Kids & Pets
December 13, 2017
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Even pets give thanks at this time of the year

By: Mickey Zeldes
November 24, 2017

Every year at this time, as we are giving thanks for all we have, I would like to speak for your pets and thank you for the love and care you shower upon them -- it is noticed and appreciated! This year those that escaped the fires have even more to be grateful for. The fact that you prioritized grabbing your pets as you fled your homes shows the commitment you’ve made to them and how they were counted among your family members when you were checking that everyone was accounted for. For those pets that got loose, thank you for checking in the shelters to find them, and not giving up. Your pets really couldn’t ask for more than that! 

Here are some other things our pets are grateful for – in their own words.

Thank you for taking care of my everyday needs. I have fresh water available at all times and enough good-quality food to keep me healthy (OK, I know I always beg for more treats, but thank you for watching my waistline!). My litter box is scooped and cleaned regularly, which I truly appreciate. No one likes a dirty bathroom! You think a dirty litter box stinks? – with 200 million odor-sensitive cells in my nostrils (compared to a human who has only 5 million) I’m very sensitive to a dirty or used litterbox.

Thank you for caring enough to take me to a veterinarian regularly and not just waiting until I am sick. Preventative care like dentals, flea control, heart worm protection medications and more, are what keeps me in tip top shape. The veterinary field is now recognizing the importance for pain control and management, especially for elderly pets. Just because we mask our discomfort doesn’t mean we don’t feel the aches and pains of growing old. Constant pain can make us grumpy and snappy. It doesn’t mean we should be left alone, it means we need help!

Speaking of movement, thank you for playing with me and making sure I get some exercise and mental stimulation on a regular basis. I know winter is coming so perhaps the long walks are out but you are clever at coming up with new ways to keep me active. I love playing chase and finding the food you hide around the house. It is so much more fun than just eating out of a dish (that only lasts a few seconds – I know I eat too fast but it’s hard to slow down!). If you want more ideas of inexpensive interactive toys I heard they have a handout at the shelter!

Thank you for loving me enough to give me a way to be returned to you should I ever become lost. A microchip is a small radio chip that is encoded with a unique number and implanted under the skin as a permanent identification. All the owner information is stored in a national 24-hour database so it’s easy to update and keep current.  The fires have shown how important this protection can be as the shelters struggle to reunite the 100 plus strays they are currently housing.  Of course a simple collar and name tag can often do the trick and save me a trip to a shelter or vet to be scanned. I like the look of a pretty collar and it shows the world that I am loved. The best part is if we live in Rohnert Park or Cotati both a personalized ID tag and a microchip are free through the shelter!

I wish every pet was as lucky as I am but I know there are some at the shelter without a family to love and care for them.  If you want to get me a brother or sister I hope you will look here first!  There’s always more love to share and I’ll try to not be too possessive. I am so lucky!

Upcoming Events:  

No More Lost Pets – free microchips and pet ID tags for residents of Rohnert Park and Cotati City. Stop by the shelter during our open hours with your pet to get one! The shelter is open Wed. 1-6:30 p.m., Thur.-Fri.-Sat. 1-5:30 p.m. and Sun 1-4:30 p.m.

Fix-it Clinics – Free spay and neutering for cats; and $60 dog surgeries (up to 80 lbs.) for low-income Rohnert Park and Cotati residents. Call 588-3531 for an appointment.


Mickey Zeldes is the supervisor at the Rohnert Park Animal Shelter. She can be contacted at