Are you a pet person?

I was a pretty lucky kid growing up. I had your traditional upbringing with a Mum and a Dad and a brother and a sister. We lived in a cul-de-sak. But when I was in year one my parents got divorced and we became latch-key kids as Mum started up her own successful business and worked her butt off.

But there was one constant in this time of transition. Sam the labrador.

Sam had been in our family since I could remember. It was during the time when dogs wandered the streets and rooted each other with gay abandon resulting in some very unusual results.

I give you the corgi-german shepherd cross!

Sam, being a labrador, had a ferocious appetite. Back in the 70’s, a lot of people had a daily bread and milk delivery and if someone accidentally left the gate open, Sam would go for a bit of an adventure and go and collect all of the neighbours bread. We would discover a dozen loaves on the back door and have to scoop them up and walk the streets trying to find their rightful owners. Sam had a sister, of the feline persuasion. My dad had found a one day old kitten at the racecourse where he worked, lying alongside it’s dead sibling. As we were a family of animal tragics, he bought it home. Mum, who was a nurse, then devoted her time to pull the kitten out of the shadows of death by feeding it hourly with an eye dropper.

The kitten was pure white, so we called her Kimba after KIMBA THE WHITE LION.

When my Mum later married my Step Dad, we came as a package deal. My step dad was widowed with a daughter who wouldn’t say boo to a goose. They had a big house with no pets and in we bowled. Three kids, a feisty Mother, a dog, a cat and two horses. We all saved each other in a way.

Kimba and Sam grew older and older. Kimba ended up having both of her ears cut off due to skin cancer and one day Sam just couldn’t stand up. Losing your pets is a huge big deal. Your childhood pets will always stay with you, don’t you think?

Our first Woog family cat Wilson was a rescue who was with us for only two years before we discovered he had terminal cancer. I then vowed NEVER to get another pet because of the pain you feel when you lose them. But then Mum turned up with a small black kitten. That was nine years ago, and since then Isobel Barbara has joined us and I would not have it any other way. All I need is a tiny goat and I think my menagerie would be complete.

Are you a cat or a dog person?

How many animals do you have?