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The pet play lifestyle is full of so many voices that make it unique and vibrant. To showcase this, every month we will be shining the spotlight on a particular human animal or Handler in our community. Let's hear what makes every pet player special! We're kicking off 2023 in style with a pup who has been part of community since the very start. Lovable, welcoming, and with a special love of slime, we're excited to introduce this servive pup, and know you'll love hearing everything they have to say...

PUP ICARUS!


Please introduce yourself, your pronouns, and how you identify in pet play.

Hi y’all!


My name is Icarus, I use they/them pronouns, and I identify mainly as a dog in pet play! I have two main dogsonas, Icarus (unowned/uncollared dog) and Dummy (owned by Pet Garnet). In particular I’m known as Icarus, the Pink Bernese Slime Dog, a mixture of a bernese mountain dog and a slimy creature! You’ll also find me boppin’ along with Pet Garnet as his service dog Dummy (he/him), the big brown dumb mutt!


How did you first get into pet play and discover your headspace?

My first introduction to pet play was partially through having an interest in the furry fandom first, and creating characters to draw and express myself. Eventually I became more interested and able to participate in my local BDSM community due to a reconnection to a friend who was a community leader at the time. Under her protection and guidance we discovered my service oriented personality, lazy cuddly dog energy, kinky driven mind, and soon after was dubbed “Pup” until I could figure out my breed, style, etc.


I took a few years away from all that due to grad school, but after graduation found myself wanting to be back in the BDSM world and more focused on my pupself. I got my first hood and started attending weekly pup bar nights locally and a monthly dance party (Bark Nite), and eventually was able to become a member of the SoCal Creatures community as it grew, too! Being able to grow and develop myself through these different types of pet spaces is really key to discovering my headspace.



Tell us about being a slime dog! What does that kink mean for you?

My second, and current, pup hood is based on my current headspace as the Pink Bernese Slime Dog. As I wanted to grow as an artist, having a character/headspace to focus on and develop my skills also developed the character/dog that is Icarus. My headspace is a big mix of pet play and being a furry, Icarus is essentially a cartoon character at the end of the day. He’s big, pink, and made of slime!


My slime kink means a lot of different things for me. The physical side of it is all sensory and messy play oriented, I’m rather particular about textures of slime and what kind is good for what sensation. The comics and art that comes from slime kink is really key to it as well on the nonphysical side of things, because our world is sadly limited by the laws of physics/slime technology.



What helps you get into your pet headspace?

I’m always a dog tbh, so it does not take much for me to feel near headspace. Not just anyone can tell me a command/dog talk to me, of course, but especially with those who I have grown closer with and those who have natural energy dynamics with me. Pet/dog talk will always make me want to get on all fours and bark! Boof!


At this point getting my hood on and getting down on my paws is often all I need to start getting in the mood! Lately when I go to SCC moshes playing in the ball pit really gets me in my headspace! I love digging at the balls and burying my face all the way to the bottom!



How, if at all, do your intersections of identity influence your pet play?

I’m a fat nonbinary, transgender, queer/polysexual, polyamorous, neurodivergent person. Just being a dog in general can help make social interactions with different intersections easier!


My first hood had transgender flag colors, because I was mainly going into cis-gay events when I started out, and had unfortunately had some negative experiences prior in other cis-gay spaces (non-pup) with being transgender. It helped give me the confidence to tackle those spaces again, along with the support of my best friend Romyn! And after having found friends and other types of pet events, like SCC, I was more able to step away from needing my “gender identity” be a central part of my pet headspace. I was really able to develop Icarus into the character I felt.


Icarus being made out of slime is really important. I have never felt particularly connected to concepts of gender, sexuality, other life definitions and expectations. Slime for me represents being uncontainable, everchanging, and limitless.


As well, being a bernese mountain dog! I’m a fat person, and I wanted to be a big fat dog with similar characteristics to myself. Identifying with a big breed has done wonders for my positive body image, and I love being a big dog! I’m warm! I’m cuddly! I’m strong! And I’m supportive!



How are you influenced by your and others’ play and kinds? What does it mean to you?

Others definitely influence my play! Generally I’m okay on my own, and like looking around at what everyone else is doing. But, I love playing with other pets in lots of different ways too! I can do gentle play like pass the toy around, but I also LOVE rough wrestling with other pets!


Sometimes I’m apprehensive about playing with others due to having low hearing comprehension typically at most pet events with noise/music levels, but am usually always open to it for those who want to approach! I just typically need time out of puphood to talk about what we want to do first if it’s not just general mosh play.


What do you love most about pet play?

