We didn't have a pet until about a month ago. (I didn't want one until all my children were out of diapers and reliably sleeping through the night). My daughter who just turned 11 wanted a rat for her birthday. She did a lot of research to come up with that idea. It turns out that rats get sick and depressed and can die young if they don't have at least one other rat to live with (kind of makes me worry even more about those of you who are housebound and alone). Anyway, long story short we ended up getting two pet rats from PetSmart. They are so much fun. One is my daughter's (snuffles), and one is mine (monkey). But they really "belong" to the whole family as we all help play with them, train them, and take care of them. I find that the time I spend playing with my new rat baby is some of the calmest, happiest, most pain free time of the day. It is so much fun to laugh so hard my stomach hurts, or hear my kids laugh so hard (rats are quite curious and get themselves into the weirdest situations). What kind of pet do you have? Does it help you with you pain and fatigue?