When we published Almost Perfect: Disabled Pets and the People Who Love Them, there was no other book available that was devoted solely to the stories of special needs pets. Within a year of its publication, there were three other similar titles. Conventional wisdom in the publishing industry is that if there’s no other book like the one you want to publish, there’s probably a good reason for it — namely, that no one’s probably interested in reading such a book. We knew all that, but we believed the time had come for our anthology about the joys and challenges of living with disabled pets, so we took the chance. And we’re thrilled that we did. It seems we pioneered the genre — an honor usually reserved for the Big Six publishers and their imprints, who can afford to take such a gamble.
The truth is, we really didn’t believe we were gambling. As the mom of four disabled cats myself, and knowing several other disabled pet parents, I knew there were readers out there hungry for more information about living with special needs pets; looking for connection with other disabled pet parents like us. The continued sales of Almost Perfect — including our first foray into eBooks — along with what is now a plethora of similarly themed titles by other publishers, proves that we were right.
And now, there’s an increasing amount of anecdotal evidence from veterinarians that indeed, a trend is afoot among their patients’ families to consider living with a less-than-perfect pet rather than having injured animals euthanized. And we’re excited about that, since the main theme of our book — and this blog — is the fact that special needs pets, though admittedly more work, still make great companions and are worth the extra effort, because they can still live happy, full lives and enrich our own as pet families.
“Today, people consider their animals part of the family,” says Walter Renberg, DVM, a professor of small-animal surgery at Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine. “They’re less willing to euthanize a pet if there’s something they can do to sustain that relationship.” And often, there is something they can do.
Here at Almost Perfect Pets, we’ve also received calls and emails from pet parents whose beloved animal was in danger of being euthanized for an injury, who were desperately searching for an alternative to that death sentence, which bears out Dr. Renberg’s statement. We’re happy they reached out, and we’ve been able to put them in contact with groups and information to help them — a deeply gratifying outcome.
We’re very happy to share the rest of this conversation with you today in the form of LIFE WITH A DISABLED PET: TOOLS AND TIPS THAT HELP, a post from PawNation. In these times of so much bad news, we’re thrilled to be able to spread this great news, in the hopes that it will help people struggling with their own decisions about keeping an injured family pet alive or even adopting an almost perfect pet from the start. Please pass this information on to anyone you know who may be needing it. Roll on!