Our family has never had a pet, other than the inevitable fish that every child has at some point, and you might think that means we don’t like animals, but that is not the case. In fact, the reason that we have never had a dog is because of how much we do love animals. You see, both my husband and I have always worked full-time, and we are often out and about for a good part of the weekend too. So, we thought it would be unfair to have a dog that would end up left alone so much. I think they need companionship just like we do. And as for cats, I am very allergic to them, so that was never really an option. As my children went to babysitters when they were little, I just figured that they could enjoy cats and dogs vicariously through them or through the neighbours. But earlier this year when my son’s girlfriend asked if I would mind if she got Bryan a leopard gecko for his birthday, I thought what the heck! So, let me formally introduce you to Zipper, the newest member of our family (who I also refer to as Zippity, the Zippster or Zippmeister). He is so adorable, and he loves crawling all over us, but he also doesn’t require a great deal of attention. Not that he hasn’t ever presented challenges. I mean, he’s no trouble, it’s his food! Have you ever tried to handle live crickets? What a pain in the butt. And try moving 2 dozen crickets out of a cage in order to clean it and then get them back in without losing them in your house. They are dirty, nasty little buggers. You probably think I’m a wimp, but I’m not really (well not much anyway). I have no problem handling and feeding him the alternative that we finally settled on – mealworms. Yes, they’re wiggly and kind of gross but require barely any care or clean up. You throw them in a container of bran flakes and they are happy. As you can see, Zipper is very photogenic, and one day this summer I took him outside for a “photo shoot”. As is usually the case in our house, my kids thought I was crazy when I lay down in the grass right in front of Zipper and snapped about 100 pictures, but how could I resist? He is cute isn’t he?