Sunday, 13 December 2015

Why don't I get a dog of my own?

Remember! Melon's Animal Adventures is now at our new web address, You may need to add the new URL to your feed reader so we don't lose you!

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This is a good time to answer a few of the questions I was asked before my hiatus.

A few of you have asked if I'd like a dog of my own.

A friend of mine, Mom of the acd6pack, asked:
with the support of your family, would a rescue dog of your own be a possibility?  I know you've thought of it in the past and I can't help but wonder if maybe having Gatsby at your home might have made the family see how much fun a dog can be and also that maybe it helped you?
I would love a dog of my own. But it's not a possibility right now. I have dysthymia, which is a chronic (long-term) form of depression, as well as multiple anxiety disorders. Because of this I haven't been able to finish my studies or keep a job. What does that have to do with a dog, you ask? Well, they are just examples which show how disruptive my illness is, and which emphasize that when I say I don't get out of bed or feed myself some days, or I forget to water my plants so they die, I mean it. This means that having a dog isn't going to work, no matter how much I love it or how much care and training I give it on my good days.

A dog is not a plant, people like to say. It's hard to ignore a dog. I know. But my guinea pigs were living, breathing, squeaking creatures and I managed to neglect them more than I'd like. I was lucky that Mom swooped in to care for them - Mom did almost all of the daily care for Cocoa for the last few years.

I need a hooman to hold my foodables for me!

My family are reasonably supportive and helped me out with Gatsby the couple of weeks she was with us, but as we all know, a dog is a 15+ year commitment. I'm can't make that commitment right now and I can't make it on behalf of my parents, who aren't after a dog. Due to my illness I'm also living at home, which means that it's not really fair to my parents to bring in a dog when they aren't after one. (And, of course, having no income means that I definitely can't go out and make a 15-year financial commitment.)

So, to conclude -- I would love a dog of my own.

I do get sad that it's not on the cards, because having Gatsby confirmed what we suspected -- having a dog around can help a lot. While Gatsby was here, I exercised, I slept well (no sleep meds at all!), and I had someone and something to focus on other than myself. But it caused some difficulties, too (more on that later).

Gatsby made a good walking buddy

But I (have to) accept that it's not on the cards right now, just like I (have to) accept not having the life I want right now. I (can only) do what anyone else with chronic illness does -- just put one foot in front of the other.


  1. Hey Melon, glad the blog move went well!
    I think you should be proud of yourself for your insight into your life and the reasons for not adding a dog right now. I wish more people were as thoughtful when it came to adding an animal to their lives. I am certain that when the time is right, you (and your family) will be an awesome home for another pet.


Thoughts? I'd love to hear them!