Top Stories

Unbelievable Pets

Unbelievable Pets
Photo by Chewy on Unsplash

We love our furry and feathered friends for their personalities, whether they’re being sweet, misbehaving, or just being weird. Here, people have shared the most unbelievable stories about their beloved pets.

1. The Warning

black and white cat lying on brown bamboo chair inside roomPhoto by Manja Vitolic on Unsplash

About 12 years ago, my cat saved my life.

I'd just gone to bed and my cat raced into my bedroom, meowing and racing around the room. I thought he wanted food, though I'd never seen him this frantic about food before.

I followed him down to the kitchen to fill his food bowl so he'd calm down and I could get some sleep, except that he didn't stop at his food bowl. He raced down to my office, looking back occasionally to make sure I was following him. When I got down there, I couldn't believe my eyes.

I saw that the circuit breaker panel was sparking and then suddenly ignited. Because I was there when it ignited, I was able to turn off the main breaker and put the fire out before it spread.

Chandler Scarborough

2. He Knew Something Was Wrong

short-coated black dog sittingPhoto by Alexander Grey on Unsplash

We had a Black Lab/Weimaraner mix named Moses. He was a big dog, about 100 pounds, but very calm and well-mannered. We had a routine for bedtime; before bed, Moses would go out and do the business, but occasionally during the night he would come and sit on my side of the bed.

Just his presence alone would wake me up and I would take him out and then go back to sleep. He was only allowed one trip out during bedtime. One night, we did our normal routine. My 15-year-old son was in his bedroom playing video games and I let the dog out and then we went to bed.

Around 1 am, he wanted to go out again, so we went. I crawled back into bed with five hours until the alarm went off. Around 3 am, Moses was sitting by my bed, whimpering. I mumbled, “No way, boy, go back to bed, I’m sleeping”. He didn’t move; in fact, he started pawing at my arm.

I was starting to get annoyed and said, “GO AWAY," but he didn’t move and he kept pulling at my arm. He was insistent, whimpering, grabbing at me. As I started to come fully awake, I heard a strange sound as I was trying to focus and figure out what was going on.

I can’t really describe the sound but it was a kind of low growl-moaning and it was coming from my son’s room. I jumped out of bed, fully awake now, and with the adrenaline that only a mom fearing the worst can have, I sprinted to my son’s room to find him in a full-on, grand mal seizure in his bedroom.

Had Moses not awakened me at that particular moment, we may never have known this seizure occurred, because it was summer and my son was staying up late and sleeping until noon most days. So my good boy, Moses, blew my mind when he made sure to let me know that my son was having a seizure in the other room.

Diana Sarabia Gallagher

3. A Dog’s Senses

black and tan german shepherd on green grass field during daytimePhoto by Anna Dudkova on Unsplash

One day, while I was working upstairs in my office, my German Shepherd came upstairs and stood in my office doorway barking at me. Then he walked over to the top of the staircase, barking as he looked down the stairs. He lifted his head, looked toward me, and continued barking.

He walked back and stood in the office doorway again—looking at me, barking. He did this repeatedly for a few minutes while I worked. It became obvious he wanted me to follow him downstairs. I got up and asked him, “What’s the matter?" As soon as I asked this, our house began to shake.

Everything on my walls and shelves were rattling. I did not understand exactly what was happening, but we both ran down the stairs while I yelled, “Let’s get out of here!" We got outside and I felt the ground moving. Then it stopped. We had just experienced an earthquake. They are practically nonexistent in our region.

Somehow, my boy knew it was coming and came upstairs to warn me.

Marie Lawrence

4. One Way To Get Your Attention

russian blue cat lying on brown textilePhoto by Milada Vigerova on Unsplash

For 20 years I was a long-haul truck driver. For the last seven years of that, my orphaned cat, Sooty, was on the truck with me. Sooty, a large Russian Blue mix, was only about a year old when he discovered how to get me to return to the cab and keep him company.

I was in the office of a truck shop making the payment for truck repairs when I heard a horn blaring. A worker came rushing in and said, “Lady, there's a cat in your truck doing that on purpose”. I went to the truck. Sooty stopped, sat in my seat, and looked at me like, “It's about time you showed up”.

After that, I soon learned to cover my steering wheel with a large box to keep him from honking the horn.

C Woodrome

5. Changing Minds And Hearts

dog holding flowerPhoto by Celine Sayuri Tagami on Unsplash

My boyfriend came home one afternoon with a story about a dog he had seen at someone’s house. The poor thing was chained outside and very skinny. He told me the owner had gotten him because he wanted to train him to scare people, but the guy said he was “dumb as a bag of rocks”. He was a pit bull.

The next day I was sitting on the couch when my boyfriend walked through the door…with the dog. I was furious. He didn't listen to me at all! I told him to find the dog another home. No more talk about it! The dog crouched by the door. My boyfriend left to get him some food and stuff in the meantime.

The dog stayed by the door, holding his head down and looking up at me every so often. He wouldn't lift his head. He would strain his eyes to look up at me, but would not lift his head up. The ice on my heart cracked a little.

I found a comfy blanket and put it down on the floor for him. I tried to coax him over but he just sat at the door and stared timidly at me. Nothing. I had to physically push this dog, while he stayed mostly in a sitting position, to the bed beside the couch. He reeked.

Oh no, if this mutt was going to stay in my house he was getting a bath. I was scared as heck. What if he didn't like water? What if he hurt me? I ran the bath and pushed the sitting dog down the hallway. Took a deep breath, and pulled him into the tub. He loved it!

That was the first time I saw any joy in that dog’s eyes. He didn't magically break out of his depressive state, but he really enjoyed the bath. I realized it was probably the first time he had ever felt clean, had ever had a bath, and had ever been touched lovingly by a human. The ice started dripping.

When he was clean and towel-dried, he actually walked down the hall with me. I sat on the couch patting his head and talking to him. My boyfriend came storming through the door with bags in his arms. He made a big racket and the dog jumped up and ran down the hall. I got up and followed him.

I found him crouching in the corner of the hall and he had peed. He had peed most of the way down the hall while running from my boyfriend. I think he thought the man had come to get him. The ice shattered.

He was our dog.

From that moment on, he was showered with love and affection. He was loved more than any dog could dream of being loved and I don't think he took a second of it for granted. What did he do that I couldn't believe?

He changed my mind about wanting him. Corrected my judgment about his breed and showed me I cannot judge a book by its cover.

Meagan Ireland

6. Lassie Eat Your Heart Out

white and brown dog on roadPhoto by Maud Slaats on Unsplash

This story is about our Australian Shepherd, Freddie. My daughter and her family were visiting for a week a few summers ago. Our grandsons were four and seven at the time. We lived in a cottage in the woods, on a private road—literally no traffic except us.

One morning, I was in the kitchen fixing breakfast when my husband walked past and down the hall towards the front of the house, with Max, our youngest grandson, following behind. I heard the front door open and shut, and assumed they had both gone outside.

A few minutes later, I heard Freddie barking…and barking…and barking. It struck me as a bit out of character for Freddie, but I didn't think much more of it. Then my husband came back through the kitchen, at which point I realized that only Max had gone outside, alone, while my husband had gone into the bathroom!

I ran towards the front door in a panic, knowing Max could have disappeared far into the woods by now. But I still heard Freddie barking. When I got outside, I saw that Max was standing in the road and Freddie was standing directly in front of him, barking. If Max turned, Freddie shifted in front of him again, still barking.

It wasn't typical for him to behave like that—and that's when it hit me. I realized then that Freddie was 'herding' Max, making sure he couldn't go anywhere he could get hurt or lost! I was so proud of Freddie, and so grateful that he understood that Max shouldn't be wandering around outside alone.

Karla Chorny

7. Smart Pup

grey dog running on mud during daytimePhoto by Nathalie SPEHNER on Unsplash

It was raining. I put my dog outside while I went shopping. I came home, put some groceries on the kitchen counter, then went to the back door to let my dog in. She was there, covered in mud. Not just a little dirty, but literally drenched in mud. I slid the back door open and told her she can't come in until she was cleaned off.

I put away the shopping, changed into some old clothes, and was ready to go outside and give her a bath…when there she was in front of the door…CLEAN. I dried her off and let her in. I told her she was so good that she could sleep on the bed tonight. The next morning I found the kiddie pool full of mud.

She “understood" and must have bathed herself. She was always a smart dog.

