Apparently it's Pet Parent Day...makes me want to be violently sick actually...the thought of my being the rabbits Mummy. Or the cats for that matter...it's slightly peculiar to refer to your pet animals as your fur-babies...they're not bloody babies...they're cats and dogs and pot bellied pigs and they catch mice and grunt and dig holes and dribble and spit and smell and let off loud bottom belches when you have company and shed hair that clogs up the vaccum cleaner and hump the visiting priests leg and hurl themselves at the front door in a perfect frenzy when the postie calls...and cats poo in the flowerbeds and dogs cock their leg on every blade of grass when you're out for a walk and square up to enormous Rottweilers that are three times their size...

Cats bring you headless mice as a special present and leave them draped daintily across your favourite cushion so you are sure to notice...they pick up sheep ticks which bulge with blood and drop off on the floor just as you've taken your shoes off to drift about in bare feet...they gang up on strangers and beat the living daylights out of them in the middle of the night and stagger in at dawn with raggy, bloody ears and most of their whiskers missing...and run like hell if you approach them with the tea tree oil. Put them in a carrier to take them to the vet and it takes ten strong men dressed in riot gear to squash them inside where they scrabble frantically to be let out and keep up a continus howling all the way there and all the way back and that nice young girl who helps out at the vets clinic has to go for another tetunus injection...just to be on the safe side.

Small dogs think they are big dogs and want to fight Pit Bulls wearing studded collars who swagger about with an attitude...they tend towards yapping rather than barking and get tummy upsets if they don't get fed properly and they have owners who think it sweet to put them in frilly frocks and little sweaters and have an endless stream of old ladies bending down and saying Ahhh...so they show their sharp little yellow teeth and snarl and have to be yanked away before causing damage...they have dear little soft beds with pretty covers and pee on the rugs and need a weekly bath whether they want one or not and cost a feckin' fortune in trimming and neatening and tidying up...they are the dogs who get an assortment stocking at Christmas with stupid plastic chickens that squeak and tiny balls with bells in and special white chocolate drops...with added vitamins.

Big dogs fart big farts and lick their bottoms endlessly and roll over on their backs showing off their tummies and all those bits which elderly Aunties don't need to see and they leap at you and slobber over your face and love you half to death and can't walk more than half a mile before they've collapsed in a soggy heap and need to be carried home and they eat vast amounts of food and bury bones in the garden and dig them up weeks later when they're ripe and lounge all over the settee when they know they ought not to and when you take them out for a walk they lunge at car wheels and chase cyclists and knock small children over and total strangers pat them on the head and then ask if they bite....big dogs have big waggy tails that sweep coffee cups onto the floor and knock Christmas trees over and bruise your shins and they can reach the biscuits and the remains of the Sunday roast and it'll take a day of hard slog to get every bit of their coat brushed and all the knots cut out and then you have to do it all again next week...

I'm not a pet parent...I am a pet owner. Though heaven help me if Shane happens to read this and sees that dreadful word 'owner'...poor man would have a feckin' fit so he would. I like my pets...I do actually love a couple of them...I talk to my cats and tell them they are such handsome boys and when Millie writes a blog I've noticed she always refers to us as Mummy and Daddy but then that is 'cos she's a bit soppy...but I'm not their parent.