Image courtesy of Kari Breen Pet Photography & Sundance Square

Sad story: I never had a pet growing up. I badly wanted one, a big, fluffy German Shepherd to be exact, but since my family lived in a glorified rowhouse two inches from a buzzing thoroughfare, my parents were like nah — they’d seen too many other pets on our street get mowed down on Liberty Avenue and didn’t want my siblings and me to endure that kind of trauma.

Now, I’m happy to report that those days are gone! Well, no shit. I’m 52. But still. I’m now an official pet owner, and our year-old mini Australian Shepherd has brought my wife, young son, and me so much joy that we’ve all blown out the memory cards on our phones and tablets with pictures of her because she’s the cutest thing ever.

Is having a fur baby the same as raising a child? Not quite, but along with being similarly challenging (trying to teach our little one to bark only in danger and come when called), it’s hella fun. Baby grrrl plays harder than the ’87 Lakers on a coke-and-Crown bender.


In celebration of National Dog Month (August), we Weeklyteers thought we’d take an accounting of all the animals in our lives and around us, so welcome to our second annual Creature Comforts issue. Inside, you’ll find everything from a tragic story on animal trafficking in North Texas to a shopper’s guide for our four-legged pals, a preview of the Fort Worth Zoo’s blockbuster big-cat exhibit, and a fun ditty about a compilation album benefiting the Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation.

We hope you enjoy reading this issue as much as we did writing it. And remember, when you’re done, you can use it to line your birdcage. — Anthony Mariani, Comet’s Dad, Editor

The Fort Worth Zoo’s blockbuster Predators exhibit is part of a larger, bolder expansion effort. Read about it in On The Prowl in Creature Comforts 2023.