They say a dog is a man’s best friend. Well, I have two things to say to that.
Firstly, I’m a woman, and secondly, I’m downright scared of dogs.
Puppies, pooches, whatever you want to call them – petrified is the only word that springs to my mind.
But I recently watched The Secret Life Of Pets 2, and all it took was 90 minutes of furry friends displaying compassion, loyalty and so much heartfelt emotion to make me begin to believe pets aren’t so bad after all.
They have feelings, they care about their owners and they’re actually really clever at getting what they want (ahem, puppy dog eyes).
When I sat down with two of the film’s lead stars, Kevin Hart and Tiffany Haddish, I was proud of this first step I’d taken towards loving pets: acknowledging they’re actually okay after all.
Kevin, who plays devious-turned-determined to save the day bunny, Snowball, was quick to give me some advice based on my recent learnings.
“I’m going to give you a piece of advice,” the 39-year-old A-lister told me.
“You say you’re afraid of animals and you see a movie and think, ‘Oh my god these animals are so loveable, this makes me want an animal’.
“What I want you to understand is that that’s a movie. It’s not real life. Okay?”
My bubble’s burst and I realise I should’ve always trusted my instinct. Don’t even think about getting a goldfish, Alicia.
Turns out Hart is just as terrified of pets as I am.
“You’ve got your animal and you go to sleep and that animal bites you in the damn throat, you hear me?” he continues.
“Because that’s what they do. They attack you at nighttime.
“You’ll get a cat, you know what that cat gonna do? It’s going to take the air out of your mouth when you sleep. They’re sneaky animals, okay? They’re very sneaky animals!”
At this point his co-star Haddish chimes in: “They don’t take the air out of your mouth. They sit on your chest”.
But there’s no stopping Hart by this point.
“A cat will try to kill you... I suggest you stay by yourself.
“Okay, don’t get no peacock, don’t get no guinea pig, don’t you get out here and get you one of those kangaroos.
“I saw that kangaroo, you know they’re giving those kangaroos steroids out here in Australia,” he jokes.
“I’m just being honest with you, so you know what not to do,” he concludes.
But here’s the thing, Hart does have a pet after all.
“I only like my dog,” he explains. “I don’t like nobody else’s pets. I don’t deal with other animals. I’m like you. I only like my dog. I don’t mess with animals at all.”
By this point it’s time to wrap up our chat and he leaves me with some final words: “Good luck to you. I hope you survive”.
While I may refrain from getting a pet any time soon – sorry for the incredibly misleading headline at the start of this article – I actually stopped by a pet shop window the other day, and that could be the start of something.
The Secret Life Of Pets 2 is in Australian cinemas June 20, however you can catch a sneak peek this long weekend.
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