Devin’s Tails: Trading Places

By Devin O’Branagan

My famous fictional canine character, Australian Shepherd Talisman, has a history of trading places. In Show Dog Sings the Blues she is mistaken for her sister, Maddie, who is a working cowdog. Talisman, a prissy pampered show dog, faces mighty challenges during her day on the ranch. Then, in my novel, Red Hot Liberty, Talisman must go undercover to help her person, Molly O’Malley, accomplish her new mission as a rebel patriot leader. Talisman and Maddie trade places again to help Molly’s rebellion against the nefarious Men in Black.

Animals trading places with each other provides a humorous fictional hook, but what about animals and people trading places? I asked my Facebook friends if they could trade places with any of their furbabies, which one would it be and why? These were some of their replies:

Tammy E. A. Crosby said, “Would have been my cat Chester but any cat really. Sleep, eat … terrorize people … AWESOME.”

Shaniya showing off her sassy attitude!

Shaniya showing off that sassy attitude!

Paula Kardum-Booth: “I think my dog Shaniya! Not only is she beautiful but has a sassy, funny attitude.”

Gail Baake: “My Siamese Sabrina, cuz she is sooo pampered! She is such a sweet/loving soul, you can’t resist her!”

Lucy Castellon Goffan would like to be her beautiful cat, Abby, because she is loving, independent, and a hunter. “She has all the skills to survive.”

Chris Maximilian wants to be his cat, Rebel, named in honor of Chris’s favorite movie, Rebel Without a Cause. “Rebel gets away with all his naughty behavior due to his charm, good looks, and the timeless appeal of bad boys.”

Katie Murphy said, “I’d trade with Gertie, my Boston Terrier. She just does her own thing regardless of what the other two dogs do. She’s definitely secure in her own skin—how many of us can say the same thing?”

Debbe Montgomery would also like to trade places with her Boston Terrier: “My most wonderful friend … my Ozzy. He spent his first three years in a cage, owned by an animal hoarder. Yet he has so much love and compassion, and he licks my tears. He has taught me a lot.”

Kimberley Pearson would like to trade with her chinchilla, “Stinky because he’s insane and oblivious to the way the world really is!”

Ty VonWernitz : “My dog cuz I like belly rubs!”

Aileen Walden said, “It would be Kiki. She started out as a community cat, picked her human, wormed her way into his life, and hooked him. Didn’t let anyone keep her in until the day she decided all by herself that beds, pillows, toys and laps were the best thing ever. She is the littlest member of the household and pushes everyone else around and we are all utterly smitten with her. She is absolutely and completely her own, fabulous woman with a grand sense of style and self-confidence.”

Joanne Picardi O’Brien: “My dog, Kat, because she’s full of potential and her whole life is before her.”

Mariadel C. Ruiz: “My cat Sabrina, so I wouldn’t have a care in the world.”

Paula McGerr:  “My cat Cash. I really want to know what he’s thinking; he’s the oddest cat I’ve ever had and I love him dearly for it.”

Chris Lawson Svensson would like to be her cat: “Sookie, because she is cute, adorable and perfect!! And she can take on the big boy here in the house and win!”

Deborah Davidson Harpur would like to trade with her agility rock star Rat Terrier, Rickie Roo, because every day for her is an adventure.

Renae Kelly: “Hard to say. All three of my dogs have a pretty good life. Perhaps Tyson because I saved him from certain death but he made it to me and now has a life of leisure. Herja and Oonagh get to train and compete in agility. They get to see a message therapist and chiropractor on a regular basis. They all have a better life than most people!”

Lauren Resetar Vucinich: “Either one of my feline grandchildren just to get inside their heads to know ‘why’!!

ShanAnne Edwards: “My new puppy Mercedes—she really has it good—she got scolded once in her short life last week and looked so hurt I caved in!”

Milo really does enjoy his sleep.

Milo really does enjoy his sleep.

Normandy Higginbotham Hood: “My Bengal mix Milo. He’s very laid back, sweet, and sleeps a lot.”

Rena Mortenson: “Probably Sergeant, because he’s confident, loving and loved, and he thinks the world is the bomb. He NEVER lets life get him down! He’s the normal I’ll NEVER be and he is also gorgeous to look at. My precious brown thing!!”

Personally, I would have wanted to change places with my Australian Shepherd, Jazz. She was able to experience joy, no matter what her personal challenges. Having her in my life was a powerful learning experience. There is so much we can learn from our furbabies. We are so blessed to have them in our lives.

Photo of Shaniya courtesy of Paula Kardum-Booth.

Photo of Milo courtesy of Normandy Higginbotham Hood.

Copyright © 2014 – Devin O’Branagan – All Rights Reserved

Devin O’Branagan is a bestselling author who writes novels about uncommon heroes. Her genres include fiction about dogs and cats, comic romance, paranormal romance, and paranormal thrillers. She is a member of the Dog Writers Association of America, the Cat Writers’ Association, and many of her writing projects support animal rescue. Her books have been published by Simon & Schuster’s Pocket Books in English, Heyne Verlag in German, and Dogan Egmont in Turkish. They may be found in print, eBook, and audio formats. Visit her website at DevinWrites.com, and check her out on Facebook and Twitter.

More from Devin O’Branagan:

Devin’s Tails: Pets and Their Bucket Lists

Devin’s Tails: Dog Days of Summer

Devin’s Tails: A Dog, Courage, and Spiritual Faith


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