Baby Boomers: New Families?

Nov 27, 2012 by

Once Randy dies, that’s it.  No more pets.”

That’s what my 64-year-old neighbor told me several months ago.  I agreed.

Last February I had to put to sleep my Havana Brown feline Carlotta.  It was horrific for me and worse for her soulmate black coal feline Jason.  I vowed that when Jason, who is 17, passes over, that’s it. No more animal companions. I could not get through pet grief again.

Also, I have seen what happens too often to pets when their “parent” dies.  Relatives tend to drop them off at the shelter or even let them run loose on the street, despite the legal contract of the will which specified and funded the care instructions.

That was that. This summer Randy, an exotic bird, had to be put down because his injury was not healing.  We all grieved. Then my neighbor began planning her life, which included travel, now that she is “pet-free.” That looked pretty good to the rest of us.

Then, in THE NEWYORK TIMES MAGAZINE, on July 29, 2012, some of my Baby Boomer circle of friends noticed a piece advising the aging to start new pet families after their last animal companion passes on.  Leader of the mission is Bob Vetere, president of the American Pet Products Association.  His message includes the health benefits to us humans from the companionship.

Thrown for a loop, I discussed this with a friend who is a member of the Silent Generation.  I assumed she would be sympathetic with the reasons why I didn’t want to adopt again. Her response: There are so many cats and dogs which need homes.

Maybe All The Single Girlfriends can help me with this one.


About the Author

Jane Genova Has Written 24 Articles For Us!

I’m a coach, book author, and lecturer on careers, specializing in transitions. When I was 58, I restarted my professional life. That was in 2003. Since then I have I have muted into one of those renaissance folks who keeps multiple lines of work going. My latest book Over-50: How We Keep Working has helped thousands of people realize that exciting careers don’t depend on your age. I write four blogs: Jane Genova, Law and More, Career Transitions, Over-50.
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2 Comments

  1. Tani Wolff

    When I first put “le grand chat Jaune” to sleep (age 17) and sonn after lost Tracy Fred (a perfect black and white-tie 19-year-old, my kids told me no more cats. I, not unexpectedly, ignored them. Figaro and Susanna (I am an opera fanatic) keep me sane. They are impish and lovable. I never had to child-proof my home for my human children, but these two have required a significant investment in “museum putty”. They enjoy pushing things off shelves and tables just for the noise. They march across the keyboard while I am typing. They plop their increasingly large and furry behinds in the middle of my book/needlepoint/knitting etc. They also crawl in bed with me and purr their hearts out. I’ve had over 20 cats in the last 55 years, and these are the most loving and rewarding of all. Doubly so because I have both the time and the need for their companionship now that I live alone. I can’t imagine living without them.

  2. Baby Boomers: New Families? With four legged kids. – http://t.co/vVJ5prX9 – From Twitter

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