Did you know the last Sunday of April is National Pet Parents Day? Hooray, because I am one and I bet you are, too…or maybe so in the pawst!

For this week’s Sunday Stills photography challenge, let’s celebrate the pets that make our lives so much richer!

We make a lot of sacrifices for our pets!

In this photo, I had just brought Brodie home from three days of isolation in July 2017, when he was infected by canine parvo-virus. Between the vet bill and worry, I was a hot mess, but relieved when he came home!

Brodie's home and missed his orange pillow.
Brodie’s home and missed his orange pillow.

“There is a very special connection, a unique bond, between a pet and its owner. This unique relationship, which can often last for many years, is often a vital part of the ‘pet parents’ life. Their loved pets are a member of the family.”

National Day Calendar
Aero at 2 months old
Me and my Aero at 2 months old

We love our pets. Between myself and my family, growing up, I have owned a parakeet and lovebird; horses Cookie and Star; cats Streaker, Stormy, and Leon; dogs Buddy, Shotsie, Oreo, and currently, Aero and Brodie. I’m also a grand-pet-parent to my daughter’s cat Nova and my younger daughter’s dog Gideon, who lived with us for many years.

Dog Brodie
A Painnt-edited version of Brodie

All but Aero and Brodie are at the Rainbow Bridge waiting for their pet parents to reunite with them in eternity.

My mother’s hobby was raising collies (Lassie) for show and obedience competitions. At one point my mom and dad had 12 collies on our 4 acres near Portland, Oregon back in 1969-70! As kids, my middle brother and I went to a LOT of dog shows all over the Pacific Northwest and then in San Diego when we moved back. I got familiar with most breeds of dogs and appreciated having dogs around.

No wonder I became a pet parent! And see how much our lives are richer for playing with them.

Aero with me on SUP
Aero with me on SUP
Hans & Brodie on SUP
Good pet parents take turns with dogs on the stand-up paddleboards
Han with Brodie

As proud pet parents, we also share images of our beloved fur-babies on social media. Every day I read or see photos of people’s pets doing something adorable or silly, or when someone has said a tearful goodbye.

They are part of our families.

But as much as we all love our pets, they only give us a few short years. We rescue them, feed them, doctor them, grieve them and love them…forever.

I posted this on Facebook last July when I lost my 13-year old cat Leon, one of the hardest decisions I had to make. He loved to sit on the edge of the chair and rested mostly on my shoulder during his last two days.

“Yesterday I made the almost impossible decision to humanely end my 13-year-old cat’s life. Leon gave us 13 years of fun and frolic. He used up his last life, probably in a fight with another animal which ultimately resulted in an untreatable, massive infection. God has a better plan for the spirits of His lovely creatures and only gives us a few years with them until He takes them back home. RIP my sweet Leon.”

Me and Leon the cat
My last days with Leon.
Leon in happy times
Leon rolling around on the porch in healthier times

Perhaps many of us bloggers have written recent and past stories about our pets, so feel free to include the link in your comments to this post and I will happily read them.

For a WordPress Writing 101 challenge in 2015, I wrote three stories about the life and times of my spaniel/Australian shepherd mix, Oreo. My Oreo Lives Forever summed up the series. To reduce spam, comments are closed on that post but feel free to add a comment to this post if you wish.

And of course, share the link for your current Sunday Stills post by using this hashtag #NationalPetParentsDay to post on social media.

Enjoy this Dogoscope: Your Pet’s Zodiac Sign, courtesy of Nationwide

Provided by Nationwide pet insurance

May’s themes are now available to view on my Sunday Stills page.

Are you a pet parent? Show us and tell us more about your relationship with your pet!

75 thoughts on “Sunday Stills: It’s a #Dog’s Life

  1. Love this! Any good dog mom out there is a friend of mine! A dog is just not a dog, they are family. I have two pit mixes. One I’ve had for 9 years and one I rescued in February. My dogs are my kids and my life. Thank you for sharing your dog mom life with us!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I do feel like our lives are richer because of our pets. People who don’t have them or don’t love them, don’t get it, but it’s a mutually fabulous relationship.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Aw, I could relate to all the feelings you expressed in your post. The photos you chose are perfect. Pets are so special, that’s for sure. We have 2 cats and one dog and they all are about the same age. I dread the year if/when tough decisions will need to be made to help them to the rainbow bridge. Until then, I’m soaking up every furry moment. Including watching movies with them cuddling by my side. Happy National Pet Parents Day to you! https://www.quaintrevival.com/a-movie-date-with-my-dog/

