Archive for the ‘Personal’ Category

The Wave of Compassion

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As I sat on a beach in Victoria, Australia the other day, admiring the dramatic limestone stacks known as the Twelve Apostles, a sense of euphoria washed over me. I was thinking about the notable shift happening in our world. The stacks have been crumbling, succumbing to the strength of the sea. Similarly, the houses in the world built on greed are collapsing against waves of compassion. An army of caring people is building, activating.

As I inhaled the salty air from the Southern Ocean, I thought of just a few of the dramatic changes that have happened so far in 2015:

-Barnum & Bailey Circus has promised to, at long last, retire its elephants.

-The Greyhound racing industry in Australia came to a halt when undercover video exposed leaders illegally baiting dogs with live animals. Sponsors have pulled money, trainers have been banned for life and the entire board of Greyhound Racing Australia NSW was dismissed.

-The city of Madrid, Spain announced that it would no longer euthanize homeless dogs.

-The city of Nashville, Tennessee voted to make it illegal to chain dogs indefinitely.

-In Alabama, a convicted animal abuser received a 99-year jail sentence. Goodbye!

-The city of Palm Beach, Florida banned wild animals for private parties/events.

-Three of the largest food providers; Compass Group, Sodexo, and Aramark announce plans to go cage-free for chickens in the USA.

-Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts announced cage and crate-free policies for hens and sows.

-Shane Rattenbury, a politician, introduced legislation in Australia to ban puppy and kitten farming in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT.) The Domestic Animals (Breeding) Legislation Amendment Bill passed unanimously!

When people gather to do good things, good things happen. Please keep signing petitions, emailing legislators, writing letters to judges, contacting newspaper and television reporters, and supporting charities. Thank you for being part of the wave of compassion.

Photo: Blaine Zuver

Love Has No Boundaries

LOVE is not defined by size or shape.  I love the Divinity of Dogs Facebook page because of its fans. They’re crazy for dogs and are always eager to help make the world a better place for them. But every now and then a nasty comment pops up out of nowhere like a dark cloud. This week someone posted a comment about a photo of my dogs saying: “Pretty little Hand bag Dogs, but just pretty. Not real Dogs, stop this silly fluffy stuff.”

Her unenlightened comment has prompted me to tell you a story.

It’s a special week in my house. It’s the annual week that everyone came home. Honey is on the right and she’s pure sweetness. Honey’s blind in one eye and is deaf. She’s showing early signs of kidney failure. I think she’s about 13 years old. I rescued her three years ago this week from the pound where she was patiently waiting for someone to claim her. But they didn’t. On the left, the guy with the under bite is Sunny. Sunny joined the family two years ago after being dropped off at the Dogs’ Refuge Home.   The person who delivered him, a Nanny, said she’d been told to get rid of him “before the children got home.”  She said he’d lived outside for the first year and a half of his life by himself and had never been allowed inside.  He was matted. He hadn’t been trained or loved. He didn’t know what another dog was and he didn’t trust people. In the middle of this photo is a little dog named Happy. She didn’t look like this when I met her. She looked like one of the worst neglect cases that are now all too commonly seen on Facebook. She was matted, flea-infested, riddled with ear and tooth infections, was loaded with mammary cancer and was suffering from 30 minute-long epileptic seizures. She’d run away from her abusers seven times over a period of eight weeks, each time ending up at the dog pound only to be returned to her house of hell by a well-meaning dogcatcher. But the last time she was taken back, her abusers were asked to pay the pound fees. They refused, throwing this tiny dog into the air and kicking her like a football into the street.

When I walked into the Refuge one Saturday morning to walk dogs, this precious gift looked at me with excitement and screamed telepathically, “It’s you! Finally! Come get me out of here!” I did as I was told and the rest is an even longer story. But you’ve got the picture. Happy joined the family one year ago. She was not expected to live the full year but here she is and she’s going strong.

I choose to rescue dogs and they always bring extraordinary gifts into my world. Honey has injected sweetness into my life. Sunny has been converted into a cuddler, and Happy… Happy is my joy.

Love has no boundaries. Anyone who has known the love of another species knows this truth. –Jennifer Skiff

Sunny, Happy, Honey

Sunny, Happy, Honey