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BEASTS OF BURDEN
Employees at pet businesses let the cat right out of the bag and reveal their funniest encounters with pets and pet owners. These are the very best.

We came into work one day and found a field mouse snuggled up with one of our cats in the kennel. The mouse was nestled between the front leg and chin of the cat. We woke the mouse and put him back in the field, without one hair harmed on the mouse. – Chippewa County Humane Association

A Cocker Spaniel came into the shelter as a stray and was in need of a grooming. As we began shaving the pooch, we discovered a nest of pinky mice in one of the mats on the side of the dog’s body. The dog didn’t seem to mind carrying around extra passengers. – Chippewa County Humane Association

I used to teach classes years and years ago. When a dog comes “into season,” I told students that we can’t have them in the class because it’s distracting to the other dogs. Well one guy raises his hand and asks what are the signs of a dog “coming into season.”  So I delicately explained it to him, and provided the age at which this arises. He responds, “Well my dog, he’s a year-and-a-half and he’s never had that happen.” – Lisa Van Fleet, Birdstone Labradors

One day I gave all my labs big bones and let them out in the yard. Well every so often Wilson, a black lab of mine, would make a wild grab for something near his leg. So I looked a little closer and realized it was a baby duck and every time it tried to walk away he’d grab it and put in under his legs. So I called him and here he comes with this tiny duck in his mouth. So I put it in the pond out back and, lo and behold, the next day the baby duck was following him around. – Lisa Van Fleet, Birdstone Labradors

Something happened to the mother of some kittens and so I took them in. Well Casper, a tough German Shepard, would never leave the kittens and their basket. As they got older the kittens would start running around, and Casper would get distressed and cry and one-by-one would pick them up and put them back in the basket. It got so bad that we had to keep him in another room. – Lisa Van Fleet, Birdstone Labradors

After spending several weeks in one of my classes with her beagle puppy, one student came up to me thanking me for all the things she learned. She just had one question; “Could you tell me the sex of my puppy?” – Heather Mishefske, The Beastro

A lady came in to surrender her dog a while back because they had remodeled their living room and the dog no longer matched the décor. – Eau Claire County Humane Association

Someone adopted a toy poodle and returned it because he decided it was too small. When we asked what he meant by that, he said he likes to have a few beers at night and is afraid of stepping on it. – Eau Claire County Humane Association

We had a goat that was born with a malformity in front legs and walked on its knees. When we’d bring him in the lobby, he loved the rugs. He would hop around like there was a party. – Eau Claire County Humane Association

People have asked for thongs for dogs. – Susan Merten, Petco

We’ve had animals here that have ate three pairs of underwear, a Barbie, Nemo, Cinderella, and a butter knife. – Eau Claire Animal Hospital

    I had a cat that was compulsively eating hair ties. The owner responded with, “So that’s where those have been going!” – Eau Claire Animal Hospital

I always told people that I’ve never lost one, and I never thought I would, until about a year ago. There was a dog that was never separated from its owner and never been to this kennel. Well it went through four of my kennels and escaped. I thought we’d never see the dog again, but he crossed the Red Cedar River and went back home to Downing, about 25 miles away. – Carolyn Shane, Brittany Hills Kennel

I had a bulldog that jumped in the river and lodged a 20-inch stick between his skin and ribcage. When he came in his tail was wagging like nothing happened. – Eau Claire Animal Hospital

We have a tortoise named Leonard that we reported stolen a while back. We tore the store apart for nearly a week looking for him. Well one day I opened up the door to the storeroom and there he was staring back at me. Two or three weeks later he turned up missing again. We waited four or five days before we posted up a sign, but we never called the sheriff. It ended up being that he escaped from our patio, crossed two parking lots, a street, and went two blocks without being seen or killed. So a lady called in to say she found a tortoise living under her deck and eating her buffet of flowers. Let’s just say we keep a closer eye on Leonard now. – Tropic Waters Pet Center

Being an expert in the fine art of poop scooping, I can tell you some strange things that have come out on the dark side, if you know what I mean. I have seen full intact Miracle Whip packets, buttons, barrettes, refrigerator magnets, Q Tips, pennies, thumbtacks, Wal-Mart bags, various parts of stuffed toys, paper clips, pen caps, whole Twizzlers, Lego’s, and watch batteries in dog poop. Maybe my next entrepreneurial venture will be an “Excrement Pawn Shop” to sell all this stuff. Or not. – Heather Mishefske, The Beastro