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Melinda’s Brew: Here Tooka Tooka!

Melinda’s Brew: Here Tooka Tooka!

I’m going to let you in on a secret — on Saturday mornings, my husband Tom dons some clothes over his pajamas, gets in his car to drive to the nearby bakery, and comes home with a small tray of donuts for us to enjoy with our morning coffee. While we “dine” on our morning fare, we tune in to our Saturday morning television fare — westerns. It is something we have enjoyed doing since early on in our marriage. (We recently celebrated 34 years of wedded bliss … just to give you a taste of how long we’ve indulged in this, er, pastime. 😉 ) By the way, Tom strips out of his “outside” clothes upon his return home to relax as we watch old-time favorites like “The Rifleman” and “Cheyenne”.

This past weekend, I slept in a little later than usual, rolling out of bed around 8 a.m. I finally shuffled down to our Star Wars Room, and found the morning’s array of westerns had concluded early! We had to alter course, and opted for whatever happened to be on Animal Planet. We’re both animal lovers, and enjoy watching the documentary-like series on the cable network. Sometimes we’re treated to a show depicting the crazy, silly antics of pets. Sometimes they’re more serious and educational in nature.

As I watched a couple of the morning’s offerings, and sitting in a room where we are surrounded by Star Wars, I got to thinking about the creatures in the Saga, and how we really don’t see anyone with a pet. About the closest we get to seeing anyone interact with any sense of affection toward a creature is when Malakili, the rancor handler, breaks down in tears after Luke causes the death of the ferocious creature bent on making my favorite character its next meal (ROTJ). I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t consider a rancor pet material (although I am sure Malakili would argue otherwise).

As my mind continued to wander, I wondered what Star Wars creatures might make a good house pet. A nexu? Feline (sort of) in looks, yes, but those razor-sharp claws and honed teeth put it out of contention in my book. Besides, full-grown, do you really think you’d be able to snuggle up with a nexu? Our cats always were notorious for plopping their bodies atop our bodies. Can you imagine a nexu doing that — and you being able to survive such “affection”? You might be able to domesticate an eopie, but they’re a bit too stubborn and grumpy to want to make it a pet. I know Jabba the Hutt keeps a Kowakian monkey nearby, and the monkey-lizard plays the part of both pet and court jester. I’m not sure for how long I would be able to put up with that shrill laugh that peels out of its beak-like mouth.

However, there must be some creatures in the galaxy far, far away that must make good pets. Which fall into that category (even remotely)? Let the search begin!

A bantha’s size alone would keep it from being a contender for one’s house pet. Still, there is something appealing about this lumbering beast. It is said that the Tusken Raiders, who tamed banthas more than any other dweller on Tatooine, developed an almost mystical bond with the huge creatures. However, can you imagine keeping them fed? And imagine how long it would take to keep the long-haired beasts groomed? Still … 😉 Dwarf banthas eventually were bred, and word on the Naboo street is that they make rather good pets. One of the planet’s esteemed citizens, Ebenn Q3 Baobab, is reported to have had one of the miniature monsters as his pet. The mini bantha was named Nuke.

If I had the land to sustain it, I wouldn’t mind having a varactyl, like Boga, as a pet (much like many of us see a horse). Also known as dragonmounts, these reptavian herbivores are extremely fast, can climb, and are incredibly intelligent. Too, they are brave and fearless. Obi-Wan’s mount did not hesitate for even a second when the Jedi Master steered the creature over the edge in pursuit of General Grievous! (As an aside, this maneuver reminds me so much of a scene in “The Man From Snowy River” when Jim and his mountain pony descend a treacherously steep mountain decline as every other horseman stops at the peak’s edge. Jim and his horse are poetry in motion — much like Obi-Wan and his varactyl are in ROTS.) The females, in particular, are gorgeous creatures. They sport iridescent blue-green plumage and skin while the males’ coloring is more muted browns and oranges. If I lived on Utapau, I certainly would want a varactyl of my own. 🙂

