions filled his face-- ie you could read him, he was VERY independent, he accepted a new cat as long as the cat fit into his life, and he accepted a dog too-- just as long as the dog knew what to do.  Diamond was great.

Topaz is another pet of mine. She loves the constant of life.  She's a perisan and persians do.  They will be happy with others to a point.  They will hiss sometimes if they feel a need but if they love you lots it won't be loud. Nor will they persue.

Fish can be kept in any house hold. You clean the tank once a month.  Certain fish will not habitat with others and I suggest you email me because some people are new at their job and they usually put knowledgeable fish people at a stance and that's not fair.

My WHOLE point is that people with Fibromyalgia CAN have and maintain pets.  It's VERY possible.  Research what you'd like, find out the best possible care and then do what you can to keep it.  Most animals will allow a little modified care if you are impaired.  My animals do for me.

Stay fabulous!

Kimberley


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