I am alone in my wanderings for a long time, but it hadn’t always been so. I have vague memories–little scraps of images–from the past: the tumble and tussle of warm fur, the shimmer of sun on my brother’s back, the freckle on my sister’s snout. We grew up and dispersed, given away from a box in a grocery store parking lot to anyone who would take us. We were held up and cooed over, and carried off under various people’s arms.
The person who took me changed his mind, tied me up in the back yard for months–with intermittent water and food–and then finally took me on a car ride and left me on the side of the road. I’ve been fending for myself since then. Sometimes I’m thirsty, sometimes I’m cold, often I am hungry.
This morning, a man saw me, stooped down and called to me. I approached him warily and then darted away. I have trouble trusting people. I just spotted him again. He is carrying a bowl that smells heavenly.
He sits quietly beside the bowl and I approach, then back away, then approach again. With one last sideways glance at the man, I lean toward the bowl and begin to eat. The man reaches out his hand and strokes my fur, first tentatively, then steadily. His voice is kind. When he slips a lead around my neck, he bends down to my level and says, “Come with me; we will find you a home” I go with him, to the first warmth and comfort I’ve known in a long time.
Cats make up approximately 70% of shelter population. It’s sort of obvious what you should do…ADOPT! Don’t Shop! There are many advantages when it comes to adopting cats from shelters. Many are already spayed or neutered. They are also current on their shots. Shelter volunteers are there for one reason: the good of the animal. They aren’t interested in a profit and any donation you make goes right back into helping more animals in need. I love cats, how about you?
by Julie E.H., Animal Rescue Site blog
Why do I inconvenience myself to help an animal in need? I’ve been known to be late for meetings, wading into the field alongside the road to call a skinny, scared dog to me and deliver him to the SPCA so that he can be helped, reunited with his owners or placed in a caring home. I’ve been known to humanely trap a feral cat, have her spade, release her, and provide ongoing food, water, and shelter to her. I’ve been known to adopt a rescue cat, a rescue dog. I’ve been known to telephone for help and wait by the side of an struggling, car-struck deer until animal control arrives to put it out of its misery. I’ve been known to contribute to neutering costs for people in financial hardship. Why, I’ve been asked, why?
The reason: because I feel deeply, can empathize with the feelings of others, and I care about the suffering and experience of individual animals. Of course animals can feel pain and fear. Of course they can suffer. I have a commitment to myself to do what I can to help, and it turns that with minimal effort, I can do a lot more than I originally thought I could. Doing so allows me to live in peaceful alignment with my values. Yes, it can be a nuisance at times, but it’s worth it. In the bigger picture, it doesn’t require that much of me, really, to help a creature to experience less pain, less hunger, less thirst, less bitter cold.
What if each of us committed to helping an animal in need? It’s so much easier to turn away, but that small sense of satisfaction that comes from bringing relief to another sentient being is a reward in and of itself. I am immensely grateful for the ability not to turn away.
AnimalPetitions.org, part of the ForceChange.com network, is dedicated to protecting both wild and domestic animals from abuse and harm at the hands of humans. The Animal Petitions community is comprised of passionate citizen activists dedicated to taking action to protect animals. The activism? Simply sign your name to petitions with messages you value.
AnimalsPetitions.org has contributed to a number of successes, including conservation funding for wild animals, tightened puppy mill laws, animal welfare law passage in Thailand, reenlistment of gray wolves as an endangered species, CEO resignation over animal abuse, and more.
Please consider signing your name (they do not share emails–I know this from personal experience). http://animalpetitions.org/
Wild & Domestic Animals illustration courtesy of Vlado, freedigitalphotos.net