Social Question

Jeruba's avatar

Is there anything you can say to a person whose obsession with pets seems to get in the way of ordinary discourse?

Asked by Jeruba (41919 points ) January 10th, 2013

NOTE, I am not picking on any jelly here. This question actually came up in the context of another site. (And it’s not a site about pets.)

Some people are apparently just crazy in love with their dogs or cats, even more so than I’ve seen some parents with their kids. They can’t stop posting about them and uploading pictures on thread after thread, their own and other people’s, sometimes several per day from the same person. They apparently expect everyone to share their mad enthusiasm for their beloved furry companions.

It’s fine with me that they love their pets. But I am sick to death of opening an interesting-looking discussion thread and seeing yet another cute photo of somebody’s sweet, cuddly puppy or kitten, followed by a polite chorus of dutifully admiring posts. No amount of affirmation seems to satisfy them; it just seems to bring on more and more of the same.

These aren’t even take-it-or-leave-it links but huge embedded photos that you can’t miss when opening the thread.

Is there any way to tell such pet owners gently but clearly that enough is enough?—that any topic can be done to death and that it’s time to quit assaulting everyone with lethally gagging doses of adorableness?

Sorry if I sound grouchy. I’m not really grouchy. Okay, I’m grouchy.

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35 Answers

wildpotato's avatar

Don’t you dare tell me to stop posting about my pet goose! His name is Merlin and I love him.~

bookish1's avatar

How invested are you in the site? Are you afraid of being perceived as rude or grouchy, or alienating the pet-adoring masses?

You have a very tactful tone in writing and I’m sure that you could figure out a way to register your displeasure. Whether it will have any effect on a site full of pet admirers is another question, however.

glacial's avatar

There is probably no amount of tact that will keep the pet lover from thinking he or she (not to mention the little darling) is being horribly wronged. You may just have to grimace and bear it.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Obviously not, since they love their pets more than you.

livelaughlove21's avatar

What ever do you mean?

How could you not like kitties and puppies?

I think you’re just going to have to ignore it, or leave the particular site.

wundayatta's avatar

No way in hell you can say anything about it and not get a ton of shit on your head. But, having said that, I think you should speak your truth.

rooeytoo's avatar

I feel that way about photographs of people’s grandchildren! Some of them are truly butt ugly but you are obligated to say how adorable they are. It all depends on your perspective. Not to mention my dogs and birds are undoubtedly the cutest most photogenic creatures that exist so the world should be flattered that I choose to share them with you! Just check out my avatar and you can see for yourself!

zensky's avatar

@Jeruba I lurve you even more now – if that is even flutherly possible.

* SIGH*

cookieman's avatar

I would randomly ask if anyone has a good recipe for kitty tacos or dog stew.

jonsblond's avatar

You need to fight fire with fire. Post photos of roaches or spiders and tell everyone they are your new babies.

Jeruba's avatar

@jonsblond, I love your answer.

Thanks, @bookish1, but I know that when I get really irritated I can’t keep the sharpness out of my tone. Even if I were to say something as seemingly innocuous as “Hey, how about if we start a thread for the pet lovers so they can post their pictures and darling-pet stories for each other’s unmitigated delight?” it would turn sour as soon as I added “Maybe that way we’d have just one off-topic thread of suffocating cuteness instead of a dozen or more everywhere you look, bringing tears to my vexed old eyes.”

When I write comments like that on fluther, usually I manage to delete them before posting. Yes, I’d like to stay on friendly terms with the folks on that site and not get myself labeled a grumpy, mean old pet hater.

I appreciate all suggestions. I suspect that those who say it’s hopeless are probably right.

FutureMemory's avatar

People that elevate their pets to human status annoy the hell out of me.

I recall a woman (friend of a friend) that actually said to me “I guess we’re in the same boat” in reference to me having to take my father to the ER a few times over a short period, and her taking her DOG to the pet hospital for some issue I can’t recall now. She was really dramatic about it, too..“I know just how you feel…I’ve been going through it too this last week”. I was like…”bitch, shut the FUCK up.”

(Well, I’m too nice to actually say that, but that’s what I was thinking).

Coloma's avatar

@wildpotato Well tell Merlin to move over so my goose Marwyn can get in the picture too. lol

Maybe you should start posting pictures of some obscure interest, like growing rhubarb or collecting popcorn that looks like famous people. haha

Sunny2's avatar

@cookieman I didn’t know that cats like tacos. Chihuahuas maybe, but cats?
My opinion of humans who are more concerned about pets than about people shifts as soon as I find that out. If there was famine, they would feed their pets before their neighbors. They truly believe that their pets love them more than any person could and can’t even see what a pathetic thing that is to think. I feel sorry for them.

rooeytoo's avatar

@Sunny2 – I gratefully accept your sympathy! ;-)

Sunny2's avatar

^^ You’re very welcome. I mean it sincerely.

zensky's avatar

Ther shud be mor talkings bout Roadkill Kwizeen

Den everbuddy’s happy. Not a pet talk and not killin pussy’s. Jus roadkill. Yeehaw!

Shippy's avatar

Send back photos of your ‘puppies’ and demand lot’s of attention and praise.

ucme's avatar

Those buggers have me running away in fear, scary stuff.

Coloma's avatar

@Sunny2 I think there ARE people that are over the top neurotic about their animals and project all sorts of human emotions onto them that simply do not not exist. OTOH to express love and caring towards any sentient being is a sign of a compassionate human.
I would share whatever I had with a person or an animal depending on the circumstance and any act of altruism whether it is directed towards a person or an animal is a viable act of compassion IMO.
Yep, I wouldn’t roast my 15 year old goose for dinner if he was the last thing on earth. We’d share that final slice of bread and drift off with our heads tucked under our wings.

Sunny2's avatar

^^ point taken.

cookieman's avatar

@Coloma: Well sure. I mean, at fifteen years, that meat would be tough. Ten years maybe, and I’d probably marinate first.

Coloma's avatar

@cookieman Yes, tough old birds are not desirable. That’s a good thing for Marwyn. lol

cookieman's avatar

tough old birds are not desirable

@Coloma: You are, of course, the exception to that rule.

rooeytoo's avatar

@cookieman – ohhhhh, you are cold!

cookieman's avatar

@rooeytoo: That was a compliment.

rooeytoo's avatar

@cookieman – so @Coloma is a tough old bird who IS desirable??? hehehe, I guess that could be a compliment!

Coloma's avatar

Yes, my breast still remains succulent, baste me baby. ;-)

FutureMemory's avatar

^^ Pics or it didn’t happen.

zensky's avatar

That’s one pic I’ll pass on. Just saying.

rooeytoo's avatar

@ucme – is that your dog??? It is a very pretty dog. I love cocker spaniels, I raised them and showed them for a lot of years. They are about the best family dog in the whole world!!!

ucme's avatar

@rooeytoo No it’s not my pooch, just a reference to spaniel’s ears that’s all.

rooeytoo's avatar

oh hell, I thought we were talking about @Coloma‘s succulent breasts??? I didn’t know what the spaniel had to do with them, but hey, I am old, I often lose the plot!

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