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Fantasy Land!

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Totally Married Podcast

Episode 146

Elizabeth and Andy discuss fantasies and who the tallest/shortest person they’ve dated was (a riveting discussion 🙂 before diving into listener questions about an illicit crush in the office place, why Elizabeth cares so much about rescuing dogs, and whether or not it’s cool to bounce from a ten year long marriage because you are “bored with marriage”. Enjoy!


Alia says:

That’s so cool about the 13-year-old girl you nannied now being in the position to be a role model/the “cool big kid” for Baby Opes! I love that your influence will impact Teddy both directly and indirectly!

Christina says:

I haven’t listened to all of the episode yet, so sorry if I step on something you’ve yet to say, but I wanted to add another plus about adopting pets.

If you check out your local Humane Society, they usually have pictures up with the cutest dogs, cats and more. The staff can usually tell you a lot about the animal’s personality and temperament, so you can pick out a pet that fits your home. The often have specials on hard to place breeds and traits — like half off green-eyed dogs and cats and discounts on chihuahuas at my shelter now.

And the adoption fee covers spaying or neutering and vaccinations. Plus, a lot of the time, you can get their first vet visit for free too. Shelters have full-breed dogs, cute mixes (there’s a chihuahua/dachshund mix at my local shelter that adorable!) and mixes. All sorts of cats, kittens, puppies and more. I encourage anyone considering buying to at least have a look online at Pet-finder or your local Humane Society or, even better, visit a shelter. You can find the exact same dogs bred by breeders plus lots more. You can even search other cities or states if there’s a particular breed you want that isn’t in your area.

But all that aside, I was actually wondering if A&E still do dog agility training? It’s been awhile since you talked about it. I imagine you’re quite busy these days, but is it still something Ruby enjoys?

Christina says:

Um … just got to the part where you’re tired of the dog talk. Haha. Sorry. 🙂 Love you guys!

Elizabeth says:

Hey Christina! Love this – totally agree about petfinder, it’s so awesome!

And no, sadly, agility has fallen by the wayside but we were just talking about it the other day and hope to get back into it someday when we’ve found our parental footing (does that ever happen? hope so 🙂

Sarah says:

I loves me a rescue pup as much as the next person but your very incorrect statistics need to be challenged.

These numbers come from ASPCA, HS, and PAWS

About 65 percent of pet owners acquire their pets free or at low cost.
The majority of pets are obtained from acquaintances and family members
Twenty-six percent of dogs are purchased from breeders
20 to 30 percent of cats and dogs are adopted from shelters and rescues
2 to 10 percent are purchased from pet shops.
90% of dogs for sale in pet stores are from puppy mills.
Animal shelters care for 6-8 million dogs and cats every year in the United States, of whom approximately 3-4 million are euthanized.
There are 179 million owned cats and dogs in the US

After volunteering for years at an animal shelter I feel that the greatest disservice we do our pets is to not spay and neuter them or not be in a position to give them a forever home. I, personally, find people who adopt a kitten only to ditch it at a shelter 3 years later MUCH more offensive than buying a purebred puppy that they will cherish for 15 years.

More than 20 percent of people who leave dogs in shelters adopted them from a shelter…

Elizabeth says:

Thanks for this! Good info to have, although from other sources the stats on euthanizing are closer to 6 million. Was there another stat I was off on? I don’t believe so…

Sarah says:

When you said “96% of all dogs bought in this country come from puppy mills”- I think you must be taking that from the 90% of dogs sold in pet shops are from puppy mills fact- but what I thought you were implying was that 96% of all dogs that are not from shelters are from puppy mills which I found very misleading.

I kind of marvel at the contrast of our two perspectives; it sounds like you volunteered with a rescue group where as I volunteered for 3 years at a dilapidated County Shelter (walking dogs kept in concrete prisons whose only opportunity to go outside was a volunteer coming in to take them out). My experience left me heartbroken and angry at irresponsible pet owners. I’ve never seen people who buy a pet from a breeder as the enemy- they aren’t the ones unloading a cat or dog at a shelter because they are too lazy to find their pet a home or get their pets spay or neutered. Seriously, nothing makes me more angry than people who take on a kitten because they are cute only to decide they don’t want a cat once it is grown- nothing is more depressing than stacks of adult cats stuck in crates for months waiting for someone to decide they want a cat and not a kitten.

Elizabeth says:

That statistic you are correcting me on, that 96% of dogs bought in this country come from puppy mills – perhaps it is closer to 90% but I meant what I said. I did not say or imply that it’s 90% of dogs not acquired from shelters. I said “bought” meaning in puppy stores, online, or from “breeders” of whom most are not the frolicking in the fields, one litter at a time type of breeders. So I stick to my comment even if it’s off slightly. And since you are splitting hairs (why?) this is a statistic that is impossible to know for certain because what constitutes a “puppy mill” is open to interpretation and isn’t regulated at least not comprehensively… but in my book it is any operation where the breeder dogs are creating puppies as commodities and where there are more than five litters at a time.

Also, I get the impression from your corrections and comments that you feel that my platform is misguided which is frustrating because I’m fighting for the same side as you. That’s one of my main disappointments with the rescue/animal advocate community is that there is so much finger pointing within instead of unity and working together. No need for you to “marvel” at our perspectives because don’t really seem all that different to me. I agree, irresponsible owners and lack of spay neuter is a huge part of the problem. I too am disgusted by someone who brings a dog or cat back to the shelter after the “fun” has worn off or whatever. I’ve talked at length on past podcasts about the scum who bring in an elderly dog to the shelter just to pick out a puppy to take home that same day, I think there is no lower form of humanity.
My point is that if we could convince just 15% of the “responsible” owners who would be going to a breeder to buy their puppy instead to adopt then our shelters would not be euthanizing. I also am very pro spay neuter programs. But my podcast listeners are typically not the people who aren’t spaying and neutering. They are the people who will be excellent pet owners but might choose to buy from a breeder/store/online as opposed to adopt from a shelter so that is my platform.

Deb says:


I understand your comments and where you’re coming from but I don’t understand why you feel the need to argue with Elizabeth over the issue. This problem has many layers and the issue is so out of hand that I think anyone advocating for shelters should be celebrated regardless of their reasons for getting on board. Elizabeth supports responsible ownership as well as spaying and neutering. She’s not saying you automatically should get a badge of honor for adopting regardless of how you treat that animal in the future.. she is just advocating for animal rescue and adoption in general. Yes, the real problem is irresponsible owners but puppy mills and commercial breeders fuel the fire and flood the “market” without educating owners before purchase. For example, if husky breeders informed pet owners that huskies require daily rigorous exercise or they can and will destroy your home then there would be less purebred huskies dumped in shelters (the shelter I volunteered at had 6 at one time) once the owner figures this out on their own. Anyway, this may have gotten off track, I’m just as passionate about it as you both are and that’s why I think we all should be on the same team!

Sarah says:

Just getting to this episode now, but wanted to let you guys know that I got to the last minutes of the podcast and laughed – I am a (former) fencer! I fenced in high school and college, and am considering picking it up again as a hobby. Loved the reference to my relatively unpracticed but totally awesome sport of choice.

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