For the past dozen Valentine’s Days, it’s been hit or miss for me when it comes to the celebrating this holiday in the traditional manner with the three Ds: dating, dressing up and dining at a fancy eatery with an inflated-price menu to capitalize on the looking-for-love crowd. One Valentine’s Day, I actually had two dates — lunch and dinner — with two different people at the same restaurant! But that’s a tale for another day.
This Valentine’s Day, I look forward spending time with Chipper, my 13-year-old Husky-Golden Retriever mix; Cleo, my 13-year-old retired canine surfer; and Casey, my nearly-2-year-old, always-into-mischief orange tabby.
Let’s be honest. Valentine’s Day dates come and go. Perhaps you are among the fortunate to find “the one,” but if not, don’t let this holiday be a downer. Kick Cupid to the curbside and embrace the fact that you are blessed to have your ever-loyal dog or cat who showers you with affection 365 days a year.
Here are 10 reasons why every one should be so lucky as to have a pet for their Valentine on February 14 — and every other day.
1. Your pet won’t get you a frying pan or vacuum cleaner as a Valentine’s Day gift.
True, our pets don’t have credit cards — yet — or do online shopping, but the gift of a doggy kiss or kitty purr is priceless (and interest-free!). Cleo has earned the nickname, “Torpedo Tongue.”
2. Your pets won’t guilt you into buying an expensive box of gourmet chocolates.
You know chocolate is dangerous for dogs and cats, so save your money (or treat yourself to a small box of chocolates stashed out of paw’s reach).
3. Your dog can make you feel more like a rock star rather than a lonely Maytag repairman.
After a brutal day at work followed by a congested commute home, your excited dog leaps, yips with glee and races to embrace you the nanosecond you step into your home. Why, Chipper and Cleo shower me with canine kisses when I return from getting the mail out of my mailbox in front of my house.
4. Your cat could care less if you are having a bad hair day.
In fact, some felines may even try to “help” tame your cowlick.
5. Your dog will never reach for the TV remote and abruptly change the channel on you.
Now, in her chewing phrase as a young dog, Chipper did once destroy a remote, but has been paws off this device ever since.
6. Your pet happily becomes your personal foot warmer on chilly days.
Almost on cue, Casey chirps and then tunnels under my throw blanket on the sofa, circles and then transforms into a furry heating pad to keep my toes toasty.
7. Your pet makes the perfect excuse to cut short a disastrous Valentine’s Day date.
Even if your dog has the world’s strongest bladder, you can blame her for the need for you to head home to keep her perfect never-pee-in-the-house streak intact.
8. Your pet unleashes your goofy side without the risk of embarrassment.
In my living room, I sing off-key and have dance moves never to be viewed in public — much to the delight of Chipper, Cleo and Casey.
9. Your pet won’t cheat on you.
Sure, Chipper and Cleo love opportunities to play with their favorite canine pals — Stanley and Jack — but I’m their No. 1 play buddy. Casey doesn’t have any feline friends, but bypasses my dogs to play fetch with a cat spring toy with me.
10. You will never be alone on Valentine’s Day.
Your pet will be there to help you celebrate in whatever manner you choose — guaranteed.