Pet play, for me, is an avenue of exploration, meaning-making, and catharsis. Pet play is inspiration. I love that pet play has opened my eyes to the expansiveness of existence, and empowers me in the creation of the present!


We have so many fantastic creatures/pets continuing to be created in the community! We construct scenes, plays, and connections to others that are often beyond words! We make art, gear, appeal, toys, etc. because of how much it means for us and others! We love and give love to each other just by existing as ourselves together in pet play! It’s just great, ya know?



Keep up with this lovable slime dog on Instagram at @pupicarus

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The pet play lifestyle is full of so many voices that make it unique and vibrant. To showcase this, every month we will be shining the spotlight on a particular human animal or Handler in our community. Let's hear what makes every pet player special! This month, we're featuring another one of our most cherished, long-time volunteers. She's often seen doing runs for our supplies, and helping keep our parties clean and well-stocked. Plus, she's simply the cutest and sweetest little corgi around! Introducing...

WILLOW!


Please introduce yourself, your pronouns, and how you identify in pet play.

Hi! I'm Willow, I'm bisexual, polyamarous, transgender, and my pronouns are she/her. In pet play I'm a small corgi, always curious and apt to play with other pups or when encouraged, but more often than not I'm just a lap dog. Very head-empty at all times. Sometimes I'm also a service dog for my partner, Kat, fetching things or doing little tasks for them when they don't want to or can't move around. I don't have a pup name - Willow/puppy/bitch etc. will all get my attention, as will anything else because I'm so easily distracted.


How did you first get into pet play and discover your headspace?

I'd played with collars and leashes in scenes before which led to an interest in pet play, which led me to finding SoCal Creatures. This really opened my eyes to what pets could be and how pet play can be done. Animal role play is fun in concept, but seeing that raw connection in person is magical. I was so inspired and captivated by the varied dynamics and expressions all coming together in this loving, judgment free environment. It's incredibly relieving to let go into a playful space, letting body and mind free to feel comfortable and have fun with zero judgment. Playing more with handler dynamics showed me how much I love letting go of control and responsibility to people who I know and trust will take care of me. Letting go of worry can be extremely difficult for me, but being a pet for someone is an amazingly effective way to quickly clear my mind. And frankly, my handler will often be able to know what's best for me better than I do, which not only warms my little puppy heart but it's also just so helpful and cathartic for someone who struggles with executive function.



What are your favorite treats/rewards?

Usually I'm happy with scritches behind my ears or a very nice "good girl"! Head pats and butt pats are nice rewards for a job well done. I love getting time to be a lap dog and lay on/with someone. I don't often eat actual treats in play, but I tend to like sweeter things like fruit snacks or anything chocolate. On the less sweet side, I love getting stepped on and generally roughed around and abused. Whether that's punishment or reward just depends on the context between me and the person topping me.


What helps you get into your pet headspace?

One of the first things for me to get into headspace is vocalizing - making tiny whines and whimpers and groans. It helps a lot to tap into and merge my physical and emotional states. Other helpful triggers include getting pets, having my collar put on, being told to "come" or just kneeling next to my handler, and simply being around other pets. Depending on my physical comfort that day, a hood can be helpful, too. If I'm feeling overwhelmed, it can be helpful to lay down and curl up and "wake up" in petspace. If I'm encouraged to do a lot of breathing and stretching, I can get into space exactly at the pace that I want.



How, if at all, do your intersections of identity influence your pet play?

Pet play provided a great blank slate for my innermost self. A dog doesn't need a gender to act like a dog. And I get to build my petspace the way that feels best for me. It allowed me to really truly find what I wanted to be, totally free from outside expectations and boundaries.


Pet play allowed me to open up to what felt right for me, and most often in ways that mirrored my own identity and expression. Shy, sweet, curious, nervous, but eager. Truths about myself that I'd hidden for masks that never suited me. No wonder I'd always been the one losing (and not totally minding it) when roughhousing growing up. Pet play helps me reconnect with parts of myself that have been sorely missed.


Apart from gender, I feel that my neurodivergence plays heavily into my pet play. I have ADHD and am self-diagnosed autistic, and growing up a lot of my experience was being told I was smart but not applying myself, that I was too lazy, or quiet, or made weird noises, or whatever else I was supposed to change about myself. Pet play gave me the freedom to totally unmask in a way I hadn't for a very long time. I can just listen to myself and be.


Additionally, there's a lot of catharsis for me personally in being a dumb dog. My intelligence has been put on a pedestal for so long and it's all the more frustrating when my energy or the way my brain works makes me fall short of those lofty expectations. When I get told I'm just a stupid little dog with no thoughts, it encourages me to keep my mind clear and reminds me that I'm loved for exactly who I am. There are some things that I just can't do or need help with that other people have no trouble doing and it's not easy accepting that, but pet play has made it easier for me.



