Lena and I have two cats we will not be “replacing” when they go, though we will likely always keep a dog in the house. Our dog now, Guinness, is one of the most mellow, loving animals I have ever met. He’s a good-looking guy too, and we are constantly getting greeted by folks in the neighborhood who have come to know us from our dog walks. It’s fun and it brings a sense of belonging and community that transcends merely having a four-legged roommate. Guinness has brought us together not only with him and with each other, but with everyone around us as well.
If you don’t have a dog, maybe you should think about it. Just not these two dogs.