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Lots of love for disabled pets

December 10, 2008 |  5:04 pm

AlmostperfectcoverA couple of months ago, a few animal bloggers made mention of a book titled "Almost Perfect: Disabled Pets and the People Who Love Them." It's a slim volume, edited by Mary A. Shafer, a freelance writer who explains in an introduction that she was inspired by a "sweet kitten" named Idgie. "She had come to us under the most unusual of circumstances, " Shafer writes. "At first, I had even tried to give her away because I feared we wouldn't be able to give her the quality of life she deserved...

"The thing is, Idgie was born with no eyes." But ..."since you don't miss what you've never had, Idgie doesn't think she's missing anything ... and she's not." Shafer adds that her cat is "one of the happiest, most joy-filled creatures I have ever known."

And so it goes in "Almost Perfect." Several writers share their experiences with animals with physical limitations. Tux the cat's back legs are paralyzed. Simon is a three-legged cat. Ruby the dog roller-commutes "on wheels that stand in for rear legs."

You may think you've read these types of stories before, but they are hard to put down once you've started reading. And they're a testament to the astonishing bonds we form with the animals who live with us, perfect or not.

(Petswithdisabilities.org lists a handful of other books by authors who have been similarly inspired by their disabled companions.)

-- Alice Short

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