Pets are Child Substitutes: Kids – Part 2

Apparently popular wisdom tells us that the human drive to have a child is so great that all those doomed to be childless make do with animals.
Unsatisfied single women become Crazy cat ladies (this sometimes happens to effeminate single men too) Gay male couples are also assigned cats and for some reason chickens, lesbians of course have dogs and bachelors have something that will attract their desired sexual partner.

As a bisexual woman about to adopt a dog I of course take exception to this stereotype…

On the one hand I have seen in many people (and recognise in myself) the desire to lavish attention and affection  on a creature somehow both beholden to you and unconditionally accepting of you – I have indeed seen too many cases of people abusing that love and trust and/or deluding themselves about the extent of its return.
But on the other I would argue that the companionship of an animal and its role in one’s life are so utterly different to that of a child who will (one hopes) grow to live without you and outlive you that the two are incomparable. I cannot imagine how the desire for one could ever be fulfilled by having the other… fairly sure I can’t take a child for walks, bury my face its fur, complain to it without a word of complaint in return, sleep with it curled at my feet; nor teach my dog to read or listen to it tell me stories.

I will however note some similarities about dogs and babies – they both require you to rearrange your house and buy special equipment in anticipation of their arrival and subsequent mess creation and breakages, they both expect you to keep anti-social hours and limit your holiday plans, they both cost you more than you can ever plan for, eat you out of house and home and demand unending love.
As you might guess we have been busily removing low-level clutter and breakables, stocking up on cleaning products, blankets and food and otherwise getting ready for the arrival of our rescue dog this weekend!

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