What are some goals you have as a pet for the coming months/year?

As a pet, and also a person, the biggest thing I'm focusing on right now is just making space for loving myself. Pet play has led me to caring for and loving myself deeply for what feels like the first time, and I absolutely will follow that lead. At the moment, that's clearing space for a dog bed so I have a set comfy spot on the ground. It's not always easy to play around in smaller spaces, but little curled up puppy naps are what I need most days.


I want to do my best to connect with this awesome community! Being a socially anxious, somewhat nonverbal dog can make socializing pretty tough, but I'm excited to grow the connections I've made and forge new ones.


I also want to start working on finding a mentor to learn more about being a Pro Submissive/ Pro Switch. It’s something that I think would be really fulfilling and healthier work for me. It would also be lovely to find a more ongoing handler/top for myself, but that's not something I want to force myself towards too much.



What do you love most about pet play?

That it's what you make of it! There are all sorts of creatures and they all have the freedom to play their way. From well-established dynamics to pick-up play, very short or


very long scenes, soft or heavy, sexual or nonsexual, gear or not, it doesn't matter. It's such a malleable kink, and it can intersect fantastically with so many others. I love this mix of options I have to engage in with different play partners, and I love seeing the community making space for that variety of play.



To keep up with Willow, follow her on Instagram @willowxsimone!

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The pet play lifestyle is full of so many voices that make it unique and vibrant. To showcase this, every month we will be shining the spotlight on a particular human animal or Handler in our community. Let's hear what makes every pet player special! This month, we're featuring one of our most cherished, long-time volunteers. You can often find them at the Consent Wristband Station helping newbies, or rolling around the moshes with a big, fluffy cat tail on the back of their wheelchair. A kitten, wolf, Handler for their partner, delightfully spooky, we're excited to introduce...

KAT!


Please introduce yourself and how you identify in pet play.

I’m Kat Kallen, I primarily use They/Them pronouns, I’m Pansexual & Polyamorous, and identify somewhere within Genderfluid/Non-Binary/Agender. I often play as a handler for my partner Willow; but mostly as a pet myself, and usually stay in a kitten or wolf head space as a pet.


How did you first get into pet play and discover your headspaces?

I was always the kid on the playground that played the family pet, rather then be a mom or sibling lol. It was a pretty easy extension once I got older, found the Internet, and eventually attended kink events.



Do you consider yourself a Handler? How is it having a pup while also being a pet yourself?

I don’t really feel like much of a handler, but I do typically take on a lot of responsibilities & try to ensure the safety of other around me. I definitely default to handler mode when I go to parties/moshes. It’s not always easy being a pet, especially since my girlfriend is also a sub-leaning pet, but we make it fun. We love playing with other handlers or dominant types together and/or separately; so don’t be afraid to reach out to either of us ;)


What are your favorite pet play activities?

I love being a little lap cat; getting scritches & being hand-fed treats is THE BEST. If I’m feeling more wolfy I really like wrestling around & showing off my strength by fighting for dominance; then losing, 'cause otherwise what’s the fun if I win?



How, if at all, do your intersections of identity influence your pet play?

I think, because I’m Genderfluid it is kinda hard for me to pinpoint where I am on a spectrum, (or really ANY spectrum) so a lot of the times I play I’m kinda in between head spaces. I generally prefer letting my partner/handler guide where a scene takes us and just giving feedback during to help us both figure it out and have a good time.


What advice might you have for disabled kinksters who are interested in exploring pet play?

Don’t be afraid to use mobility devices at moshes, invest in tools that help you remain more comfy, it’s always something you can incorporate into headspace. Sometimes my wolf space is more of an old watchdog, tired, doesn’t move too much; I’ll just supervise the pups romping around. I have really thick knee pads when I do crawl around to kneel or play, and I always carry a travel pharmacy/braces/bandages in case I need something that’s usually at home. I frequently put my huge cat tail on the back of my wheelchair and roll around the moshes at Threshold.



What do you love most about pet play?

I love the variety and creativity everyone can bring. I’ve met mischievous foxes, shy dragons, brash puppies, faux-stuck up ponies. It’s fun to play up a part of your personality that you don’t get to show often or indulge in. In my case, I love being a pampered pet because I work a lot & take care of others; having a break & be small or have things handled for me is always warmly welcomed.



Want to keep up with Kat? Follow them on Instagram @kat_kallen


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