Douglas Scott

8. Why Is It Raining On My Face

brown horsePhoto by Daniel Bonilla on Unsplash

My ex-wife had horses. She was one of the best in the country at rescuing and rehabbing blind horses. We had several on the farm. A new one showed up that we paid $500 for: a Belgian, which is usually a giant horse. This one had a large head and looked like a skeleton with skin stretched over it.

Bull came to us from a horse auction on an Amish farm. If we did not buy him he was literally going to the glue factory. My ex was not having it and asked me for the money; I, as always, could not say no.

We got the horse to the farm and had the vet come out and she gave him one to two weeks tops. Well, he made it. He was a fighter. We named him Wullvye. We loved the movie The 13th Warrior and named him after the lead viking. We called him Bull for short.

Bull got much better and put on a lot of weight. Despite being blind, he still became the alpha of the herd. The sighted horses even bowed to this mighty horse. But he was a gentle giant. My ex would ride him bareback up the mountain behind our property. But that's not the end of the story.

Bull started to have problems and would not sweat. We had the vet out again. She recommended giving him beer. This is an old race track method. You have not lived till you see a 2,000-pound horse sloshed and swaying back and forth like an intoxicated human while walking.

I know there are many jokes to be made. I know I made them as I laughed my butt off many times. But he endured and was back each night with his herd, his family. But then he became sick again. This time he needed to go to the State Vet school. We got him there. The cost was over $2,000.

As the vets went to put a scope down his throat, he ate it, yes ate it. They did not charge us for it, thankfully, as it cost over $20,000. I do not remember the exact diagnosis, but it was not good and they gave him only months to live. His previous life had taken its toll on his organs.

We did what we could for the guy. He did well for a while and then started to show signs. The day finally came to call the vet and say goodbye. We pulled him out of the pasture and I dug a huge hole with the backhoe as he should always stay with us.

We brought him back in and laid him down. But first, he called out to his herd several times to say goodbye and they responded. The whole herd was on the other side of the fence, everyone; blind and sighted, miniatures and the donkey. The vet did her job and we stayed with him until the end and for a while after.

We covered him as it started to rain. I would bury him when it stopped, but it did not. The rain kept on and on and was a monsoon by feeding time for the horses. Here is where the amazing part begins. The horses never left the fence, not even to eat.

If you know horses, they never pass up a meal, never. They did this night. I checked on them throughout the night and they all stayed on the fence. In the morning, I moved Wullvye into the hole with my ex holding the tarp so the horses could not see. We said our prayers and I filled in the hole.

The ex opened the gate between the pasture and the horses all walked around Bull’s hole one by one and then walked out of the pasture. It was like watching a human funeral procession. I stood in awe and shock along with my ex-wife. The horses went and ate and Cowboy took over the herd; he was second to Bull.

I miss Wullvye even now. I know he is in a better place, running through heaven free of pain and enjoying his just rewards.

Jay Gainer

9. The Rescue

black kittenPhoto by The Lucky Neko on Unsplash

My dog, Dakota, snuck out while I was bringing groceries into the house. I saw her at the creek a few houses down so I finished bringing the groceries in and then grabbed her leash.

I saw that she was on her way home and that she had something in her mouth. She walked by me and into the house then onto her bed. Now I was thinking she’d caught a rabbit and hoped she was not eating it.

I walked in and realized it was a black kitten, and it was getting a bath from her. Dakota and her kitten were together for several years right up to the day Dakota passed.

Debbie Harrington

10. Breakups Are Hard

short-coated tan dogPhoto by Daniel Lincoln on Unsplash

Our family dog was always protective of our daughter. We have three kids, our daughter being the youngest. She was 16-ish and a boy that she was seeing at the time came over. He walked past Jessie, our dog, patted her on the head, and went into my daughter’s room.

About 15 or 20 minutes later he walked out, said bye to the family, and again walked past Jessie. As his foot swung past her, she snapped at his heel. She missed him, thank goodness, and he never even knew what happened or noticed me grabbing her by the collar real quick.

Shocked, as soon as he was outside, I told my daughter, “Jessie just tried to bite Blake!" She said “Good. He just broke up with me!"

Rhonda Conda

11. She’s An Adult

brown short coated dog lying on brown wooden floorPhoto by Aady on Unsplash

I left my Great Dane at the vet to have a cyst removed from between her toes and was to pick her up after work. When I came back, the vet said, “You talk to her as an adult, don’t you?"

I said, “Yes, but how do you know”?

The vet replied, “When I tried to get her into the surgery room, she splayed all four feet and wouldn’t move. I tried coaxing, and calling her sweet names in baby talk—no luck. I finally said, ‘The sooner you come in, the sooner it’ll be over,' and she walked right in”.

Beau Holland

12. Her Little Friend

a small white dog laying on top of a bedPhoto by noelle on Unsplash

Years ago, I lived in a high-rise condo in Chicago. We lived on the 41st floor and there were 10 condo units per floor. At the time, I had two Maltese dogs, Johnny and Edgar. Although they weighed under 15 pounds, I had no idea how big Edgar’s heart really was.

One very cold mid-winter evening, I answered a knock on my door to see my elderly Hungarian neighbor lady standing there, holding a pot in her outstretched arms. She was crying and through her tears and heavy accent she said, “Here. I thought you could use this. I don’t know what to do with this. I don’t need it anymore”.

Then she passed a pot of boiled chicken and rice to me. Upon further discussion, I found out her little Yorkie had passed over the weekend and she always prepared chicken and rice for him nightly. As she turned to walk back to her condo, my little Edgar bolted out of my door and ran ahead of her down the hall.

He sat in front of her door and just looked at the doorknob, completely ignoring my calls for his return. She opened her door and he ran inside, jumped up on the couch, and had made himself comfortable by the time I got there to take him back. “Can he stay for a while?" she asked.

I was unsure what I should do. I did not know her other than in passing on the elevator or in the hall. But I looked at her and then I looked at Edgar, already nestled in on the couch. He was not worried.

So, I finally said yes but only under the condition that she would allow him to come home as soon as he was ready, and she had to leave her door open and I would leave mine open for him to do so. A short time later I heard her door close and when I looked up, Edgar was in my kitchen announcing his return.

The following night at 7 pm Edgar carried on for me to open the kitchen door. I did, and he ran down the hall to her door. He scratched on it until she answered and when she did he pranced inside and jumped on her couch. Again she asked if he could stay and again I agreed.

Throughout the following weeks into the spring, Edgar asked to go. The neighbor opened her door to his scratches and Edgar pranced inside reporting for duty to sit on her couch with her while she worked on her needlepoint and listened to music. An hour or so later he would return.

In the spring she knocked on my door one more time. This time in her extended arms was a plant. “Here," she said. “This plant is my gift to Edgar. I am leaving for the airport now. I am moving back to Hungary. I have family there, but I will surely miss my little friend”.

MD Winner

13. One Way To Stop An Argument

fawn pug in white bathtubPhoto by Heiko Giesberg on Unsplash

I was running a bath and waiting for the water to fill the tub and my dog, Monte, was keeping me company. He basically followed me wherever I went, sleeping at my feet when I had papers to write and sleeping in my bed beside me—with his head on the pillow, just like a person—every night.

My sister came into the bathroom and we got into a huge fight. I don't even remember what it was about. I know we were definitely yelling at each other and each of us was furious with the other. Suddenly, we heard a large splash. Both our heads turned simultaneously to see that Monte was standing in the bathtub.

Monte hated water. He was a huge priss (at 80 pounds) who refused to even put his paws onto damp grass. It took both of us using cheese and more than a little elbow grease to bathe him every month. We were both astonished that Monte was just chilling in a bathtub full of water.

We started laughing so hard that we stopped fighting. After what felt like a few minutes of hysterical laughter, Monte seemed to think his objective was accomplished and jumped back out. We dried him off and he seemed to bask in his success at getting angry siblings to be quiet(er).

Bree P. Strange

14. Where’s Kitty?

a black and white cat sitting in the grassPhoto by Luis van den Bos on Unsplash

I am a veterinarian in a small town. A farmer found Kaycee as a stray and brought her to me after she got hit by a car. She was such a gentle dog. She loved kittens. She liked to put her mouth on them, but she never harmed even the smallest one.

Kaycee was pretty needy, so I took her to work with me nearly every day. We would play a game called “Get the kitty!" If there was a kitten in the building, she’d find it and point it out to me and get all excited. Adult cats were of no interest to her. She tolerated them. They were boring.

