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People told me that when I had children, my love for my favorite people and things in my life wouldn’t diminish. It would simply expand. For my two children and my husband, this is true. For my dogs, however, this is definitively not true. Whereas I once used to brush and pat and walk and treat my dogs constantly, I now like to act as though they don’t exist. My kids love them, and I guess that deep down I do, too. But it’s just that, well, I have kids now, and my pets just feel like annoying, hairy, expensive kids. Another chore, so to speak. My one dog, Sadie, in particular, is just so high maintenance. I understand that, as an Australian Shepherd, she would only be truly happy on a sheep farm or some such open-fielded environment. It’s all I can do to muster the energy (and time management) to get her out for a walk around the neighborhood once a day. Therefore, the rest of the time, she whines. And our lab, Cooper, follows our children around incessantly, with a thick, nasty string of drool oozing out of his mouth the entire time in the hopes that an errant snack will drop out of tiny hands and onto the floor. Actually, he kind of comes in handy now, with all the food throwing at meal times we have going on. But Sadie and the whining? Well, I have thought of this happening not just one time, sadly: