How To

How To: Friend That Fur Baby

20 February 2017

Most of us, at some stage or another, are guilty of being desperate for a pet’s attention. Whether that be your best friend’s fluffy feline or a stranger’s pooch you see whilst strolling down the street, there is a strong satisfaction gained from patting a furry friend and having them reciprocating your affection. As a uni student, an animal’s affection is often hard to come by. Whether pets are prohibited in your rental agreement or you’re just not ready for that long term commitment, you are not alone in feeling the dull heartache of missing a furry friend’s attention. Getting flustered by every cute critter you come across in your wanders is a situation many of us know all too well, so here are some tips and tricks to make sure you take every opportunity you can to fill that hole in your life with fur babies.

Frequent the Local Hang Outs

Being in the right place at the right time, whether that be markets, cafés or parks, in order to run into pets is something that needs to be carefully planned out and researched. Knowing that on a sunny Saturday morning, you will be inundated with dogs at the Queen Victoria Markets, or that there are various kitties who take afternoon naps on the footpaths of Faraday Street takes careful observation and experience. One of the best places to start is your local dog park. Do a walk by at various times of the day to average a peak time and day of the week to coincidently spend sitting in a shady corner of the park. Bring a nice rug to sit on, a good book to pass the time, and prepare yourself for ultimate pats. Sitting near the entrance of the park will further ensure an almost constant flow of canine attention as will bringing a frisbee or tennis ball, making them come to you! It is suggested to bring a friend if for this activity however, as throwing a frisbee by yourself could look a tad suspicious.

Utilise Technology

Technology has infiltrated almost every single aspect of our lives, it is therefore only natural to utilise this technology to attract the attention of our desired pets. There is an array of apps available which can be used to attract the attention of animals near and far. A personal favourite is Dog Whistle ( available from the app store. This allows you to produce your own dog whistle via your phone by selecting the frequency, tone and sound level of the whistle which is then omitted as a high frequency sound that supposedly works pied piper style to attract dogs in your local area. Whipping out this fun little gadget in your local neighbourhood, park or even friend’s house is a sure-fire way to win the affection of your local pooches. Another example is Purrfect Cat ( which helps you identify different cat breeds by selecting visual characteristics, allowing for you to quickly identify the breed of cat you come across in your travels. You can then do a quick internet search of the kitty’s breed to determine the breed’s likes and dislikes to maximise patting chances.

Edible Attraction

If you have ever seen Desperate Housewives, you may remember the scene where Susan lathers her body in gravy to attract the attention of her love interest’s dog Bongo, who previously showed no interest in friending her. Take a leaf out of Susan’ book and use food to attract the attention of a pet, though maybe not in such an extreme manner (though if this technique sounds like your thing please go ahead!) A more realistic suggestion would be to bring some leftover meats from your house or pick up some takeaway food and bring it within an animal’s vicinity in order to attract their love and affection. Products with a high success rate that have been tried and tested include fried chicken and caribou. Covering yourself in catnip also has similar effects. 

Select Your Friends Based on their Furry Companions

When choosing who your surround yourself with, carefully consider the person’s access to animals. Exploiting friendships for animal attention is something that may be considered frowned upon, but desperate times call for desperate measures. If you hear a friend raving about their new golden retriever puppy, or catch a glimpse of a fellow tutorial member’s computer background of them and their ragdoll kitty, break the ice and suggest you hang out at their place this weekend. Put on a movie, even have a Netflix and chill session, and cuddle up with their pet and prepare for an ultimate patting session.

Now that you are fully prepared to attract other people’s pets into your life, it is important to remember that the pet probably wants to be patted as much as you want to pat it. Armed with tennis balls, fast food and convenient apps, you are now ready to take on your local pet hangouts or conveniently visit old friends. Happy patting!

*No animals were harmed in the writing of this article

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