We had a black and white kitten as our newest clinic cat. Her name is Cow Spots. We call her Cowy. On this particular day, when Cowy was six months old, and I did not have Kaycee with me like I usually did. Cowy went missing in the morning, but I didn’t know where to look.

When my husband got home from work, I had him bring Kaycee to me at the clinic. I took her around inside the building. I told her, “Get the kitty! Where’s the kitty?" No kitty. I took Kaycee out behind the building. “Get the kitty! Where’s the kitty?"

There’s a house behind the building with an old shed beyond that. Kaycee led me back, sniffing and listening. As we passed the shed, she stopped and looked up at the door. It ran in an overhead track, so the door was loose. I pushed on it and out came Cowy.

She’d slipped out an opening in our back fence, then gone in through that loose shed door to poke about. The door had to be pushed from the outside, so she was stuck. Kaycee saved her life. I would never have found her in there. And that dog knew exactly what I wanted.

Sherrie Hockett

15. The Man Of The House

black smooth-coated dogPhoto by Victor Grabarczyk on Unsplash

Jack is five years old, and a full member of our small family. We don’t treat him like he is the dog—he’s just one of us. And he doesn’t behave like he’s the dog of the family. Our problems are his problems. However trivial they may seem, he tries to understand them and help solve them.

First, he’s the only one in this house dealing with spiders, mice, and other pests. He noticed our reluctance to sort those creatures, so he stepped in. When there’s a spider, we call the only male in the family.

When we can’t find the car keys, the house keys, or other keys, which happens often, he gets off his couch, lets out an annoyed “aaaa—ah," and then proceeds to find the keys for his girls. He never fails.

He’s the one to “answer” when someone knocks at the door, patrols the yard, and makes eye contact with the neighbors. As my previous neighbors put it, “He’s the man of the house”.

He checks on my child several times per night: He gingerly gets off my bed, then goes to check on my daughter, and I can hear a sigh of relief before he cuddles back next to me. Every single night.

He tried to refine his role even more, but living in a dog’s body didn’t help: He broke three keyboards and a mouse before he understood he couldn't use computers.

Teodora Greywoolf

16. Good Dog

black and white short coated dog on green grass fieldPhoto by Conor Brown on Unsplash

When I first got married, we decided to get a dog before our son was born so that he would have a dog companion growing up with him just like I had growing up.

My wife picked out a dog that was eight months old and was, as best as we could tell, a mix between a German Shepherd and a Retriever. She looked more like a Shepherd because of her coat coloring, but Retriever in face shape. My wife decided to name her Samantha (Sammy, for short).

Fast forward a few years and we now have three sons, the youngest of which is about three years old. The two older boys, aged five and seven, went out into our very large backyard to play. There was a strict rule about playing in the backyard which was that nobody was allowed to open the back gate because it led into a drainage ditch.

It only filled with water after a rain and was usually dry, but it had broken concrete lining the bottom. I had to go take care of something in my shed which would only take about 10 minutes. I told my oldest to make sure nothing happened and the three of them were playing in the back corner area where the gate was at.

I remember calling Sammy over to me and telling her to watch the baby (my three-year-old) and make sure he doesn’t get hurt. She jumped up and looked me in the eyes, wagged her tail, and then went off to where the boys were playing. I didn’t really think anything of it until I came back out of the shed to check on them.

I could hear my youngest one whimpering and semi-crying as if something was bothering him, so I looked over to see what was wrong. And that is when I saw something truly amazing.

My three-year-old was trying to pull the latch back on the back fence so he could open it and go out, but Sammy was getting in his face and licking him all while nudging him back away from the gate! I couldn’t believe what I was seeing…he kept smacking her on the back and face, but it didn’t stop her from keeping him away from that fence.

He finally got exasperated and ran away from her crying. As he was running away from her, she looked over at me as if to say, “I got this, hoo-man!" I could go on and on about so many things that Sammy did that surprised us all, but the most amazing thing she did was to come into our lives.

I truly feel that people who own a pet are a better version of themselves.

Sean Smith

17. I’m Satisfied

landscape photography of white box vanPhoto by Joel Moysuh on Unsplash

We adopted a German Shepherd named Rex from our local rescue organization. He was a very sweet dog with an amazingly calm temperament. Except for the mailman. He really, really didn’t like the mailman and seemed to feel that we needed his protection from this daily intruder.

So when the mailman showed up at our front door, Rex would bark ferociously until the mail had been delivered and the mailman was safely on his way. However, one day, to my complete surprise, the mailman came and went with absolutely no reaction from Rex.

So I casually said to him, “Rex, what happened? The mailman came and went and you didn’t even bark”. He stood there, patiently, looking at me while I talked. When I was finished, he walked calmly over to the closed front door, stood there for a moment looking at the door, and then very quietly went, “Woof”.

As in “Satisfied?" If I hadn’t seen him do it, I never would have believed it!

Ginger McKay

18. The Hooligan

person holding gray tabby cat while lying on bedPhoto by Chris Abney on Unsplash

We have a cat named Hooligan—the only cat we’ve not renamed. We adopted him at about six months, knowing he was a Horrible Little Cat. Mostly, he played REALLY rough, so the rescue wanted him to go to a house with experienced cat people AND some older cats to teach him manners…which has mostly worked.

Anyway, after we’d had him for a couple of years, we adopted a pair of kitten siblings—and he immediately ADORED them and took them under his wing, like a combination big brother/uncle.

One morning he came downstairs without the kittens in tow, and when they hadn’t followed in a few minutes, I asked him, “Hooligan! Where are your kittens?" And his eyes went wide, and ears went back, like: “OMG! I forgot the baby on the bus!" and he TORE upstairs—to come down a minute later with the kittens in tow.

Amanda Rene Fisher

19. Cuddly Cat

person holding brown cat on white textilePhoto by Paul Hanaoka on Unsplash

When I was newly pregnant, I was exhausted all the time and needed to rest often. My rescue street tabby, Cazo de Fuerza, who was always affectionate, started a new behavior. As I was lying on my side to nap, Cazo would position himself draped over my hip, so his belly was against my belly—and then he would begin a low satisfied purr.

I've read that cats and dogs can sense an early pregnancy because hormone changes make the mother smell differently; maybe Cazo could also read my physical energy. Whatever it was, he never let me out of his sight from then on and was always purring to my belly whenever I was down.

During the third trimester, I was so huge he had to really stretch to make it across me but he made it!

Susan Spande

20. The Electric Window

golden retriever inside carPhoto by Ja San Miguel on Unsplash

I have three dogs: a Labradoodle, a Standard Poodle, and a Great Dane/Poodle/Lab mix. Driving home one day, my Labradoodle figured out how to open the electric window on my car. The first time may have been an accident but the second time wasn’t and she blocked my hand from the switch.

I have to turn off the windows when she is in my car.

James Barnhart

21. Timeout

dog lying on bedPhoto by Vanessa Serpas on Unsplash

We used to have a brindle mastiff called Zed. He wasn’t the brightest brick in the wall. He was 50 kilograms of lovable dummy.

One of the things that he wasn’t allowed to do was eat the cat’s food but that didn’t stop him from sneakily hoovering it when we weren’t in the room. Zed subscribed to the theory that he only had to do what he’d been told when were around to enforce it.

He had a big blanket-covered basket in the corner where he hung out and slept most of the time but if he misbehaved he went out on the deck for a timeout, which was apparently the most horrifying, cruel, and heartless punishment there was.

He’d cry continuously until he was forgiven and allowed back in whereupon he acted penitent in his corner for a period to demonstrate that he’d learned his lesson and was a better and more moral dog. One time, we left him napping in his basket. My partner and I came in a minute later to find him nose-deep in the cat’s dish.

He looked at us for half a second, stuck his rapacious maw back in the dish, and gulped the scraps down before bailing out the door onto the deck whereupon he sat next to the open door and began to cry and whine as if he was undergoing his timeout punishment.

It was hilarious.


22. The Medical Alert Dog

a black and white dog laying in the leavesPhoto by Rafaëlla Waasdorp on Unsplash

I suffer from chronic cluster headaches. In a typical 24-hour day I can suffer up to 12 attacks, each lasting between 10 minutes to three hours. The severity of my pain is largely dependent on the speed of self-administered treatments, starting with high-flow oxygen.

