Animal pals 

Pets take work. They require attention. Their care is an additional, needless expense. Why, then, do so many of us own them often, more than one?

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Brienne Wade
Holland Park

Pets demand a lot. Why have them? They give unconditional love. They're delighted when you come home at night.

Relate a memorable pet experience. Our studio adopted a stray cat that was a sweetheart and a joy. He'd sit on my lap while I worked at the computer. A couple months ago, though, a dog killed him.

What's the most unusual pet you've seen? A college friend had three cockroaches she kept in a cage in her dorm room. She'd actually pet them and talk to them.

What differentiates a good pet from a great pet? One who's just there and one that interacts with your life.

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Carson Campbell
Little Rock, Ark.

Fire alarm technician
Relate an incident of animal abuse you've seen. I'm also a landlord. One of my tenants didn't want her dog any more. She told me she'd taken it to the humane society and connected it with a new owner, but I later found out she took it to some roadside and just dumped it.

Describe a memorable pet experience. I grew up with a dog who loved me and slept with me every night, but she got old and had to be put down because of pneumonia.

Why acquire a pet? Almost all my pets were rescued pets. I wasn't looking for a pet at the time, but it was like running into a friend an accidental relationship, not something I chose.

What's the most unusual pet you've seen? My friend had a monkey. It was like a 3-year-old that you can't control, that does whatever it wants.

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Wade Norris

Political organizer
How did you come by your dog? She'd just been hit by a car. It was night, it was a busy thoroughfare, and she was only seconds away from getting finished off by other cars. I literally stopped traffic to get her off the road.

Have you personally witnessed animal abuse? One time, I had to rescue a bunch of cats from a house that the former resident had left behind. They'd gone over a week without food and water.

What's the difference between a good pet and a great pet? The owner. You see out-of-control pets who run off in all directions, and you see pets who are well-behaved and loving. The difference is in how much time and attention their owners gave them.


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