After years of dreaming of a time when my kids would sleep through the night, I'm still longing for an unbroken sleep.
You see, these days, it's not the pitter patter of little feet that wake me in the wee hours of the morning. It's the pitter patter of tiny paws. Or more correctly, the thump of a furry body against my door, as Hannah Kitteh throws herself at the screen door in her valiant efforts to wake me.
She used to be an indoor cat, but since moving to the country, she likes to explore at night. For as long as it suits her, thank you very much.
When she's had enough, she then makes her way to the door to my patio, and thumps against it until I wake up.
Oh, I've pretended I can't hear her. I ignore her. Pull the doona over my head. Count to ten and tell her to go away.
But she then climbs the screen door repeatedly, or leaps up to my window above the bed. And so I give in.
I get up, usually banging my knee on the dressing table, swear, let the bloody cat in, and go back to bed.
Lucy dog will leap up to joyously welcome the arrival of the Prodigal Cat, and the pair will race around the bedroom for a few minutes.
Then Hannah will leap onto my bed, purr at me reproachfully and wait for a scratch, which I dutifully give, thereby rewarding her for her naughty behaviour. She then settles down on top of me. The dog lies down on another part of me.
We all get comfortable and fall asleep.
And then I'm woken by the jiggling of my bedroom door, the one that leads into the rest of the house.
Hannah Kitteh has decided she wants to move further afield and is trying to open the door. I get up muttering darkly, and let her out.
My head only seems to hit the pillow, and there's another lot of thumping. Hannah is back, this time wanting to come back in.
And so it continues throughout the night.
Sometimes Kit Kat will join us, coming home from a successful night's hunting with a gift of a dead mouse or rat for me, all the better to meow at my door until I get up and thank him for it.
Sometimes, Lucy will wake me to go outside to the toilet.
I complain at times, and occasionally threaten to give the pets away, but we all know that's never going to happen. The fur babies have me well and truly wrapped around their tiny paws. I'm possibly the worst offender when it comes to pampering them.
And so it was that I was thrilled to be given the chance to review a state of the art piece of luxurious pet furniture recently.
Imported to Australia by d & c Lifestyle, the Hepper Pod is a stylish bed made for cats and small dogs. The off-the-floor design and cosy cave-like pod, gives small animals a sense of security and the feeling of being on a mountain, giving them the best sleep ever! There's a washable lining too.
Both Hannah and Kit Kat shunned the pod - Hannah is interested but is a very wary cat despite her night-time shenannigans, and is still getting used to the idea of something new. Kit Kat is just a little too chubby I think.
But Lucy, our pampered Chihuahua-Pomeranian cross, adores the pod. She not only naps in it, she sits in it, stores her toys in it, and climbs in it to eat her chewie snacks and pig snouts. (Thank goodness for the washable liner!)
Unlike most pet furniture, the Hepper Pod is a pretty cool addition to our lounge too, and has been a talking point for every visitor to our home. Quite a few pet-loving visitors are thinking of getting their own.
At $199 its not cheap, but few pet products are these days. And to have a comfy piece of furniture that your pet will actually use is priceless.
There are other cool products on the website too, including a Cat Condo Deluxe. This is like a mini apartment just for cats. Designed for apartment dwellers and/or those with limited space for scratching posts, kitty litter, and feeding bowls, the easily movable condo has indoor stairs and separate areas for eating, scratching, exercise, toileting, and an elevated sleeping area.
If you've always hated changed the kitty litter - and who likes it, let's be honest- their Modkat litter box has rooftop access for privacy, and eliminates mess.
I love that the Modkat also stops other pets and children from accessing the 'treats' inside!
The Modkat litter box - pretty cool, right? Comes in several colours too.
(And yes, I never thought I'd put a photo of kitty litter on my blog either).
The Hepper Hi-Lo scratcher - stylish and perfectly arched for optimal cat-scratching!
And this is the Hepper Pod Pet Bed we trialled:
Lucy's in the house
She prefers the top off
Where's my chewie treat?
Readers, do you pamper your pets?