    Liked by 1 person

  4. A beautiful set of photos! Your love for your pets shines through, Terry. 🙂 I had dogs most of my life, as did my mother and grandmother before me. When our beautiful Dalmatian passed away in 2007 (at the age of 15.5; a good, long life!), my husband and I were so devastated, we couldn’t bring ourselves to get another dog. I have many dogs in my life, though, as I run a little “Canine Inn” out of my home. In 2016, I did a month-long series about dogs for the April A to Z Challenge. Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Debbie! Hubby and I turn 60 this year and we’ve decided not to replace them as they move on. Brodie will be around a long time as he is only 2. Your sweet dalmatian indeed lived a long life! What a good idea to theme your A-Z challenge. I’ll be by to check it out!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Absolutely agree with you. Pets enrich our lives immensely. We had to say goodbye to our little dog about a month ago. My husband was really the one who spent time with her they were inseparable so he is finding it hard. We will get another dog though before the summer is out.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Leon–I offer this for those who have had to make the “Final Decision” about their best friend(s). It applies equally to dogs or cats..THE LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT
    OF AN

    by Eugene O’Neill
    Tao House, December 17, 1940

    I, SILVERDENE EMBLEM O’NEILL (familiarly known to my family, friends, and acquaintances as Blemie), because the burden of my years and infirmities is heavy upon me, and I realize the end of my life is near, do hereby bury my last will and testament in the mind of my Master. He will not know it is there until after I am dead. Then, remembering me in his loneliness, he will suddenly know of this testament, and I ask him then to inscribe it as a memorial to me.

    I have little in the way of material things to leave. Dogs are wiser than men. They do not set great store upon things. They do not waste their days hoarding property. They do not ruin their sleep worrying about how to keep the objects they have, and to obtain the objects they have not. There is nothing of value I have to bequeath except my love and my faith. These I leave to all those who have loved me, to my Master and Mistress, who I know will mourn me most, to Freeman who has been so good to me, to Cyn and Roy and Willie and Naomi and—But if I should list all those who have loved me, it would force my Master to write a book. Perhaps it is vain of me to boast when I am so near death, which returns all beasts and vanities to dust, but I have always been an extremely lovable dog.

    I ask my Master and Mistress to remember me always, but not to grieve for me too long. In my life I have tried to be a comfort to them in time of sorrow, and a reason for added joy in their happiness. It is painful for me to think that even in death I should cause them pain. Let them remember that while no dog has ever had a happier life (and this I owe to their love and care for me), now that I have grown blind and deaf and lame, and even my sense of smell fails me so that a rabbit could be right under my nose and I might not know, my pride has sunk to a sick, bewildered humiliation. I feel life is taunting me with having over-lingered my welcome. It is time I said good-bye, before I become too sick a burden on myself and on those who love me. It will be sorrow to leave them, but not a sorrow to die. Dogs do not fear death as men do. We accept it as part of life, not as something alien and terrible which destroys life. What may come after death, who knows? I would like to believe with those my fellow Dalmatians who are devote Mohammedans, that there is a Paradise where one is always young and full-bladdered; where all the day one dillies and dallies with an amorous multitude of houris [lovely nymphs], beautifully spotted; where jack rabbits that run fast but not too fast (like the houris) are as the sands of the desert; where each blissful hour is mealtime; where in long evenings there are a million fireplaces with logs forever burning, and one curls oneself up and blinks into the flames and nods and dreams, remembering the old brave days on earth, and the love of one’s Master and Mistress.
    I am afraid this is too much for even such a dog as I am to expect. But peace, at least, is certain. Peace and long rest for weary old heart and head and limbs, and eternal sleep in the earth I have loved so well. Perhaps, after all, this is best.
    One last request I earnestly make. I have heard my Mistress say, “When Blemie dies we must never have another dog. I love him so much I could never love another one.” Now I would ask her, for love of me, to have another. It would be a poor tribute to my memory never to have a dog again. What I would like to feel is that, having once had me in the family, now she cannot live without a dog! I have never had a narrow jealous spirit. I have always held that most dogs are good (and one cat, the black one I have permitted to share the living room rug during the evenings, whose affection I have tolerated in a kindly spirit, and in rare sentimental moods, even reciprocated a trifle). Some dogs, of course, are better than others. Dalmatians, naturally, as everyone knows, are best. So I suggest a Dalmatian as my successor. He can hardly be as well bred or as well mannered or as distinguished and handsome as I was in my prime. My Master and Mistress must not ask the impossible. But he will do his best, I am sure, and even his inevitable defects will help by comparison to keep my memory green. To him I bequeath my collar and leash and my overcoat and raincoat, made to order in 1929 at Hermes in Paris. He can never wear them with the distinction I did, walking around the Place Vendome, or later along Park Avenue, all eyes fixed on me in admiration; but again I am sure he will do his utmost not to appear a mere gauche provincial dog. Here on the ranch, he may prove himself quite worthy of comparison, in some respects. He will, I presume, come closer to jack rabbits than I have been able to in recent years.
    And for all his faults, I hereby wish him the happiness I know will be his in my old home.
    One last word of farewell, Dear Master and Mistress. Whenever
    you visit my grave, say to yourselves with regret but also with happiness in
    your hearts at the remembrance of my long happy life with you: “Here lies
    one who loved us and whom we loved.” No matter how deep my sleep I shall
    hear you, and not all the power of death can keep my spirit from wagging
    a grateful tail.


