By Ronai Rivera, Humane Pennsylvania Media Coordinator, and Chelsea Cappellano, Donor Relations Manager
April 24 is National Pet Parents Day! To celebrate, we asked our Media Coordinator, Ronai Rivera, and Donor Relations Manager, Chelsea Cappellano, what they love about being pet parents.
Ronai & Athena:
National Pet Parents Day is a holiday that’s very special to me. Truly, one of my greatest joys in life is being a dog mom to Athena, my 6-year-old American Staffordshire mix. Every day is a mini adventure, and I’m always looking forward to what she can teach me.
Athena found me in January 2016, when I was searching for the perfect pup to call my own. I had grown up with lots of animals and, as I was living alone across the country, I felt it would be the perfect time to find a companion to share my life with. A family friend mentioned they had a puppy that they loved but could no longer care for. I immediately went to meet Athena, and I fell in love with her instantly.
Every day since has been filled with so much love and many life lessons. From understanding her communication style to educating myself about her environmental allergies, and the everyday experiences that come along with being a dog parent, it’s safe to say that no dog-day is the same — and every day is very much worth it.
Athena has seen me through many life experiences and, every time, she gave me a shoulder to lean on (literally, she would just come up by me and sit). She has traveled across the U.S. with me and explored many parts of different states — waggin’ her tail happily along the way.
Athena is, in my own dog mom opinion, a very unique pup with many fun(ny) characteristics to love. Some of Athena’s great loves include:
- Dressing up (yes, I’m serious!)
- Eating (of course)
- Attention (and lots of it!)
- Cuddling (she thinks she’s a teacup pup)
- Playing with her best friends Lola (dog) and Aliyah (human)
Athena is certainly a character all her own. She is so full of love and life, and she brightens the day of everyone she comes across. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about how thankful I am to share my life with my pawsome pup.
Thank you, Athena, for choosing me to be your dog mom!
Chelsea & Fur-riends:
As a pet parent to many furry and feathery creatures, National Pet Parents Day is a holiday that hits very close to home for me. There were always animals in our house when I was growing up, and I knew that when I had the opportunity to have my own space, I would always have an animal companion by my side.
I very much exceeded that expectation and desire for my life. Our home sits on a lot of land, and our family currently includes dogs, cats, and chickens, and goats are coming soon!. Like people, each animal in our household has their own personality.
- Zea: 3-year-old female Belgian Malinois. Full-time Police K9. Off the clock, she is a complete goofball and squeaker-ball lover. When she wants to snuggle, she must be touching one of her humans.
- Duke: 2-year-old male American Pitbull Terrier mix. Definite mama’s boy. Usually, he is a couch potato, but he occasionally gets bursts of energy and wants nothing more than to play.
- Kuma: 6-year-old male Shib Inu. Enjoys playtime with his fur siblings, but is always trying to plan his next great escape.
- Reuben: 8-year-old male orange tabby. Super affectionate and loves lap cuddles.
- Bronson: 8-year-old male white and orange tabby. Very vocal and craves human attention. Prefers his feline friends over canine friends.
- Paw Newman: 8-year-old male orange tabby. A little more independent, but loves feeding time.
- Milo: 8-year-old male white and brown tabby. Friendly, but prefers to be the big man in charge.
- Luna: 8-year-old female tortoiseshell. The only female feline, she holds her own through her sass. More independent than not, but appreciates occasional pets and playtime.
- The chickens are a bit more independent, but occasionally allow us to stroke their feathers. They absolutely love spending their time free-roaming. Burrowing, digging around in the dirt, and eating fun snacks are a few of their favorite activities while exploring the yard.
- While we’re still trying to come up with their names, these kids will be the newest addition to our little farm! They are Nigerian Dwarfs and tend to be very lovable and gentle in nature.
The passion and love animals have to offer is something I hope everyone gets to experience. It is a feeling of fulfillment that I can’t even begin to explain. I am so thankful I get to experience it every day through all breeds, shapes, and sizes.
Make one of the pawsome animals in our care yours by visiting humanepa.org.