The Pets Who Read With Us

Okay, so maybe pets don’t exactly read with us.  They aren’t hovering over our shoulders skimming the words on the pages of our books (or Kindles), but they are there near us while we do.  The cat you see in the picture to the left, named Manfusha, never misses a chance to accompany me while I read (unless I just fed her, but you know how that goes).  Usually, she lays at my feet and purrs contentedly.  It makes me wonder, does she read my mind and glimpse the details of the story my eyes are focused on?  Is she watching the pictures as they flit inside my head?  Maybe it is like a movie for her.

Cats are an enigma, for that matter, so are other animals.  We don’t really understand them.  I’m rather doubtful she really is reading my mind, but sometimes I wonder. If I dare stop during a key scene, she does seem rather annoyed.  Then again, she could just be upset I disturbed her to get up and get something to drink.  It’s difficult to know the answer and she refuses to reply when I ask.  Her only response is a look that says
“you are an idiot for talking to a cat, as if I would deign to speak with a human!”.  So maybe we will never know the truth.

Today, I would like to offer you all the chance to speak about your pets (or reading partners).  Feel free to tell us a bit about their habits when you read.  Also, show us pictures, as it does help form the visuals.  Unlike my cat, I can’t read your mind to see what they look like.  You are also welcome to debate what exactly our pets are thinking as they keep us company during our journeys into the written word.  What do you believe they are up to?

Edited to Add- Some readers don’t have pets, but if you do have other pics you would like add such as yourself, favorite reading spot, blanket, pillow, stuffed animal, etc then that is acceptable.  All I ask is that the picture not be offensive to others (no rated R type material).


~ by Suzie on June 5, 2011.

35 Responses to “The Pets Who Read With Us”

  1. Alas, I don’t know how to add a picture in the comment section, but I promise one will be included in tomorrow’s official first episode of “The Adventures of Teagan.” (She’s a tortie, if that helps.)

    Teagan gets jealous of my books. She’d rather be the thing in my lap, so she jumps up, pushes her way over, even goes so far as to climb onto my open book, until I promptly move it out of her way and she can curl up in my lap. Then I must hold the book awkwardly or at an angle, eventually cutting off blood supply to one arm.

    She does, however, love library books. Who knows where some of those things have been, because every once in a while, Teagan will find one absolutely fascinating in smell. She’s a sniffer, and sometimes looks like a dog on a trail when she follows her nose. She also likes to play with bookmarks.

    I don’t think she shares my love of books, but wherever I’m sitting, that’s where she wants to be.

  2. Too many animals to post a photo. I’m companion to two basset hounds and a longhaired dachshund – and slave to two cats – a Maine coon (or part Maine coon, biiiiig kitty) and a tortoise shell.
    They’re all my babies, celebrating with me in the good times, being there in the down times. It’s amazing how animals can sense when you’re sad – and they’re right there to cuddle and comfort you.
    My dachshund, Bo, curls up at my feet when I’m on the computer. The bassets – and cats – are always somewhere close by. I read in bed in the evening, and everybody’s curled up around me, keeping me company.
    Animals by their very presence are a calming influence. I can feel myself relax. They’re my support and my little furry life lines.

    • Lol, PLB, you could have picked any pic you wanted or two. Sounds like a lot of them, but I guess you never have to feel lonely!

  3. “Lonely” is almost never in my vocabulary, Susan. Some nights, when I wake up in the wee hours because I’m immobilized by the press of fur bodies or on the verge of being pushed off the bed by my critters, I could almost wish for a little less “companionship.”
    But then I think how lucky I am. They’re all rescues, by the way.

    • Guess you never have to be cold at night either! That is great they are all rescues. I’m sure there are some interesting stories.

      My kitty was at the local pound and on death row. Poor thing was only eight weeks and her whole litter was up on the chopping block. My cruel husband would only let me take one. It was probably just as well since a year later I had to move to another state, but if I could have, I would have taken more. I actually moved two cats and a hamster from North Carolina to California once and survived to tell about it (the cats were drugged, the hamster didn’t care). That was before my marriage, though, and the husband can only tolerate so much.

    • Rescues make the best companions, in my opinion. My cat is a rescue too, and I can see her undying devotion because she remembers what I saved her from.

  4. Thank you for adding the photos Mistress 🙂


    Tony is my clawed african frog who doesn’t actually sit on my shoulder while I read but is a great buddy. He is at least 19 years old and and is totally aquatic – it was a challenge to get his pic since he never comes out of the water.


    Bratty is my adopted kitty whose name was Bradley when he arrived but it soon turned to Bratty. He likes to sit on the bird cage, keyboards, printers and will only drink out of a running facet. If I am reading, working or just having fun on the computer he loves to get attention by biting my head or shoulder whichever he can reach at the time 🙂 I also have a great dog named Pixie (adopted mut) who is always at my feet and pushes books out my hand if she needs a pet or 2.

