Furry friends to the rescue.
When everything on my social media and news feeds tells me the world is burning down around us, I have one go-to trick that never fails to recharge my batteries, lift my spirits, and remind me of good things: memes and videos of baby animals. And, thank goodness I’m not not alone. The backbone of the Internet (minus some pretty seedy stuff) is cute kitten and puppy pictures. I am ALLLLLLL the way here for anything joy-bringing!
Lately, I’ve also noticed myself gravitating toward TV and movies with animals. (If you haven’t yet listened to Helena Bonham Carter’s narration of the 8-part docuseries on Netflix called “Wild Babies,” then do it!) And, more and more, I’m noticing the pets in my book choices.
Whether they are used to set up a dog park meet/cute or as comic relief or as the emotional support for the MC, I have started paying more attention to animals in books. (In fact, the third book in my Writer’s Room series has such a sweet rescue puppy, I almost convinced myself while writing it to try to find one in real life!)
Of course I remember some from books growing up (Black Beauty, Charlotte’s Web, Harry Potter), but now dogs are showing up in my adult book selections just as frequently. (e.g. There’s Spaghetti on my Ceiling by Allison B. Kelley, Total Bull: A New Leash on Life by Tiffany Andrea, Booked for Murder by CeeCee James). And these were just the three I found quickly on Kindle in my recents reads!
I was glad to know that I’m not the only one needing baby animal escapism fantasies right now. But, interestingly (at least to me), I actually found some statistics that indicate that this fixation with our furry friends really is a trend. For example, reportedly nearly 70% of American households own a pet, almost 60% of households in Canada and the UK have pets, and in Australia, 60% of households have pets but up to 90% reported having a pet at some time. That is A LOT of folks worldwide living with animals!! And for a trend analysis for my more serious readers as well as some breakdown of furry vs. feathered vs. finned I found this little blurb.
Working from home during Covid blurred the work / life divide for a lot of people, but maybe one positive spin was that it also gave colleagues a chance to share a little more of their pet’s live’s, too. (Anyone else have to mute a Zoom call for the dog to bark at the Amazon delivery… or a squirrel?) It certainly made me aware of lots of other peoples animal babies.
So, maybe it makes sense that I’m seeing more and more animals in books in general, and in romcoms specifically: pets are a big part of our lives. We love them, we rely on them, we love to talk about them, and we love to share them.
Anyway, like “Hang in There!” cat posters and “It’s ruff out there” dog memes, I hope you’re finding a way to take care of yourself right now.
In love and laughter,