My dog, Amber, is an English Springer Spaniel, a breed commonly known for their superior ‘sniffability’. From the age of four and without any encouragement she started sleeping in my bed.

Whilst I loved having her with me—she was of great comfort whilst I cried and screamed—I blamed her tapping of my head and waking me as the cause and start of a cluster attack...that is, until I had a stunning revelation.

I realized her tapping was to warn me of an imminent cluster headache. How clever is she, knowing this some 60–90 seconds before me! Critically, however, her warnings allow me valuable seconds to start treatments, especially oxygen, which on its own can abort an attack in as little as 10 minutes.

Even now, aged ten, she still sleeps curled into my stomach and whilst she no longer wakes me before every attack, she still does so for the more painful ones.

Paul Bowdrey

23. The Proud Pony

brown horse with silver round pendant necklacePhoto by Luisa Peter on Unsplash

My family owns horses. One horse we used to have was an old Morab that my sister and I literally learned how to ride on. His name was Buddy, and he was one of the most amazing animals ever.

When we got him, he was already rather old, and we owned him for the rest of his life. However, he soon got too old to ride. This came to me getting a new horse since I needed one to ride. I got the sweetest little mare ever, whose name was Misty.

The story of how I got her is another story, but after about a year of riding her, I was riding bridleless in our arena to work on our connection. Buddy was in the neighboring pasture with the other horses.

Here’s one thing about Buddy, if he ever saw someone outside and it was within five hours of his dinner time, he’d start pacing. It was the reason we could never keep weight on him, he always walked it off!

As I was riding, Misty and I going through our paces, he came up to the fence. Now, I’m not one to think animals have the same emotions as us, but this is an exception. Usually, Buddy would pace and whine and cause a ruckus, but not this time, no, he literally just stood and watched us, and if I do dare to say, looked…proud.

It shook me to my core, never, in my entire life had I seen any animal with such a human expression. He watched us for half an hour, riding around that arena, and that instance has stuck with me for years, and probably always will.

Kit Anand

24. Silly Kitty

selective focus photography of orange and white cat on brown tablePhoto by Amber Kipp on Unsplash

As wonderful as my cat, Nebula, is…she's kinda dumb. Like, she should wear a helmet for her own safety dumb. She'll starve not realizing there's food in her bowl (that she's sniffing) unless she actually sees you put the food in.

One time she was laying on the floor between my pillows while I was making the bed. I looked at her and thought she was adorable and had to take a picture. So, naturally, I took fifty of them. Well, in the middle of them, she got the scare of a lifetime. Supplied entirely by herself.

In her lying position, she arched her back, flung her tail up like the basic Halloween black cat image, and crossed her eyes just to see a pink, textured horror as it landed on her nose. She ran away meowing bloody murder.

She was spooked by her own tongue.

William Goble

25. She Understood

adult yellow Labrador retrieverPhoto by Noémi Macavei-Katócz on Unsplash

I need to comment quickly on my dog Eliza's walking behavior. She was…an exuberant walker. Sometimes hard to control, high energy. I worked hard to give her enough exercise, even tried to rollerblade with her (not good).

One day, I decided to jog with her. We were about a mile from the house, running on an asphalt path. Suddenly my right foot stops in mid-stride. I had one of those slo-mo moments—I looked down and saw it had caught in the loop of my left shoelace.

I knew I was going to fall and I didn't want to get tangled up in the dog leash so I tossed it, fell to the right of the path where it was grassy, hit hard, and rolled. I was absolutely STUNNED by the fall. I had to lay there a few moments before I could get my wits about me. And then I thought, where's the dog?

She had run off about 20 yards and was standing there with her dopey Lab smile. All I could do was raise my left hand and say, “Eliza, come here”. While I was hurt, I wanted to make sure my dog didn't go out in the street. I needed her by me before I could see to my injuries.

But then I worried about when she got there! Eliza had proximity issues. She loved being CLOSE. I used to say if she could crawl inside my skin, it still wouldn't be close enough. Her big dopey Lab smile suddenly became a furrowed brow. She knew something was wrong.

She came to where I was sitting and stood over me, perpendicular to me, about at my knees. And then just looked at me. I thought, okay, this is weird as I fully expected her to be all over me. But I was able to take an inventory of what hurt, bumps, bruises, etc.

I decided to stand so I could check my hip (I hit really hard) and used Eliza to help support me. She just stood there. When I decided to walk, I thought, ugh, she's going to pull. Nope. Eliza took little baby steps, constantly looking up to check me, matching my slow pace. I finally decided to pick up the pace a little, maybe a slow jog.

She actually held back some, being concerned for me, but then she realized I was mostly okay so she did what she did best—became my exuberant walker out for a good time.

Luis Canedo

26. Holding It In

long-coated black and white dog during daytimePhoto by Baptist Standaert on Unsplash

Hoss, a Border Collie. He had been bred and trained to herd cattle, sold to a rancher, failed to herd cattle, returned, retrained, resold, re-returned, and was going to be put down until the lady who had him before us took him in as a pet.

He had four great years with her before she got into bad health and had to move in with her family across the country in California, so we got Hoss. Then my father passed.

There was nowhere for Hoss to stay while we were at the funeral, so we loaded his food bowl and his three-gallon water jug and apologized to him, but he was going to be on his own from one morning to the next night. We ended up having to stay an additional night.

We got home that third night and accepted that this poor dog had to have pooped and peed somewhere in the house. NOPE! This dog held it for THREE DAYS!

We came home and opened the door, he came out, said hi to us, and ran into the woods to poop and pee his brains out! I don’t know how he did it, but I am so grateful that during a stressful time, he didn’t give me one more unpleasant duty.

David Alan Melson Junior

27. Protecting The Neighbor’s Puppy

brown and black yorkshire terrier puppy playing green tennis ball on green grass field during daytimePhoto by Chris Smith on Unsplash

I had a little Yorkshire Terrier, Freddie. He’s gone now, but several years ago when he was quite elderly, about 15 years old, we were returning from our evening walk as usual when suddenly he stopped, appeared to be listening, and turned back the way we had come, looking at me. Since this had never happened before I went along with it.

Fred retraced his route up around the corner of the crescent we live on. A neighbor was standing on his front step. He said, “There's a puppy running around on the street. He must have got out and he won’t come over to me”. I looked over and saw a neighbor's new puppy, a tiny four-pound Yorkshire terrier, gleefully running about like a demented mosquito.

In the dusk, he was hard to see and could easily be hit by a car. Fred and I crossed the street and the puppy ran over to greet my Fred. Together we walked to the puppy’s house and knocked on the door. He scooted in as soon as the neighbor opened his door. Then Fred turned around and trotted back home. Mission accomplished.

Lynn Sherwood

28. The Tiny Defender

short-coated white and brown puppyPhoto by Alec Favale on Unsplash

My dog and cat are not friends. They share the house and a water bowl in a state of quiet tolerance. You will never find them playing or cuddling, but like most tenuous alliances they proved more than willing to unite against a common enemy.

A few weeks ago, my sister went on a week-long trip to visit her kids and left her two dogs here. My poor cat, who barely tolerates my dog on a good day, was absolutely terrified of these new intruders and spent the entire week hiding in my bedroom.

He did not leave that room for any reason. Even the basic food, water, and litter box reasons. All three of those items were unceremoniously placed in my bedroom and that was that. Unfortunately, my bedroom door happens to be broken.

So about the third or fourth day of dog sitting, I happened to be sitting on my bed with my dog and cat, who had decided to emerge from his hiding place under the bed just for the occasion. Everything was peaceful until Roxy, my sister's absolutely enormous German Shepherd, decided to find out what I was up to.

She pushed open the door and barreled her way into the room. The few times I've seen my cat absolutely terrified, I've noticed that instead of running away he freezes in terror and will not move unless someone or something moves him.

My dog has never before displayed any sign of affection for her housemate. But at this moment, she leaped into action. She jumped right over the pathetic, stricken creature and confronted the intruder. My dog is a teacup Chihuahua and weighs all of four pounds. She is about eight inches tall at her highest point.

But the David and Goliath situation didn't seem to bother her at all. She stood her ground between a now thoroughly interested Roxy and an even more thoroughly petrified cat. She barked and nipped at poor Roxy's face, backing up as her opponent advanced. She ended up standing right over my frozen cat's head in an effort to defend him.

