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Animals: No Magician's Prop



Joined: 4/26/2014
Posts: 5
Gingersnap
I knew I was being ridiculous, but I couldn't seem to make myself move. My body remained tense, petrified against the garage wall as I watched my siblings pamper and fawn over the white bundle of fluff in front of me.

It was a rabbit. My mind wrestled back and forth with itself as I tried to discern what this meant. For years I had wanted a dog-- ever since my dog had died when I was six. I had begged, bartered, threw tantrums, flattered, and pretty much done anything in my power to try to convince my parents that a canine was the only thing I wanted in life. To my dismay, my parents continued to deflect my attempts, instead providing me with a bearded dragon and multiple fish.

The lizard was fun, and the fish lasted for about two years each, but they didn't possess the loyalty and excitement that a dog offered. At 16 years old, I had pretty much given up on my goal.

I was surprised when my dad came home from work one day and produced a gray bin from the front seat of the car. It wasn't the bin that shocked me-- those were quite common at our house-- but the “small” creature I found inside it.

“He’s four months old,” my dad told us. “My co-worker found she couldn't take care of two, so she asked me to take this one.”

I wasn't scared of rabbits, after all, who would be nervous around such a sweet, fluffy creature? This rabbit, however, was a bit different than the other ones I had seen. Merlin (as we would later dub him) was a Flemish giant, meaning he could grow up to be about 20 pounds. He was also an albino, and I couldn't help but be thrown off every time he looked at me with his pinkish-red eyes.

Despite these misgivings, I quickly grew attached to my family’s newest edition. I spent hours researching the care of rabbits and how to bond with them. I spent even more time taking what I had learned and applying it to my own rabbit. I took my role as pet-owner seriously, and I was determined to make Merlin the most pampered rabbit in the whole world.

Regardless of my efforts, Merlin passed away on July 4th-- a little over a year since we got him. I was devastated-- I had done everything that the books, videos, and websites had said. Why hadn't it been enough?

I had a short time with my pet, but that short time taught me a lot. It taught me to care for another and to be responsible. It reminded me how much fun having a pet could be. Most of all, it taught me not to judge a pet by its exterior. All pets are different, and have different needs and abilities, but that doesn't mean that one is better than the other. All animals have a good side to them, we just need to give them a chance to show it.
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Comment by thiegsr


Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
On behalf of the entire StageofLife.com editorial board, I would like to congratulate you for your Pet / Animal story being chosen as 1 of the 10 essays in the running for 1st place for our April 2015 teen writing competition. Be proud of your accomplishment. We had over 100 essays submitted for April’s contest.

We are in the process of selecting our top three winners, and naming the 1st place winner from the narrowed field.

We will post all winning essay results by May 31st. You can check this page for the results after May 31st:
http://www.stageoflife.com/Writing_Contests/WritingContestWinners.aspx

Thanks for adding your voice to our mission “Changing the World . . . One Story at a Time” and feel free to share your accomplishment.

Sincerely,
Rebecca Thiegs
StageofLife.com Co-Founder and Education Consultant
Posted: Friday, May 8, 2015 6:49:36 PM
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Comment by thiegsr


Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
On behalf of the entire StageofLife.com editorial board, I would like to congratulate you for your April 2015 Animal / Pet Story being selected as a runner up in our teen writing contest.

We will post all winning essay results by May 31st. You can check this page for the results after May 31st:
http://www.stageoflife.com/Writing_Contests/WritingContestWinners.aspx

Thanks for adding your voice to our mission “Changing the World . . . One Story at a Time” and feel free to share your accomplishment with the world.

Sincerely,
Rebecca Thiegs
StageofLife.com Co-Founder and Education Consultant
Posted: Monday, May 18, 2015 7:46:16 PM
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Comment by thiegsr


Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
We wanted to let you know that our April 2015 Pet Stories Teen Trend Report is complete. In the report, we have compiled the statistics from our teen survey and come up with themes based on the submitted essays.

If you would like to view the teen trend report, here is the link:
http://www.stageoflife.com/StageHighSchool/TeensandPets.aspx

Thanks again for sharing your story with the world!

- Rebecca
Posted: Wednesday, August 12, 2015 1:45:24 PM
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