Virgo Season Is For the Pet Parents Who Never Forget to Bring Poop Bags
And always remember to scoop out the litter box.
Your pet wants you to read our newsletter. (Then give them a treat.)
The sign of the virgin arrives in late summer — we’re still sweating, but now it’s about the small stuff. Virgo is the editor of the zodiac (think of your most grammatically devoted friends): the critic, the analyst, the healer, and the caretaker. Governing the sixth house, which is the realm of daily work, service, health, and pets, Virgos have a love of creatures great and small. Here, we meet the meticulous, detail-oriented, and devoted pet parent in all their glory. These are the list makers who won’t forget all the little things pets need for a trip.
In the early agrarian societies where astrology emerged, Virgo was the harvest maiden, Goddess of the Wheat — a symbol of both earthy fertility and purity. This time of year was associated with the hard work of harvesting and sorting crops, of toiling in the fields alongside the animals. These pastoral roots explain why Virgo is at peace when in the company of animals and connected to nature. It is also the root of Virgo’s discriminating nature and capacity for hard work. Personified by the Vestal Virgin, which does not imply chastity but rather a woman who is beholden to herself, Virgo is the sign of sovereignty.
Virgo celebrities are multidisciplinary workhorses, often those with a deep connection to refining their craft or a timeless oeuvre that remains relevant — and they also tend to have an unconventional relationship with their pet companions. As the sign most associated with the cornucopia of the animal kingdom, here we encounter Michael Jackson's menagerie of exotic animals, the pride of ten cats taken in by both Freddie Mercury and Amy Winehouse, and Beyoncé’s childhood snake. With an emphasis on privacy and a hyper awareness of maintaining one’s dignity and self-definition in the public eye, perhaps it is in their relationships with animals that these Virgos find true acceptance and unconditional love.
As with all mutable signs (including Sagittarius, Gemini, and Pisces), Virgo has a dual nature and is flexible and adaptable. As the earthy domain of the cerebral planet Mercury, in Virgo, the mind is oriented to what has utility, what is practical, and how to improve what they have at our disposal. The sign encompasses a deep connection to the body and sensory world, with a tendency towards pragmatism and the analytical mind. Virgos have both a commitment to service and caring for others, as well as a need for autonomy. They oscillate between the fecund and sensual earth-mother and the virtuous, driven girl boss.
Here we see the splitting of the self in Beyoncé’s earlier years with the persona Sasha Fierce; her bold, sexy alter ego that she invented to cope with the shyness she felt when performing. Later, after killing Sasha off, Beyoncé described the union of the archetypal Virgo tension, commenting in an interview, “I don’t need Sasha Fierce anymore because I’ve grown, and now I’m able to merge the two.”
It makes sense that cerebral Virgo Jackson chose a chimp, Bubbles, as his close companion; they’re known for their intelligence. The odd pair traveled the globe hand-in-hand for years, often dressing alike.
Bubbles the chimp is not the only animal companion to participate in the grueling work schedule of a Virgo owner. Zendaya has spoken about the toll her on-set schedule has taken on her Miniature Schnauzer, Noon’s, social calendar, while Karl Lagerfeld’s feline muse, Choupette, became a celebrity, model, and lucrative businesswoman in her own right. Lagerfeld, another be-gloved Virgo, had a similarly eyebrow-raising closeness with Choupette, the cat that launched couture collections and became the heiress to a large chunk of his estate.
The sign of sartorial refinement, Virgos love an elegant uniform. Think Lagerfeld’s signature white ponytail, dark sunglasses, and black gloves. The designer is known for his meticulous attention to detail and notoriously cruel gaze of judgment. His beloved Choupette (herself a Leo) traveled with her own entourage of staff and security to entertain, feed, and administer her beauty treatments. Lagerfeld said he would marry her if he could, commenting, “She is the center of the world. If you saw her, you would understand.”
Upstaging indignant Leos on the internet by daring to release the hit “Virgo’s Groove” in their season, Beyoncé has dominated the musical discourse for weeks with the release of her new album, Renaissance. She emerges resplendent astride a luminous steed on the cover — the embodiment of the emancipated and sensual harvest goddess.
While Beyoncé's fans have long identified as “the Beyhive,” last year, Queen Bey revealed to British Vogue that she keeps a colony of 80,000 bees on the roof of her house and harvests hundreds of jars of honey. It comes as no surprise that this tireless Virgo feels a connection to hardworking insects. Reflecting the association of Virgo as the earthy healer, the sovereign of pop was drawn to beekeeping for the healing properties in honey, which help with both of her daughters’ allergies.
As with their human counterparts, pets born between August 23 and September 22 are highly intelligent, reliable, independent, and a little fastidious at times. Virgo rules the digestive system, the locus of their highly-attuned gut-instinct B.S. detector. As this sign is also linked with the nervous system, Virgo animals and humans tend to be their own worst critics and can be prone to anxiety, which can emerge as issues with digestion and food sensitivities. Long walks in nature are the antidote for this mental angst. As they say, cleanliness is next to “dogliness,” and the Virgo animal lover has a rigorous attitude to all aspects of pet-and-human-related hygiene and pampering.
Known as the most health-conscious of the signs, a Virgo pet owner will meticulously scour the ingredients list on pet foods. This is the kind of pet parent who will ask the vet about every single ingredient on their pet’s food. They need a special shampoo to get their dog’s coat shiny? Done. A special bed for their arthritis? Send over the link.
For animals and humans alike, Virgo season is a time for tending to our routines, rituals, and temples — our everyday surroundings and our bodies. This season, we survey the excesses of summer, write lists, embark on elaborate skin-care regimes, drink green smoothies, and get our houses in order for the coming winter. And, above all else, we take absolutely pristine care of the animals we love.
Alea is an astrologer, DJ, and writer from New Zealand who is currently based in Portland, OR. Her music shows and interviews can be found on NTS Radio at Lucifer Over Los Angeles, and her writing is featured in Butch is Not a Dirty Word and The Spinoff among others.