After about 30 seconds of barking, growling, and nipping, Roxy retreated to the safety of the couch. My dog, swollen with pride at having driven off the invader, gave her frightened housemate a triumphant sort of whimper and laid back down.

The cat, his paralysis having left with Roxy, threw a scandalized look around the room, stood up, and retreated back under the bed without so much as a meow of thanks for his tiny defender.

Kate Devlin

29. Knows The Difference

black and white dalmatian puppyPhoto by Balmer Rosario on Unsplash

My wife’s Dalmatian was 92 pounds of solid muscle. One day a door-to-door salesman came to the house with a product my wife was willing to buy. He stepped inside and Sebastian sat at his feet, leaned up against him, and treated him like a family member.

A couple of weeks later he came back but with a product in which my wife was uninterested. But he was a bit pushy and started to come inside. My wife said that he suddenly froze. Following his gaze, she saw Sebastian with saliva dripping off his fangs and a growl so low she said she could only feel it in her stomach and never really heard.

Neither one of us had ever seen him do that, but he obviously knew the difference between friendly and unwanted.

Rick Roberts

30. The Couch

a black and brown dog sitting on top of a lush green fieldPhoto by Sabīne Jaunzeme on Unsplash

Emma, a Rottweiler/Bull Mastiff cross. She ate our couch. She was fine until my wife went back to work; she suffered from separation anxiety and took it out on the couch (the dog, not my wife). But what really amazed me is that I would come home to find the couch in different rooms.

She was a powerful dog and would drag it around the house with her. Still not amazed? The room the couch was in was a sunken living room. She had to pull that sucker up three stairs to get it out of the room. We finally threw out her favorite chew toy when she had it down to the wooden frame.

Mike Neville

31. Sharing Milk Bones

adult golden retriever with cookie bone on nosePhoto by McDobbie Hu on Unsplash

A friend and I were in a hotel room with our two dogs. I pulled out a couple of Milk Bones so they could each have one. My friend reminded me that her dog was allergic to some of the ingredients in Milk Bones, and she said her dog could not have one, but said I should go ahead and give one to my dog.

Her dog went to her kennel, sad that she could not have a Milk Bone. My dog took the Milk Bone I gave her and walked over to the kennel, setting the Milk Bone just inside for the other dog.

Beth Slovick

32. The Loo Cat

brown tabby catPhoto by Jae Park on Unsplash

One of our cats, Neo, a three-year-old rescue, prefers to use the toilet, not kitty litter, when inside. Yep. If he needs to go, he hops up onto the loo seat, faces the door, and does his business. So, before we go to bed, we make sure the lid is up, in case he needs to use the loo.

Ben Longden

33. Simone Says

brown and white duck on gray concrete floorPhoto by Ross Sokolovski on Unsplash

We lived out in the country and had a female duck named Simon. After she laid an egg, we renamed her Simone. She dutifully sat on that unfertilized egg for weeks, only leaving it to eat and drink occasionally.

Well, one day, l was sitting with a friend on the back porch and eyeing Simone under the bush with her egg about 15 yards away from us. l said to my friend, “Poor Simone—she doesn’t know that egg will never hatch”.

No sooner had the words left my mouth than she got up, picked her egg up in her mouth, carried it up to us, and threw it down at our feet! Of course, it just exploded into foul-smelling stuff, and she waddled off in disgust, quacking loudly as if to scold me for not telling her sooner.

She never did lay another egg after that.

Carolyn Rill

34. Jealousy

two brown short-coated dogs laying on bedPhoto by Jared Murray on Unsplash

My dog tried to hide her brother’s new bed. After I adopted my two pit bulls, they slept on my bed every night, Niki by my side and Ringo by my feet…until I got into a serious relationship. My girlfriend moved in with me and my bed just wasn’t big enough to hold two people and two pitties.

I had some old dog beds that the dogs were using, but not at night, so we decided to get some new beds. I went out and got the biggest, softest, most comfortable beds I could find but the pet shop only had one of them. They would get some more the next day. I got the bed home and presented it to Ringo, and he loved it!

He slept on it that night, and Niki had to make do with one of the old beds. The next night, I went into the bedroom and the big, new, ultra-cushioned bed was gone. I looked around the apartment, thinking maybe Ringo dragged it somewhere? I checked everywhere, and didn’t find it…until I went back into the bedroom.

There, on the other side of the bed, was Niki PUSHING Ringo’s new bed UNDER my bed WITH HER PAWS! She took his bed, dragged it over, and was actively hiding it from him. When I stopped laughing, I went and got Niki her bed that night, and never had a problem with this since.

Robin L. Stears

35. Stop Bothering Us

black labrador retriever with red collarPhoto by Samuel Girven on Unsplash

Years ago, we had a female Black Lab. She weighed around 90 pounds—a big dog. We had a JW who wouldn’t take no for an answer. He would come to the door, ring, and knock. I was getting really frustrated that I couldn’t deter him from interrupting my day.

One Sunday, he came to the door. Babe must have sensed how peeved I was about this annoyance. She took off to the front door at a full sprint and went through the screen door barking, with her teeth showing. He fell to the ground. She put her front paws on his chest and stood on him, licking his face as she growled.

I came to the door and told him not to come back again or I would give Babe permission to bite him. We were never visited by JWs again.

Robert Brummett

36. Pajama Parties

litter of dogs fall in line beside wallPhoto by Hannah Lim on Unsplash

Our Bruno loved pajama parties and regularly went on a walkabout at night, collecting all his friends, and bringing them home so that any given morning we would wake up to between six and 12 dogs in the garden! No fighting or barking, just a very civilized gathering of strange dogs who came to have a snack at our house!

Never knew where they came from but in the morning they would leave when the gate was opened, only to return again that evening. Bruno cost us a fortune as we had to raise the height of the wall to keep him in, and them out.

Lesley Smit

37. The Morning Kiss

brown cat across person lying on bedPhoto by Adam Kuylenstierna on Unsplash

My cat, Sweetpea, used to have a habit of kissing me awake in the morning. Not lick; literally sitting on my chest and deliberately putting her really, really ticklish, fuzzy mouth on mine and holding it there. I think she was in that phase of discovering ways to get me out of bed to feed her and her sister.

Erin Wood

38. A Team Effort

black and grey otter animalPhoto by Steve Tsang on Unsplash

Several years ago, I had a group of ferrets: three boys and one tiny girl who was under a pound. One day I came into the kitchen and saw them by the cupboard, so I thought they were wanting a treat. I reached over for the treat bag, just in time to see my little girl poke her nose out of the silverware drawer.

Now, being so tiny, she couldn't reach the cupboard door without a little help. I looked down at the boys, who were all patiently awaiting their treat…and when I pulled their sister out of the drawer…they all looked away as if to disown her.

I placed her on the floor, where everyone sniffed and greeted her. Then within a few moments, I heard scratching at the cupboard. I got up quietly and, peeking around the corner, saw one of my boys getting the cupboard door open just wide enough for his sister to get in.

Within a few seconds, she climbed up the inside of the drawers. Upon reaching the top she poked her head out, looked around, walked up to the treat bag…and pushed it on the floor.

Sandra Lang

39. Separation Anxiety

a german shepherd dog sitting on a dirt roadPhoto by Bella Pisani on Unsplash

I had a Belgian Shepherd named Marley. She was a rescue dog and had separation anxiety. When she was about seven, I had left the house and was driving a two-way main thoroughfare, two blocks from home, when movement caught my eye to my left.

To my surprise, I saw Marley in full sprint in the opposite lane, tongue out, keeping pace with my car and looking at me with a happy glint in her eyes. Just as I was going to react and pull over…suddenly the side of a GMC van blasted by the other way accompanied by a solid THUD! Marley disappeared from sight.

I freaked out, pulled over, and ran back to where she got hit. No sign of her. Then I heard panting behind me. I turned around and there was Marley, wagging her tail, so happy I stopped. I examined her head to tail in my panicked state…and no sign of injury.

Horace Manaford

40. Sweet Stealer

black pug looking at piePhoto by charlesdeluvio on Unsplash

Being a private tutor at home, I put sweets in a bowl on a trolley for pupils to take after each weekly lesson.

One day, I looked out to the back garden from my kitchen window and saw my dog eating something that looked like a sweet. So she must have found one that was dropped on the floor in the hallway! I knew I couldn't get it back from her because by the time I got out there, she would have finished it or run away with it. I was steaming mad.

