Shakers andPets


Although the simple life is certainly a draw in this hectic over-scheduled modern life, I would find living as a Shaker difficult, if not impossible. For one thing, I am not obedient. But also the shakers do not have pets.

The Milennial Laws of 1821 and then again in 1845 laid out rules governing every aspect of Shaker lives. They were not allowed pets, primarily because their focus was supposed to be upon God.

For me, this is a deal breaker. I have had a dog since I was ten, with only a few years here and there without. Plus a few cats scattered among the dogs.


Shelby is my current dog, although she actually, emotionally, belongs to my husband. I wanted a dog for my birthday. When we went to the rescue, she raced to him. Once she’d chosen him, we couldn’t leave her behind. So, I got a dog for my husband for my birthday.

But I digress. Sandy was my previous dog. She looked similar to Shelby – a little lighter in color. Sandy was my best friend. She went everywhere with me. Although a medium dog (65 pounds) she lived to be 17 1/2. The vet was astonished she lived so long. by then she was blind, deaf, and had hip displasia. I was so heart broken I did not get another dog for a few years.

So, having a dog is one thing I could not surrender.