Division of Labor – The Way of the Pet

petspetspetssmallOne of the issues that often irk today’s ultra-busy woman is the need for an equitable division of labor. She longs for her husband and children to do their fair share in keeping the household operating efficiently. She wants coworkers to pitch in at the workplace. Complaints abound when the major part of the responsibility falls on female shoulders.

Our animal family members have wrapped their paws around this prickly issue and come up with their own creative solutions.

We have no idea how the animals, who share our home, have decided what chores they should do or how they’ve figured out which of them should have certain responsibilities. We just know that they do.

The division of labor goes something like this.

Leaf sleeps near the bedroom hallway door if Linda or Allen are out of town, as if he is waiting for them to return. This isn’t where he sleeps at night when his two humans are both home. He is normally on his doggy bed.  He also has ultimate responsibility of keeping watch if Allen is out of town because he becomes the man of the house.

Cuddles, our black kitten with white-mitten paws, is Linda’s guardian angel. Cuddles follows her charge everywhere and won’t even take a nap until she knows exactly where her female human is. Whenever Cuddles sleeps on the bed with Linda she takes on the task of waking her a minute before the alarm rings. She licks her human’s fingers or bites them, if Linda won’t get up right away.

Food preparation comes under the watchful eye of our pudgy, food-loving cat, Speedy and our eager dog, Leaf. What meal would be complete without Speedy rubbing against the chef’s legs and purring his satisfaction and Leaf alert for any escaping pieces of food that might hit the floor?

Sunshine is the household’s watch-bird. If anyone approaches our home, he screeches at the top of his lungs. No one could ever sneak past his watchful vigilance.

There is some silent communication about who is supposed to handle each task, although no visible signs of a household manager. Just a smooth animal operation at the Andersons’ home.

Are pets demonstrating in your home divisions of labor for vital chores, jobs, and power positions?

We welcome you to answer this question and the “Something to Think About” question at our blogs and forums, so everyone can see your comments.

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Join Allen & Linda at the Minnesota State Fair

Interview with Sage Lewis, The Creature Teacher! on her radio show The Pet Playground on Sunday, August 30, 2009, 6:00-7:00 p.m. Central Daylight Time at the AM950 KTNF Booth, Minnesota State Fair. Allen and Linda will discuss their new book, HORSES WITH A MISSION: Extraordinary True Stories of Equine Service. Stop by the booth. Sage will give away a free book. Call in the listener line at 952-946-6205.

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We hope you’ll consider pre-ordering HORSES WITH A MISSION: Extraordinary True Stories of Equine Service (New World Library, September 1, 2009). It’s available, autographed, at Angel Animals Online Bookstore, www.shop.angelanimals.net, Amazon.com (http://is.gd/2idLM), Barnes & Noble (http://is.gd/2iHQy), Borders Books & Music (http://is.gd/2iHWO), New World Library (http://is.gd/2iI1P) and other online and independent bookstores.

“Through their courage, sensitivity, and kindness, the horses in this book become our inspiration and guides.”
–Michael Mountain, former president of Best Friends Animal Society

Go to www.horseswithamission.com to read excerpts of the book, see video clips of stories, and join in the fun of launching this exciting new book.

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Don’t forget to enter the Dogs and the Women Who Love Them True Story Contest described in the announcement below. We’re looking forward to reading your stories. CONTEST DEADLINE — SEPTEMBER 30, 2009 — IS FAST-APPROACHING.

Allen and Linda Anderson
Angel Animals Network