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With those two large eyes situated on either side of its head, that long snout and round body, it seems as if the puffer pig certainly would keep its owner in good humor. What’s not to love about that innocent visage? Can’t you just imagine finding the critter at your side while you’re trying to eat, and that look on its face imploring you to feed it some table scraps? 😉 However, the small-ish puffer pig can balloon to three times its size when it gets frightened. If you’re light-footed while moving around your house, you might want to make a bit of noise when approaching a puffer pig just to keep from startling it. 😉

Word has it that the nuna, a flightless, almost bird-like creature native to Naboo, makes a good pet. However, I don’t know if I’d want to make a pet of a critter that makes for a tasty meal. A nuna’s meat is highly appreciated all over the galaxy. Too, nunas are prey to the stealthier critters that get my thumb’s up for the best pet. How could I possibly keep a nuna knowing one of my other pets might make a meal of it at some point?

What gets my vote for the creature that would make the best pet in the galaxy? None other than the tooka (right) or its relative from Lothal, the Loth-cat (left). Tookas are found throughout the Star Wars galaxy, and are adored as fuzzy pets. What isn’t there to adore about these loveable animals? They can be trained, are affectionate and effective hunters. In fact, many a freighter captain will have at least one tooka aboard ship to hunt for vermin that infests even the best-kept hold. Tookas, also known as “Adoris felines”, are mostly violet, greenish blue and yellow. Their Lotal relatives tend to be more “earthen”-colored to blend into the landscape. It helps as they stalk their prey. Sadly, tookas have gotten a bad rap over the years. They are reviled on some planets since many pets either have been lost or thrown out of their cozy homes to survive in the “wilds” of urban areas. They have become more feral in such situations, and their numbers have multiplied, causing some municipalities to take drastic measures to control their populations. (A little piece of trivia: tookas were named after Dave Filoni’s former cat, Tuuk.)

There you have it — some of the galaxy’s more tamable, easily-domesticated critters that could — and do — make good pets. Did I leave your favorite Star Wars creature out of the list? Feel free to let me know in one of the comment boxes below. I’d love to hear from you. 🙂 Remember, inviting a pet into one’s home is not a decision to be made lightly, even in a galaxy far, far away. However, when one decides to do just that, the rewards — for both animal and sentient — are bountiful. 🙂

Thanks for stopping by! 🙂

Sixty-four days and counting …

MTFBWY 🙂

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5 Comments

  1. Joe2
    October 15, 2015 at 14:01 Reply

    I don’t remember how much you were into the former EU, but Han and Leia’s grand daughter Allanna had a pet Nexu that was adopted at a young age and was able to be trained well, but that’s really the only example of a pet that I can remember.

    1. Melinda
      October 15, 2015 at 17:38 Reply

      I LOVE the EU, Joe! 😀 Yes, I remember Allana convincing her grandparents to let her adopt and raise a nexu. I’d venture to say that, when raised from an early age with lots of love, affection and attention, even a nexu could be raised to be a purr-fect pet. I bet, however, Han and Leia wondered what they’d do with the animal once it was full-grown. No kitty carrier for that creature! 😉

      MTFBWY 🙂

  2. Troy M.
    October 15, 2015 at 14:50 Reply

    I’ll have to throw in the massiff, the choice of Tusken Raiders on Tatooine and the Geonosian powerful.

    1. Melinda
      October 15, 2015 at 17:45 Reply

      A fine choice, Troy. A fine choice. They’re a bit too intimidating-looking for my liking, however. Can you tell I lean more toward the cute and cuddly? 😉 In addition, not that a varactyl falls into the cuddly category, I think it would be wonderful to have one of the incredible steeds in my paddock. 🙂

      MTFBWY 🙂

  3. Pam Bruchwalski
    October 15, 2015 at 22:43 Reply

    Surely Owen and Beru had some non-electronic pets hanging out on that moisture farm? What kind of a farm boy doesn’t have pets??

    The Boga is the first and only creature that really came to mind for me immediately. Interesting blog…not a subject I ever really thought much about!

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