  7. I had totally missed that it is International Pet Parents Day today! I feel very good that my beloved Gretchen got to play in the snow today, since it’s her favorite thing to do. I can’t promise you that I’ll write a post today, I accidentally hiked much longer than I planned, and I’m totally exhausted, in a wonderful way. I will add a post to the theme within the next few days. How could I not? 🙂 Love seeing your photos in this post!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Nice set of photos of you and the dogs. I don’t have an offering this week, being currently petless, but I shall be back on board next week no doubt.


  9. Hi Terri,

    It’s so obvious from this post how much you love(d) your pets. What a great theme for the photo challenge. Nice photo moments as well.

    As you know, we love animals as well, pets, and especially dogs. Ours, who have passed away years ago, and others. When we haven’t done a pet sit for a while, we bother other campers to pet their dogs. 🙂

    Our two Australian Shepherd rescue dogs barely made ten years old and both passed away from cancer. We still miss them dearly. If you’re up to reading the blog post about losing our girl, here is the link: http://www.itsirie.com/2009/01/goodbye-sweet-girl.html

    You might need a tissue. A version of the story is part of my memoir…

    Happy pet parent day!


  10. Love your photos with your adorable dogs, Terri. We had the privilege to be pet owners for two fantastic dogs over a twenty year period. Since we put Zoe down in 2015 we haven’t had a dog. We miss having one but get our ‘doggie fix’ by visiting our grand dog – a delightful golden doodle named Lottie. Here is a post I wrote about when we had to make that ‘final decision’ for Zoe. https://www.shallowreflections.com/a-pet-owners-most-dreadful-day/

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I was a pet owner in the PAWST and miss having a pup around. It is very challenging (although not impossible) to sail globally with a pet so I’ll just have to wait until I drop the hook. I used to take the pup sailing when I was land based and he loved it.

    The picture of you will little Aero at 2 months is especially adorable.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. As you know, I wouldn’t be without my two pups who are a big part of the family. Not only do they give us lots of love, but they’ve also bought us into contact with many new friends while out dog walking. And we’ve also discovered new places with them that we’d probably had never visited if we hadn’t had the dogs.

    They’ll be writing a post and linking to this week’s theme, Terri. Thanks for the idea.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. A beautiful set of photographs Terri and such a wonderful challenge! Aero and Brodie look adorable and Leon looks like such a kind soul. It’s never easy when we have to say goodbye and we treasure every moment we have together. We’ve been ‘pet parents’ for as long as I can remember and we wouldn’t have it any other way. Our contribution for this week is here: https://whippetwisdom.com/2019/04/29/haiku-heaven-on-earth/

    Liked by 1 person

  14. What wonderful stories about your beloved pets and the way they’re part of your life. I’ve been without a pet for too long and am hoping to get a dog, but things always seem upended around here. I can’t bring a new pet to such instability so I salve my hunger for animal companionship with enjoying my neighbor’s pets.

    BTW, the enhanced photo of Brodie is really gorgeous!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I am a cat mama. I never knew I even liked cats until a couple of feral kittens showed up at our house in the country and decided to adopt me. They became my friends and I learned that I was a bit of a cat whisperer. Cozy was my little shadow, and I was devastated when I had to put her down. Gatsby is my beloved companion- my husband calls him my boyfriend. He comes when I call him and gives me kisses on demand. We thought he needed a friend when Cozy died so we adopted a rescue cat, but Sassenach has not become his friend. She was very aloof but is warming up to me. She gets jealous of Gatsby and hisses at him. I’ve given up on them becoming friends, but they coexist. Where would we be without our pets?

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