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Natural Awakenings South Jersey

All Living Things Are Miracles

Pets play an important role in most people’s lives. They connect deeply with us in a way that is hard to explain but easy to feel.

Through the years, my family has welcomed dogs, cats and birds into the clan. I vividly recall how our first dog, Bonnie, a rescued Lassie look-a-like became a lovingly watchful member of our family. When my parents reprimanded us kids for acting up, Bonnie would step between us in defense, making sure we weren’t scolded too hard. During our playtime inventions she obliged our poking and pulling her about with patience and wisdom.

A series of pound puppies followed. Rudy, a Christmas surprise, strutted freely around the neighborhood, glad that leash laws were nonexistent then, mooching biscuits and other friendly handouts from the dog lovers on our block. We didn’t realize the full extent of the mixed Dalmatian’s escapades until she passed and folks kept showing up at our door looking for her, missing her daily visits. The subsequent outpouring of cards and flowers made us realize how special she was to everyone.

As an adult, I yearned to establish a home with my own four-footed companion and on a brisk December Saturday found a beautiful fluffy white and tan puppy for my new bride at the local shelter. Cory turned out to be as smart as any human I’ve known. She broke into the biggest smile each time I walked in the door, warming my heart and making me forget the stress and strife of my day. Her strong border collie genes made her an ideal Frisbee dog and a careful herder of our tow toddler boys. She never left her duties, glad just to be with us. I warmly appreciate the life lessons each of these selfless pets has taught me.

“Mission: Animal Rescue” by Sandra Murphy, on page 16, reports on how we are slowly shifting our understanding of our role in Earth’s diverse animal kingdom and their vital roles in the health of people and the planet. The importance that each animal plays in the fabric of our own life is knowledge we are learning the hard way as species go extinct at an unprecedented rate. If any reasonable quality of life is to survive, we must find ways to keep the animals that remain healthy and well-populated in environments in which they thrive. Too often individuals as well as entire species are left for someone else to rescue and care about. Those that help these voiceless castaways are a special breed themselves.

This month we also learn about a local woman making a big difference in saving animals, in “Horse Rescue,” on page 20. Deborah Greer inspires others to do the right thing and help restore dignity to magnificent horses that have been misplaced and mistreated. I can’t wait to visit her Suffolk Stables in Southampton where loving care and patience gives each one a new purpose and meaning to life. Kudos, Deborah!

To seeing all living things as miracles,

Don Moore, Publisher

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