In no time, she came back through her dog flap, looking pleased, and I could see the wrapper was still on the grass. I turned and yelled at her, “You naughty dog, you stole my sweet! Where is the wrapper? Bring me back the wrapper!" She immediately ran out, took the wrapper, and brought it back to me, again looking pleased with herself.

I was dumbfounded.

Shirley Marr

41. The Singer

a large black dog sitting on top of a tiled floorPhoto by Maiar Shalaby on Unsplash

I had a large dog named Max who I found wandering the neighborhood. One day when he was about six months old, we were relaxing on the couch and I called my sister-in-law to wish her a happy birthday. I knew she was at work so I started singing Happy Birthday to her answering machine.

Suddenly, Max lifted his huge head with a startled look and he started howling with my singing. Startled me so much that I dropped the phone. He stopped howling. I grabbed the phone and finished my song and so did he. So I started testing him. I sang Christmas songs, New Year songs, and everything I could think of. No reaction at all.

He didn’t cover his ears but he was not interested. So I called everyone I knew and sang Happy Birthday and he sang with me. He was strangely in tune.

Dyan Richardson

42. The Weather Cat

white and brown long fur catPhoto by Alvan Nee on Unsplash

Three weeks ago I was at my son’s house getting ready to help him mix and pour concrete for the foundation of a storage shed. He went to the building supply store the night before and got 30 sacks of premix concrete for us to use the next day.

DJ the cat, curious about everything, hopped up into the back of his pickup and was inspecting, sniffing, and patting the sacks of dry mix as we discussed whether to cover them with a tarp.

“Nah, it’s not going to rain,” was our conclusion.

At five in the morning, I was awakened by DJ’s insistent yowls. I lifted the window blind and there she was on the window’s brick ledge carrying on. I thought, “Great. Just when I need some sleep, that cat wakes me up". Then I heard dink…tink…tink-dink…

Tiny raindrops. I hollered for my son and he quickly ran out and covered the concrete sacks with a tarp while I moved his car from under the carport for him to back the truck under. No sooner had he put it under the carport than the heavens opened up and two inches of rain fell in an hour. DJ saved $250 worth of concrete.

Farmall Emta

43. The Persistent Pooper

adultgolden retrieverPhoto by John Price on Unsplash

We have a specific plant in our garden and my dog wouldn't stop pooping on them. Them specifically. So I took some firewood planks and stuck them in the ground as a makeshift fence around them.

It worked for a few days until she crawled past the gap between the plant and the hedge, did a reverse turn, and pooped on my plant again. Persistence at its best!


44. The Drama Queen

brown rabbit on window during daytimePhoto by Ансплэш Степана on Unsplash

I went out of town for a weekend. I lined up a friend to stay with my rabbit while I was gone. I was just heading back to my house when I suddenly got a call from my friend. She told me to get home NOW. She said the rabbit was acting really weird. Listless, turning down treats—all things that point to the beginnings of GI Stasis which is bad.

I got home and sat with her for about 20 minutes. Yep, she was showing signs. Got her to the emergency vet. $300 for the vet to tell me her diagnosis: drama queen. The rabbit was just upset that I wasn't home.


45. That’ll Show You

blue parakeet on handPhoto by Alexander Grey on Unsplash

One time, my bird was really mad about bedtime. She flew to the curtain, peeped loudly until I watched, then pooped on the curtain while looking straight at me. She was poop-trained and definitely knew what she was doing.


46. The Disrespectful Dog

two golden retriever on floorPhoto by REGINE THOLEN on Unsplash

One of my dogs used the other dog as a stepping stool to climb up on the couch. Straight up, he walked on top of the one laying next to the couch to get up there. Just blatant disrespect.


47. A Cat And His Bell

russian blue cat lying on white textilePhoto by Milada Vigerova on Unsplash

I have a little cat. My neighbor has a colony of feral cats living on her property and she called me one day and said, “Hey, you’ve got to come over and see this kitten”.

So I went over and we were talking on her front verandah and she said, “Here he comes”. This tiny ball of gray fur bounced around the corner of the house and ran straight up to us. He promptly climbed up my jeans and curled up in my hands.

It was so hard putting him down and going home, but I knew I’d be back for him the next day. I needed to get some stuff together for him first: a bed, a litter tray, food and water bowls, and kitten food.

This little kitten literally fell into my lap. He had one toy that was his absolute favorite. It was a little plush, stuffed red bell, with a jingly bell on it, that came in a cat’s Christmas stocking. He would carry it all over the house. You would hear the little bell coming and then he’d trot into the room with it in his mouth.

Then I discovered something that I thought was a fluke the first time, but after a few times, I realized it wasn't a fluke after all. This cat would fetch. I’ve had cats that would chase fluffy things on a string and pounce on balls rolling across the floor, but not actively fetch.

He dropped the little red bell at my feet. I picked it up and threw it across the room for him to chase. And then he brought it back and dropped it at my feet again. I was gobsmacked. I threw it across the room again and he joyfully chased it, picked it up, trotted back to me, and dropped it again.

Sarah Blair

48. But Can He Fit Four

brown and white short coated dog sitting on brown sand during daytimePhoto by Vidhey PV on Unsplash

At the dog park, years back, we were approaching a pond. There was this big dog in the water that looked horribly disfigured—like it must’ve tried fetching a live grenade. Poor thing. Whatever; life goes on. He was happily playing with two other dogs in the water.

As I got closer, trying to discreetly check out his messed up mouth parts, the dog dropped three tennis balls out of his mouth and suddenly went back to being a normal, non-disfigured Boxer!


49. Maybe She Just Wanted Another Bath

black and grey otter animalPhoto by Steve Tsang on Unsplash

For Christmas, my mom bought me a cute, four-legged, long fuzzy bundle of joy. My ferret Harli Quinn! I had never owned a ferret before so learning the ways of my new fur baby was somewhat challenging.

After reading blog posts, articles, and books on the ways of the ferret I somehow overlooked the part where ferrets were natural-born borrowers.

With that said, when it came time for Harli's first bath, I was 100% prepared! Water a little above lukewarm but not as hot as humans prefer, name-brand ferret deodorizing shampoo, and a pink rubber duck family pack ready for ferret bath fun! All I needed was the weasel.

Luckily she was standing by my feet, curious as to what I was doing in the kitchen sink, so I picked her up and slowly put her in. I could tell this wasn't her first bath. Unfortunately, she didn't seem as excited about it as I thought, so I picked her up and added some cool water just to rule out any temperature issues.

Put her back in and nope! It was the total opposite reaction to the ‘ferrets during bath time' videos I had watched on YouTube. No fun splashing, circle-swimming, rubber-duck-playing, ferret-loving-to-swim for her. She just stood there patiently waiting for me to clean and rinse her.

So, I shampooed her and began rinsing her off. Just when all of the soap suds were out of her fur, ferret poop filled the sink. So, we shampooed one more time and had a successful rinse. I reach over to grab the towel that I thought I put on the right side of the sink, but then I realize it was actually behind me, well over an arm’s length away.

I didn't want to make her even colder by running her to the other side of the kitchen so I left her in the sink as I made the fastest ‘other side of the kitchen dash' I had ever made in my life. I turned to run back to the sink to find that Harli was missing!

My initial thought was “Oh no! My poor baby fell off the counter and is hurt, cold, and…” Before I could finish my thought I heard scraping in the plastic pot of my chili pepper plant on the sink counter by the window.

As I walked closer, Miracle Grow was being flung in every direction, and I have to admit the trajectory in which the dirt flew was pretty impressive for such a small critter. Within the seconds it took for me to grab a towel and run to the pepper plant, Harli had already made her way to the bottom of the little bush and was covered in dirt—again.

Christina Willett

50. Oh, Mandy

shallow focus photo of long-coated black and white puppyPhoto by Andrea Lightfoot on Unsplash

I adopted a five-month-old Border Collie mix puppy from local animal control. They didn’t bring her out to meet me. After I filled out the paperwork and paid the fee, the tech came out and said she’d take me back and let me get her out of the kennel.

I knew this was not their normal policy, but didn’t really think anything about it. I had the slip leash ready, and when the gate was opened, this poor pup nearly went into convulsions. She cowered in the back corner and screeched. They finally told me everything they had failed to say earlier.

She had been owned by a man who mercilessly hit her, kicked her for a potty accident, and screamed at her just because. He’d destroyed her spirit. I did not change my mind about taking her with me. I carried her to my car and settled both of us in. I spent a good amount of time just stroking and talking softly to her.

