My Dear Beloved Pets:

This is what you need to know to get along well in my household. That's right pets. I love you dearly, but after all, this is my house. I own it. You live here WITH me. Dear pets, my home would be incomplete without you, but we need some simple pet ground rules!

To My Pets, Let's Talk About Rules

After all. This is my home. You are my dear beloved pets. You actually all get along with each other pretty well, being cats and dogs and having such obviously different personalities. But it's time we had a heart-to-heart. You know, a pet owner conversation with you, the pets. And yes, I'm the pet owner. It's really not that hard. I will give you some direction, some expectations. And all you need to do is follow along, give a little, and - HEY - pay attention, I'm talking here. You can groom yourself later. Okay, let's get started!

cat cleaning tongue bath

Rules for My Pets

The dishes with the paw print are yours and contain your food. The other dishes are mine and contain my food. Please note, though you are my pets, placing a paw print in the middle of my plate and food does not stake a claim for it becoming your food and dish, nor do I find that aesthetically pleasing in the slightest.

The stairway was not designed by NASCAR and is not a pet racetrack. Beating me to the bottom is not the object. Tripping me doesn't help because I fall faster than you can run.

I cannot buy anything bigger than a king sized bed. My pets, I am very sorry about this. Do not think I will continue sleeping on the couch to ensure your comfort.

Dogs and cats can actually curl up in a ball when they sleep. It is not necessary to sleep perpendicular to each other stretched out to the fullest extent possible. I also know that pets sticking tails straight out and having tongues hanging out the other end to maximize space is nothing but sarcasm.

That's Right, We Have Pet Rules in My House

For the last time, there is not a secret exit from the bathroom. If by some miracle I beat you there and manage to get the door shut, it is not necessary to claw, whine, bark, meow, try to turn the knob or get your pet paw under the edge and try to pull the door open. I must exit through the same door I entered!

Also, I have been using the bathroom for years – canine or feline pet attendance is not mandatory.   The proper order is, kiss me, then go smell the other dog or cat's butt. I cannot stress this enough!

To return the kindness of your obedience, my dear pets, I have posted the following on our front door so visitors to our home know what the rules are here:

dog black white staring

Rules for Non-Pet Owners Who Visit

(and Like to Complain About My Pets):

My pets live here. You don't.

If you don't want hair from my pets on your clothes - stay off the furniture. (That's why they call it "fur"niture.)

I like my pets a lot better than I like most people.

To you, they are animals. To me, my pets are my adopted children who are short, hairy and walk on all fours. Although they don't speak clearly, they communicate extremely well.

Dogs and cats are better than kids. They eat less, don't ask for money all the time, are easier to train, usually come when called (this does not apply to cats), never drive your car, don't hang out with drug-using friends, don't smoke or drink, don't worry about having to buy the latest fashions, don't wear your clothes, and don't need a gazillion dollars for college.

Also, if they get pregnant, you can sell their kids.

And to my beloved pets:  Thanks for being you!

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