Editor's Notebook: When picking out a pet, younger is not always better
By Debra Utterback
Published: Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012, 9:30 p.m.
While waiting to buy stamps at the Sewickley post office, I started talking to a man there about pets.
They're a great common denominator, right? Either you're a “pet person” or you're not. Those of us who are, like to talk about it.
I happen to fall into the category of believing every house should be home to the pitter-patter of paws.
The man at the post office was praising local animal shelters. He said when his 19-year-old cat died, he headed to the Western Pennsylvania Humane Society to find a new feline companion for his family.
Unlike many others who seek out cute and curious kittens, this man, a veteran who served in Iraq, passed up the young felines and stopped in front of the cage of a 6-year-old cat that reminded him of his beloved pet. The cat was clawing at the bars.
Someone watching warned him: “That cat looks mean.”
Someone else might have moved past the cage. He didn't.
He told the onlooker the cat wasn't mean, it just needed to be out of the cage. He adopted the cat, took it home and found the fur ball to be just what he expected: a loving and great addition to the family.
Four paws to that man for giving a home to a deserving older animal.
It would be easy to pass up the aging pets and seek out the young animals. Who can resist adorable, playful puppies or kittens? Everyone wants to see their pet grow from puppy to adult dog, right?
Well, grown dogs rock. From my experience, they're already trained and ease right into the family, tails wagging and tongues hanging. They learn quickly, adjust easily to a new routine and they're eager to please.
The Humane Society, Animal Friends and rescue groups such as Three Rivers Greyhounds of Pittsburgh make it easy to find adoptable dogs, cats and other pets. They sometimes give discounts for pets older than 1 year.
Of course, there are plenty of puppies and kittens available for those to prefer to go that route. They need homes, too.
But I think gray around the whiskers is better.
Debra Utterback is an editor for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-324-1403 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Sewickley Herald honors: Memorial Day celebration crew recognized
- Leetsdale park, boat ramp could see upgrades
- Keep your family organized with a command center
- Quaker Valley property owners could face tax increase
- Quaker Valley students extend their school day — willingly
- Photos: Gone fishin’ in Bell Acres
- Photos: Easter egg hunting in Sewickley
- RMU class holds pie-eating contest benefit
- Quaker Valley board to begin interviewing superintendent candidates