Websites for Pet Lovers: Pet-celebrating blogs and sites
Share pet diaries, join online communities, network socially, and more
There's a plethora of pet-celebrating blogs and websites out there, far too many to highlight in this article.
But here's a reckoning of some of the more fascinating ones.
Fancy meeting you here
Dogster.com and Catster.com (patterned after friendster.com) allow you to create webpages for your pets, post pictures, write pet bios, keep pet diaries and join online communities. These are easily the two most popular pet-oriented social networking sites, but there are others trying to muscle in on dogster's and catster's action. There's the hilariously yet inevitably named Hamsterster.com and the equally self-explanatory birdboard.com. At aquaria.info, you can find self-described Fish Geeks: people who posts pics of their fish and fish tanks and interact aquatically in blogs.
There's also fuzzter.com, pawspot.com, petster.com, petpop.com, petentials.com, and mypetfriends.biz. Options are slightly different at each. Some, like pawspot.com and petpop.com, facilitate pet playdates and pet sitting exchanges among users. Pawspot.com gives the pet and pet owner equal face time: pet owners post pics of themselves along with pics of their pets. As pet-oriented social networking sites go, petcrash.com is focused more on the pet owner than the pet.
I'm in ur cute pet blogs, getting on ur nerves
As a pet lover who often uses the Web to express his pet devotion, you have to decide where you stand on the whole Lolcat phenomenon, if you haven't decided already. In the beginning, Lolcat meant combining funny cat pictures with odd captions written in purposefully ungrammatical English, sometimes referred to as Kitty Pigeon or Lolspeak. The conceit here, presumably, is that if cats could talk, they would use a sort of baby talk and if they could write, they would spell a lot of words wrong.
The home of Lolcat humor is icanhascheezburger.com.
Of course, this unusual hobby has since extended far beyond felines.
It is rare these days to find a web site devoted to posting as many cute animal photos as possible that doesn't have a purposeful or serendipitous Lolspeak component, including ihasahotdog.com, cuteoverload.com, and blogs.discovery.com/dailycuddle.
If you are just an animal lover in general, ZooBorns is the most adorable collection of baby animal photos on the web. Along with adorable photos of your favorite animals, ZooBorns has two books available for purchase. The proceeds help benefit the Association of Zoos and Animals.
There are people who can't get enough of the Lolcat trend and people can't stand it, but either group can appreciate the sensible satire evinced by the fourth photo on this page, zeneece.blogspot.com/2007/12/lolcat-stopd-by
What's in a name? Plenty
If you want to name your new cat, dog, fish or ferret after a fictional cat, dog, fish or ferret from TV or the movies, go to citizenlunchbox.com/famous/animals for lists of mammalian or aquatic characters and where they appeared.
If you want to recall dog names from books as well as from the big screen and the boob tube, go to lowchensaustralia.com/names/dognames.
At bowwow.com, you can find out the etymology of your pet's name, get ingenious suggestions for naming two new pets in a thematically connected way and you can use the site's pet age calculator.
My dog's cuter than your dog and I have the user clicks to prove it
Patterned after such human-objectifying sites as whoishotter.com, kittenwar.com and petduel.com allow a web-surfing person to decide which of two photos depicts the cutest pet. Coldly comparing humans based on physical attractiveness can offend those same humans, so sites like kittenwar.com and petduel.com seem more harmless. Then again, some pet owners have been known to get pretty defensive about the cuteness of their pet.
You can keep abreast of the semi-famous pets of super-famous people at celebritydogblog.com.
Grieving pet owners
The bewildering number of websites and blogs out there that cater to pet lovers of all makes, models, penchants and predilections is not likely to get less bewildering anytime soon.
This news is probably more rewarding than bewildering for some pet lovers, and if you are one of them, enjoy!
Steve Penhollow writes about pets and family issues for Care.com.
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