Editor’s Memo: People can change…especially for pets


I did not grow up an animal lover. Strange, since I grew up in a household that always had at least one dog and one cat. Still, they were never my dog or cat. Usually our family pets favored my mom (rightly so) and in turn, I just never bonded with any of them.

For years I watched friends adopt fur babies and thought “How crazy! Why invite chaos (and accidents, and chewed shoes) into your life?”

Fast forward to 2012, married for four years and new homeowners, my husband and I started to have that “what’s next” feeling. Knowing we didn’t want human children, furry children seemed like the only option. Still, something stopped us from pulling the trigger. That is until news broke of a puppy mill bust on the west side of the state. We had just returned from vacation to see hundreds of sick and dirty (yet adorable) puppy faces staring at us from the TV. When it was confirmed that because of the high volume of dogs in need, our area animal shelter would receive some of the puppies, we knew one of those dogs belonged with us.

And so, one spring day a friend sent a text saying the puppies had arrived at our local animal shelter. I bolted from my desk, drove there as fast as I could and met three of the cutest puppies I’d ever seen. I was put into the play room with one of them. Because they were all sick and had terrible eye infections, the first puppy – a black fur ball – stayed in his corner. I stayed in mine. He was likely traumatized on top of being sick. Although I understood, my newly discovered dream of pet ownership did not seem promising. I didn’t want a dog that didn’t want me.

The shelter team member didn’t hesitate to bring in another puppy – this white snowball had the appropriate name of Yeti. Despite having all the same afflictions, this little guy had spunk. Although weak and tired, he grabbed a toy from the floor and brought it over to me. I. Was. In. Love. A few hours later when my husband met Yeti, their bond was instant.

While the first few weeks were a struggle, he was ill and rarely slept, Yeti grew into a happy and healthy dog. His habit of bringing us a toy each time he sees us has stuck. And new tricks like his ability to unwrap presents (when given permission) have developed.

While he can certainly be naughty at times (we let him get away with a lot) we love Yeti with all of our hearts. Once a hesitant pet owner, I now know that we will never be without a pet again.

Pets offer unconditional love, hours of entertainment and a loyalty that’s hard to match. I know that if you’re reading this, you completely understand. Pets are our family.

It’s for these reasons and more that the team at View Newspaper Group started The Pet Press. This free magazine can be found on newsstands throughout Lapeer and Genesee Counties twice a year. We’ll share stories on local pets, unusual pets, rescue stories, features on adoption locations and much more. But we can’t do it without you! If you have a great pet story to share please contact me at ecaswell@mihomepaper.com.

Happy tails!

­— Emily P. Caswell

Editor, The Pet Press


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