The only people obsessed with pets are the people who don't have children 3 years ago

The only people obsessed with pets are the people who don't have children

Don't get me wrong - I like dogs.

In fact, I even have one. Penny; a pomeranian-Jack Russell cross who was undeniably cute as a button when my husband and I selected her six years ago from her litter.

And she remains (somewhat) cute to this day.

The difference is now, however, that I have two children - a boy, Felix, who is 21 months, and a girl, Giulia, who is four and starting school shortly.

So my hands are full. In a nutshell, I have enough shit to be dealing with - literally and otherwise - without having to worry about keeping an animal alive along with two small humans too.

It's a scenario familiar to many: you get married; you get an animal; you love and adore said animal... then you have children and your love for the aforementioned animal is put very much in perspective.

A dog, no matter how lovely, will never trump your own flesh and blood.

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I should highlight that Penny is well-cared for. She's a happy pup who gets plenty of walks and cuddles. She tucks into expensive food every evening. She plays with the children and they adore having her to run after.

But for those mums and dads who are pet-free and are considering acquiring a cat, dog, rabbit, turtle, or goldfish - my advice is always the same: please don't bother.

Because juggling the school-run, toilet-training, weaning, first crushes, internet safety, mealtimes and everything else is enough of a zoo-slash-circus as is. You certainly don't need to add another animal into that mix.

Let's not forget either that the people who like and share and gush over animals on Facebook are also those who generally have no children. The rest of us, well, we live in the real world.

So by all means admire a cute furry thing from afar; if your neighbour, friend, or cousin has a pet - shower the creature with kisses if you must. Watch Homeward Bound, and Zootropolis and The Secret Life Of Pets on repeat if so inclined.

Just make sure that when your kids kick off another round of 'can we plleeeasseeee have a puppy?' your answer is a firm 'of course not'.