    • Okay, pics are added. Love them both!

    • I wanted you to know I showed the picture of your cat on the bird cage to my husband. He got a good laugh. Also, that is one healthy frog! Do you get him out to play with at all or does he not like to be handled?

      • lol the first time Bratty climbed on the cage the bird really flipped out flying around everywhere. That gave Bratty more reason to sit where he could try to catch the poor bird. After a while the bird got used to it I guess because you would never know he has a cat sitting on the cage. I think Bratty likes the view from there because he seems to have lost interest in the bird:) Tony has never been out of the water, he will rest in my hand when I feed him but only his head is out of the water. In their natural habitat they never leave the water and I have always feared that he would be hurt if I took him out. He seems happy and comes when I tap the tank to feed him so I have never felt the need to handle him.

  5. Love the pictures! 🙂

    My dog and my cat frequently read with me. My dog is the best because she always relaxes, but sometimes she gets mad at me for ignoring her, so she will either bite the corners of my books off or she will try to bite the corner of my kindle, Lol, so I have to keep an eye on her. And well my cat, she just wants attention most of the time and if I don’t give it to her she will either lay on my book or step on my chest so I can’t read anymore. As annoying as this is sometimes, I still can’t help but love them being with me when I read 🙂 Especially when I read scary books and don’t want to be alone, lol.

  6. Love the cat on the birdcage!
    My calico – whom I lost recently due to old age (she was 21 and, yep, a rescue) – liked to sit on my keyboard. She’s the one who taught me to hit the “Save” button every few seconds – because she would come from nowhere to land on the keyboard.
    The first time it happened, I wound up with 24 pages (no joke!) of nothing but the letter z. I had to delete everything and start over.
    I lost a couple of paragraphs I’d written just before the “landing.” After that, now even if I just pause for a couple of seconds, I hit the save button first.

    • P.L. I truly sympathize with you! Bratty turned on some shortcut key and my keyboard last week, I thought I had another virus. I would start typing and programs were opening all over the place – nothing was getting on the page. This was the week after my computer was wiped by a virus. They are so lucky we still love them to pieces 🙂

      • Oh, Tammy, that had to freak you out until you realized the cat did it. They are lucky we love them so much, but they do give us a ton of affection too. If only I could get my cat to stop clawing the recliner, I would be happy.

  7. What a menagerie we have building on this thread 🙂 Here in Maine, we have reading chaperones both inside and outside. Inside, we have two cats and a dog, though all three come and go regularly and the cats have free-roaming access via cat doors. Outside, we have a white Fat Duck and a mallard/domestic cross we call Original Duck (or pervert…another story :-()

    Even as I type these words, Patsy our dog nosed my office door open and is now standing behind me, presumably to help. Since I write full-time, she spends most of her time sleeping on my office floor while I type, edit, and answer phones regarding the charity work that I do.

    At night, our 16-year-old cat, Weeny (used to be Celine) sprawls at my feet while I read and return emails and do more edits. Our 13-year-old large orange tabby, Slugger (think Garfield only not as wise) tries to leap up on my desk several times a week, but that hasn’t been allowed since his tail knocked a drink into my keyboard a few years ago.

    Both cats like to lounge on me when I’m watching TV or reading in my recliner. The older one prefers my shoulder, facing the TV or book. The tabby prefers my lap. Neither, however, would ever dream of being on the same person at the same time. They have only been together for 13 years so haven’t quite gotten used to each other, preferring instead separate rooms for the most part. On the few occasions where one room must be shared, Weeny keeps a steady warning grumble going. Slugger, the much larger tabby, really is to blame. He’s been pouncing and rolling Weeny since he was a kitten. She didn’t like it then and likes it even less now.

    Fat Duck would happily hang out on our 60-foot porch while we’re reading or doing anything else, but unfortunately he hasn’t learned to control his bowels so it’s a constant “discussion” with him. Original Duck, truthfully has no use for books, unless possibly cookbooks that would be used to create even more and better bread for his twice-daily feedings.

    Thanks for humoring the meanderings, Susan, Everyone:-).

    ‘Hope you all have a great Monday/Tuesday 🙂

    • Tim, thanks for telling us all about your animals! Sounds like you have an interesting crew there. My own cat walks across my desk often when I’m using the main computer. She is rather jealous of it. As for your duck, very interesting, I have never known anyone that had one as a pet, but it does sound fun (except for that bowel problem). You should post pics of all your house companions. I would love to see them. Should you not know how to do so, email me and I can tell you how or do it for you. I’m sure everyone else would want to see your furry and feathery friends as well.

  8. Sadly, I don’t have a pet any more to post (offered to post a picture of my granddaughter – she’s almost as good as a pet), but I’ve enjoyed your stories and pictures of your pets.

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