Welcome to the website woven for wordaholics, logolepts, and verbivores. Carnivores eat meat; herbivores eat plants and vegetables; verbivores devour words. If you are heels over head (as well as head over heels) in love with words, tarry here a while to graze or, perhaps, feast on the English language. Ours is the only language in which you drive in a parkway and park in a driveway and your nose can run and your feet can smell.

 

Now in its seventh year, Remember Me Thursday aims to unite people and pet adoption organizations in more than 180 countries as one voice for orphan pets in need of forever homes. “Millions of beautiful, adoptable pets will lose their lives in 2019,” states Mike Arms, longtime President and CEO of Helen Woodward Animal Center in Rancho Santa Fe. “We can raise our voices and share one life-saving message and literally save millions of pets on this one day.”

That day is Thursday, September 26. To find out more, visit https://remembermethursday.org/.

The United States is a nation of caninophiles (a fancy word for dog lovers). About 70 million dogs live here. More than one in three American families (36.5%) owns a dog,

while only 30% of households include children. Americans boast highest dog population in the world. And, by the way, San Diego is the most dog-friendly city in the US of A.

Our mass caninophilia (love of dogs) speaks volumes about us as a people. “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress,” said Mahatma Gandhi, “can be measured by the way in which its animals are treated.”

Why do we love thee, doggies? Let us count the ways. Dogs are highly companionable, obedient, and playful animals. No other creature on earth shares our homes and our lives the way dogs do. The partnership is unique in interspecies relationships. The loyalty and devotion that dogs demonstrate as part of their natural pack-animal instincts exemplify the human idea of love and friendship. Dogs seem to view their humans as members of their pack. To us, dogs are adopted sons and daughters, fur babies who are short, hairy, walk on all fours and possess rudimentary speech.

Dogs show us our finest selves. The romantic poet Lord Byron wrote on the tomb of his Newfoundland: “Near this spot are deposited the remains of one who possessed Beauty without Vanity, Strength without Insolence, Courage without Ferocity, and all the Virtues of Man, without his Vices. This praise, which would be unmeaning Flattery if inscribed over human ashes, is but a just tribute to the Memory of Boatswain, a Dog.”

Dogs come into our lives to teach us about love. When they depart too soon, they teach us about loss. A new dog never replaces an old dog. It simply expands the heart. Think about it. We give dogs what time we can spare, what space we can spare, what food we can spare, and what love we can spare. In return, dogs give us everything. It’s the best deal we human beings have ever made.

In ancient Egypt, cats were worshiped as gods, and cats have never forgotten that. Back then, killing a sacred cat was punishable by death. When the family cat died, the entire family would shave off their eyebrows as a sign of mourning. In their cats’ burial sites, wealthy Egyptians would place embalmed mice as afterlife snacks.

Cats have had their ups and downs. In the Middle Ages, the pagan associations of cats caused them to become outcasts. They were labeled evil creatures, accomplices of witches and carriers of plague. Today cats have made a spectacular comeback. Approximately 74 million Feline Americans reside here, compared to 70 million Canine Americans and, a distant third, 14 million Parakeet Americans.

Such devotion should come as no surprise. Human beings are beguiled by the mysterious aloofness of cats; their swift prowess as hunters; their sensuous, sculpted bodies; their elegant, acrobatic grace and agility; their kittenish curiosity and mischief; and their regal dignity. Our lives with cats are not only ennobled; they are made longer: Studies show that owning a cat (or a dog) alleviates loneliness, anxiety and depression; reduces stress, high blood pressure and heart disease; and adds six months to the average person’s life.

For ailurophiles (a fancy word for cat lovers), cats are a blessing to life. They warm our laps and our hearts; give us someone to talk to and to spoil; donate their services as alarm clocks; are living adornments of our homes; keep mice and rats on the run; remind us that life can still be wild and mysterious; inspire poets, writers, moviemakers, creators of musical theater, artists and cartoonists; and hold the purr strings to our hearts.