A PART OF ONE'S SOUL REMAINS UNAWAKENED"
(Anatole France, poet, novelist, journalist)
Saint Francis of Assisi is one of the most beloved and recognized saints. He proclaimed it was the duty of man to protect and enjoy the beauty of nature and animals. According to folklore he stopped along a road to preach to the birds perched in the trees and that they surrounded him and listened to his words. He is always shown in paintings and statutes as having a bird on his hand.
Science is learning more every day about the gift certain dogs, cats, and some birds in detecting cancer or the onset of a seizure. It is by some instinct or sense which we do not yet fully understand. Read this most interesting article: http://pets.webmd.com/features/pets-amazing-abilities
We as humans have been blessed with the help certain animals have given to the sick, blind, or paralyzed. Studies have shown the powerful healing that can occur when someone is engaged with an animal. The stimulation just from touch can relax muscles, increase blood flow, lower blood pressure, alleviate depression, and pain is often relieved.
Animals are used by law enforcement and rescue agencies.
In the Bible we are compared to sheep because we sometimes easily follow others, are harassed, helpless, get lost, or have the innocence and vulnerability of a lamb. Jesus is called The Good Shepherd. Be thankful for God's gift of animals. We need to treat animals and each other with love and kindness.
For many of us there is just the pure joy of petting, playing with, or being responsible for an animal. There is a certain discipline children learn early on when they have pets...to feed, care for, and love.
I always have had pets except for the last ten years when retirement, allergies, and illness has changed my lifestyle such that there are no pets in my life now. I have great memories of my several Siamese cats, St. Bernard dog, a few mutts, gerbils, guinea pigs, horses, and even a white rat. One year I tried to "potty train" one of the cats to use the toilet...that was a miserable failure. My Husky loved to run...but he ran too far and we got phone calls about her found miles away at a neighboring farm. The gerbil got out and we heard him running along the pipes. The white rat was a lab rat on which I did a vasectomy for the biology lab in college. We called him "Charlie Rich."
What animals have touched your life in a special way? Share your stories about your pets.