Oh, I have reminded others of the "well, it's just a dog/cat" thing, too. And all I got was that "dogs and cats have better ability to show their emotions, therefore you can tell if they're sad or whatever. I can't tell if a fish is in pain or not, so I don't care"
It was a heartless thing to say. I love all of my pets [we have about 7-8 cats and a dog back home- Admiral Finns stays with me at college] equally, it just really makes me angry to hear things like that. It's sad that people can't really understand how we feel until they have one of their own.