Furry Friday: The essence of pets

NICK BARNETT
Last updated 09:00 21/02/2014

Which are the best pet photographs? Well, the ones I like most are those that I recognise something in - something true about the cats or dogs (or rabbits, or guinea pigs...) that I've known.

Those are the photos that make me think "Ha, my cat does that," or "Just like my dog," or "That reminds me of..." Somehow, they capture part of the essence of a pet species.

Inevitably, because I'm choosing the pictures, every edition of Furry Friday has some of those kinds of photos, whatever the overall theme. This week, instead of "box" photos or "kitten" photos or "sleepy" photos, I've chosen a lineup of what I think are "true essence" pictures. I hope you agree that, between them, they capture a lot of what makes us love cats and dogs.

Today's cover-cat is Zozo, who's tired of this so-called human entertainment. However, Zozo's not surrendering control...

Zozo

Lewis the Doberman was all set to roll around in the new lambskins in his kennel and imbue them with the essence of Lewis. But Cara got there first. Zoom on the photo, if you can, to grasp the full smugness of Cara's expression. Also note Lewis's avoidance of eye contact - yet you can still tell he's really put out.

Lewis and Cara

Fergus is back-on to us, but I'd guess that he is avoiding eye contact too. Smeetah the cat is having fun but it doesn't look as though there's any room in the game for a dog.

Smeetah and Fergus

Another insight into cat-dog coexistence: Domino and Solo enjoy the sun - just not the same bit. And both of them know that Domino gets to choose first.

Solo and Domino

Molly is lucky to be growing up with a cooperative shagpile friend such as Lulu. 

Lulu and Molly

A bit of carpet, a bit of sun - who needs the Central Otago scenery? The late Ali has the kind of holiday she prefers.

Ali

Ah, a shed-office - perfect for Medix to hang out in. All human constructions are potential beds, after all.

Medix

Never too big for a cuddle: this is Marlee.

Marlee

Everyone needs a dad for a pillow.

Kerry and jack russell

Pull back the blankets, and it's Carli and Harry. (Reminds me of winter with a Dachshund.)

Carli and Harry

There's just enough room on the bench for company - but Misty has the sunny part.

Misty

A classic playful-cat post from Sophie - who, despite the name, is a boy. 

Sophie

Kiva's pigeon-toed trot.

Kiva

A candid view of Fi, focused and graceful.

Fi

Twink went somewhere unadvisable for a white cat, but there's no loss of dignity.

Twink

Louie's high five.

Louie

This is today's favourite for me - Audrey's on a trip somewhere, but the destination is not the joy. She's right in the moment.

Audrey

Happy can look a lot like crazy, when you're a Mastiff. This is Neo, caught in a gallop.

Neo

With dogs, one minute they're lolloping around, then suddenly they're regal, strong and dignified. Meet Kobi and Izzy.

Kobi and Izzy

Katie has mastered carrot-eating technique.

Katie

Tuka looks so cool in that bowl. I wonder if she first had a go at getting into the bucket...

Tuka

Miranda Purr tries to disentangle.

Miranda Purr

Sammy is determined to find the end of the bag that opens.

Sammy

It's Tuka again, testing out the cupboard.

Tuka 2

It's Miranda Purr again, making sure she's close to the centre of attention.

Miranda Purr 2

Greville is talkative.

Greville

Interested, optimistic, just managing to stay patient: this is Shutz.

Shutz

Soulful, loyal: this is Megan, well loved at 15 years old. Her owners built her a step to get into the car and one to get on their bed. They chopped up her food for her, rubbed cream into her dry ears and took her with them to the shops every day to get a piece of luncheon sausage. They took her on her final journey in December.

Megan

Finally, Carmel. She's going strong, if a little more slowly than before. She's 20 years old.

Carmel

Thanks to all for posting your photos. Please email me your own photos, or go to the Four Legs Good Facebook page and use the Upload Photo button. While you're there, browse through the 3000 photos that readers have posted by clicking the Photos link.

Follow Nick Barnett on Twitter.

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