She was a little calmer so I started towards home but took the very long way. After an extended period of time in the car together we finally arrived. I took her out back to meet our other dog, fed her, and left her alone for a while.

The first few times I went out the sliding door to see her, she jumped in the bushes and stayed hidden until she heard me say her name. Then she would come out and greet me. I was at home another two months before I moved into the house at my dad’s tree farm.

I would let Mandy out early in the morning, and she still continued to hide as my dad would get out of his truck to open the gate into the nursery. When I brought her home, I vowed I would protect her and keep her safe. By the time we’d been living at the tree farm for about two months, she totally became MY protector.

When a stranger would drive up to the house, she was so calm, but stayed about three feet away from them as they got out of the car and walked to my door. The moment the person finished knocking, Mandy would gently clamp onto their ankle, not hurting them but a definite warning.

When I answered the door, she still held on. I’d be asked to call her off, but I told them I had to know who they were and what they wanted. Once I was satisfied all I had to say was, “They’re OK, Mandy”. Not excitedly, but calmly, very matter of fact.

She did this for the rest of her life. And she did not discriminate. She did this to a number of my dad’s customers, utility workers, personal friends, and one time a detective—twice.

Jody Oakes

People Reveal The Weirdest Thing About Themselves

Reddit user Isitjustmedownhere asked: 'Give an example; how weird are you really?'

Let's get one thing straight: no one is normal. We're all weird in our own ways, and that is actually normal.

Of course, that doesn't mean we don't all have that one strange trait or quirk that outweighs all the other weirdness we possess.

For me, it's the fact that I'm almost 30 years old, and I still have an imaginary friend. Her name is Sarah, she has red hair and green eyes, and I strongly believe that, since I lived in India when I created her and there were no actual people with red hair around, she was based on Daphne Blake from Scooby-Doo.

I also didn't know the name Sarah when I created her, so that came later. I know she's not really there, hence the term 'imaginary friend,' but she's kind of always been around. We all have conversations in our heads; mine are with Sarah. She keeps me on task and efficient.

My mom thinks I'm crazy that I still have an imaginary friend, and writing about her like this makes me think I may actually be crazy, but I don't mind. As I said, we're all weird, and we all have that one trait that outweighs all the other weirdness.

Redditors know this all too well and are eager to share their weird traits.

It all started when Redditor Isitjustmedownhere asked:

"Give an example; how weird are you really?"

Monsters Under My Bed

"My bed doesn't touch any wall."

"Edit: I guess i should clarify im not rich."

– Practical_Eye_3600

"Gosh the monsters can get you from any angle then."

– bikergirlr7

"At first I thought this was a flex on how big your bedroom is, but then I realized you're just a psycho 😁"

– zenOFiniquity8

Can You See Why?

"I bought one of those super-powerful fans to dry a basement carpet. Afterwards, I realized that it can point straight up and that it would be amazing to use on myself post-shower. Now I squeegee my body with my hands, step out of the shower and get blasted by a wide jet of room-temp air. I barely use my towel at all. Wife thinks I'm weird."

– KingBooRadley


"In 1990 when I was 8 years old and bored on a field trip, I saw a black Oldsmobile Cutlass driving down the street on a hot day to where you could see that mirage like distortion from the heat on the road. I took a “snapshot” by blinking my eyes and told myself “I wonder how long I can remember this image” ….well."

– AquamarineCheetah

"Even before smartphones, I always take "snapshots" by blinking my eyes hoping I'll remember every detail so I can draw it when I get home. Unfortunately, I may have taken so much snapshots that I can no longer remember every detail I want to draw."

"Makes me think my "memory is full.""

– Reasonable-Pirate902

Same, Same

"I have eaten the same lunch every day for the past 4 years and I'm not bored yet."

– OhhGoood

"How f**king big was this lunch when you started?"

– notmyrealnam3

Not Sure Who Was Weirder

"Had a line cook that worked for us for 6 months never said much. My sous chef once told him with no context, "Baw wit da baw daw bang daw bang diggy diggy." The guy smiled, left, and never came back."

– Frostygrunt


"I pace around my house for hours listening to music imagining that I have done all the things I simply lack the brain capacity to do, or in some really bizarre scenarios, I can really get immersed in these imaginations sometimes I don't know if this is some form of schizophrenia or what."

– RandomSharinganUser

"I do the same exact thing, sometimes for hours. When I was young it would be a ridiculous amount of time and many years later it’s sort of trickled off into almost nothing (almost). It’s weird but I just thought it’s how my brain processes sh*t."

– Kolkeia

If Only

"Even as an adult I still think that if you are in a car that goes over a cliff; and right as you are about to hit the ground if you jump up you can avoid the damage and will land safely. I know I'm wrong. You shut up. I'm not crying."

– ShotCompetition2593

Pet Food

"As a kid I would snack on my dog's Milkbones."

– drummerskillit

"Haha, I have a clear memory of myself doing this as well. I was around 3 y/o. Needless to say no one was supervising me."

– Isitjustmedownhere

"When I was younger, one of my responsibilities was to feed the pet fish every day. Instead, I would hide under the futon in the spare bedroom and eat the fish food."

– -GateKeep-

My Favorite Subject

"I'm autistic and have always had a thing for insects. My neurotypical best friend and I used to hang out at this local bar to talk to girls, back in the late 90s. One time he claimed that my tendency to circle conversations back to insects was hurting my game. The next time we went to that bar (with a few other friends), he turned and said sternly "No talking about bugs. Or space, or statistics or other bullsh*t but mainly no bugs." I felt like he was losing his mind over nothing."

"It was summer, the bar had its windows open. Our group hit it off with a group of young ladies, We were all chatting and having a good time. I was talking to one of these girls, my buddy was behind her facing away from me talking to a few other people."

"A cloudless sulphur flies in and lands on little thing that holds coasters."

"Cue Jordan Peele sweating gif."

"The girl notices my tension, and asks if I am looking at the leaf. "Actually, that's a lepidoptera called..." I looked at the back of my friend's head, he wasn't looking, "I mean a butterfly..." I poked it and it spread its wings the girl says "oh that's a BUG?!" and I still remember my friend turning around slowly to look at me with chastisement. The ONE thing he told me not to do."

"I was 21, and was completely not aware that I already had a rep for being an oddball. It got worse from there."

– Phormicidae

*Teeth Chatter*

"I bite ice cream sometimes."


"That's how I am with popsicles. My wife shudders every single time."


Never Speak Of This

"I put ice in my milk."


"You should keep that kind of thing to yourself. Even when asked."

– We-R-Doomed

"There's some disturbing sh*t in this thread, but this one takes the cake."

– RatonaMuffin

More Than Super Hearing

"I can hear the television while it's on mute."

– Tira13e

"What does it say to you, child?"

– Mama_Skip


"I put mustard on my omelettes."

– Deleted User


– NotCrustOr-filling

Evened Up

"Whenever I say a word and feel like I used a half of my mouth more than the other half, I have to even it out by saying the word again using the other half of my mouth more. If I don't do it correctly, that can go on forever until I feel it's ok."

"I do it silently so I don't creep people out."

– LesPaltaX

"That sounds like a symptom of OCD (I have it myself). Some people with OCD feel like certain actions have to be balanced (like counting or making sure physical movements are even). You should find a therapist who specializes in OCD, because they can help you."

– MoonlightKayla

I totally have the same need for things to be balanced! Guess I'm weird and a little OCD!

Close up face of a woman in bed, staring into the camera
Photo by Jen Theodore

Experiencing death is a fascinating and frightening idea.

Who doesn't want to know what is waiting for us on the other side?

But so many of us want to know and then come back and live a little longer.

It would be so great to be sure there is something else.

But the whole dying part is not that great, so we'll have to rely on other people's accounts.

Redditor AlaskaStiletto wanted to hear from everyone who has returned to life, so they asked:

"Redditors who have 'died' and come back to life, what did you see?"


Happy Good Vibes GIF by Major League SoccerGiphy

"My dad's heart stopped when he had a heart attack and he had to be brought back to life. He kept the paper copy of the heart monitor which shows he flatlined. He said he felt an overwhelming sensation of peace, like nothing he had felt before."



"I had surgical complications in 2010 that caused a great deal of blood loss. As a result, I had extremely low blood pressure and could barely stay awake. I remember feeling like I was surrounded by loved ones who had passed. They were in a circle around me and I knew they were there to guide me onwards. I told them I was not ready to go because my kids needed me and I came back."

"My nurse later said she was afraid she’d find me dead every time she came into the room."

"It took months, and blood transfusions, but I recovered."


Take Me Back

"Overwhelming peace and happiness. A bright airy and floating feeling. I live a very stressful life. Imagine finding out the person you have had a crush on reveals they have the same feelings for you and then you win the lotto later that day - that was the feeling I had."

"I never feared death afterward and am relieved when I hear of people dying after suffering from an illness."



The Light Minnie GIF by (G)I-DLEGiphy

"I had a heart surgery with near-death experience, for me at least (well the possibility that those effects are caused by morphine is also there) I just saw black and nothing else but it was warm and I had such inner peace, its weird as I sometimes still think about it and wish this feeling of being so light and free again."


This is why I hate surgery.

You just never know.



"More of a near-death experience. I was electrocuted. I felt like I was in a deep hole looking straight up in the sky. My life flashed before me. Felt sad for my family, but I had a deep sense of peace."



"Nursing in the ICU, we’ve had people try to die on us many times during the years, some successfully. One guy stood out to me. His heart stopped. We called a code, are working on him, and suddenly he comes to. We hadn’t vented him yet, so he was able to talk, and he started screaming, 'Don’t let them take me, don’t let them take me, they are coming,' he was scared and yelling."

"Then he yelled a little more, as we tried to calm him down, he screamed, 'No, No,' and gestured towards the end of the bed, and died again. We didn’t get him back. It was seriously creepy. We called his son to tell him the news, and the son said basically, 'Good, he was an SOB.'”



"My sister died and said it was extremely peaceful. She said it was very loud like a train station and lots of talking and she was stuck in this area that was like a curtain with lots of beautiful colors (colors that you don’t see in real life according to her) a man told her 'He was sorry, but she had to go back as it wasn’t her time.'"


"I had a really similar experience except I was in an endless garden with flowers that were colors I had never seen before. It was quiet and peaceful and a woman in a dress looked at me, shook her head, and just said 'Not yet.' As I was coming back, it was extremely loud, like everyone in the world was trying to talk all at once. It was all very disorienting but it changed my perspective on life!"


The Fog

"I was in a gray fog with a girl who looked a lot like a young version of my grandmother (who was still alive) but dressed like a pioneer in the 1800s she didn't say anything but kept pulling me towards an opening in the wall. I kept refusing to go because I was so tired."

"I finally got tired of her nagging and went and that's when I came to. I had bled out during a c-section and my heart could not beat without blood. They had to deliver the baby and sew up the bleeders. refill me with blood before they could restart my heart so, like, at least 12 minutes gone."


Through the Walls

"My spouse was dead for a couple of minutes one miserable night. She maintains that she saw nothing, but only heard people talking about her like through a wall. The only thing she remembers for absolute certain was begging an ER nurse that she didn't want to die."

"She's quite alive and well today."


Well let's all be happy to be alive.

It seems to be all we have.

Man's waist line
Santhosh Vaithiyanathan/Unsplash

Trying to lose weight is a struggle understood by many people regardless of size.

The goal of reaching a healthy weight may seem unattainable, but with diet and exercise, it can pay off through persistence and discipline.

Seeing the pounds gradually drop off can also be a great motivator and incentivize people to stay the course.

Those who've achieved their respective weight goals shared their experiences when Redditor apprenti8455 asked:

"People who lost a lot of weight, what surprises you the most now?"

Redditors didn't see these coming.

Shiver Me Timbers

"I’m always cold now!"

– Telrom_1

"I had a coworker lose over 130 pounds five or six years ago. I’ve never seen him without a jacket on since."

– r7ndom

"140 lbs lost here starting just before COVID, I feel like that little old lady that's always cold, damn this top comment was on point lmao."

– mr_remy

Drawing Concern

"I lost 100 pounds over a year and a half but since I’m old(70’s) it seems few people comment on it because (I think) they think I’m wasting away from some terminal illness."

– dee-fondy

"Congrats on the weight loss! It’s honestly a real accomplishment 🙂"

"Working in oncology, I can never comment on someone’s weight loss unless I specifically know it was on purpose, regardless of their age. I think it kind of ruffles feathers at times, but like I don’t want to congratulate someone for having cancer or something. It’s a weird place to be in."

– LizardofDeath

Unleashing Insults

"I remember when I lost the first big chunk of weight (around 50 lbs) it was like it gave some people license to talk sh*t about the 'old' me. Old coworkers, friends, made a lot of not just negative, but harsh comments about what I used to look like. One person I met after the big loss saw a picture of me prior and said, 'Wow, we wouldn’t even be friends!'”

"It wasn’t extremely common, but I was a little alarmed by some of the attention. My weight has been up and down since then, but every time I gain a little it gets me a little down thinking about those things people said."

– alanamablamaspama

Not Everything Goes After Losing Weight

"The loose skin is a bit unexpected."

– KeltarCentauri

"I haven’t experienced it myself, but surgery to remove skin takes a long time to recover. Longer than bariatric surgery and usually isn’t covered by insurance unless you have both."

– KatMagic1977

"It definitely does take a long time to recover. My Dad dropped a little over 200 pounds a few years back and decided to go through with skin removal surgery to deal with the excess. His procedure was extensive, as in he had skin taken from just about every part of his body excluding his head, and he went through hell for weeks in recovery, and he was bedridden for a lot of it."

– Jaew96

These Redditors shared their pleasantly surprising experiences.


"I can buy clothes in any store I want."

– WaySavvyD

"When I lost weight I was dying to go find cute, smaller clothes and I really struggled. As someone who had always been restricted to one or two stores that catered to plus-sized clothing, a full mall of shops with items in my size was daunting. Too many options and not enough knowledge of brands that were good vs cheap. I usually went home pretty frustrated."

– ganache98012

No More Symptoms

"Lost about 80 pounds in the past year and a half, biggest thing that I’ve noticed that I haven’t seen mentioned on here yet is my acid reflux and heartburn are basically gone. I used to be popping tums every couple hours and now they just sit in the medicine cabinet collecting dust."

– colleennicole93

Expanding Capabilities

"I'm all for not judging people by their appearance and I recognise that there are unhealthy, unachievable beauty standards, but one thing that is undeniable is that I can just do stuff now. Just stamina and flexibility alone are worth it, appearance is tertiary at best."

– Ramblonius

People Change Their Tune

"How much nicer people are to you."

"My feet weren't 'wide' they were 'fat.'"

– LiZZygsu

"Have to agree. Lost 220 lbs, people make eye contact and hold open doors and stuff"

"And on the foot thing, I also lost a full shoe size numerically and also wear regular width now 😅"

– awholedamngarden

It's gonna take some getting used to.

Bones Everywhere

"Having bones. Collarbones, wrist bones, knee bones, hip bones, ribs. I have so many bones sticking out everywhere and it’s weird as hell."

– Princess-Pancake-97

"I noticed the shadow of my ribs the other day and it threw me, there’s a whole skeleton in here."

– bekastrange

Knee Pillow

"Right?! And they’re so … pointy! Now I get why people sleep with pillows between their legs - the knee bones laying on top of each other (side sleeper here) is weird and jarring."

– snic2030

"I lost only 40 pounds within the last year or so. I’m struggling to relate to most of these comments as I feel like I just 'slimmed down' rather than dropped a ton. But wow, the pillow between the knees at night. YES! I can relate to this. I think a lot of my weight was in my thighs. I never needed to do this up until recently."

– Strongbad23

More Mobility

"I’ve lost 100 lbs since 2020. It’s a collection of little things that surprise me. For at least 10 years I couldn’t put on socks, or tie my shoes. I couldn’t bend over and pick something up. I couldn’t climb a ladder to fix something. Simple things like that I can do now that fascinate me."

"Edit: Some additional little things are sitting in a chair with arms, sitting in a booth in a restaurant, being able to shop in a normal store AND not needing to buy the biggest size there, being able to easily wipe my butt, and looking down and being able to see my penis."

– dma1965

People making significant changes, whether for mental or physical health, can surely find a newfound perspective on life.

But they can also discover different issues they never saw coming.

That being said, overcoming any challenge in life is laudable, especially if it leads to gaining confidence and ditching insecurities.