“God bless you, little animal” and Other Sappy Feelings

I’m not sure if I’m an idiot or compassionate, but I’m definitely sad.  On my way home from work this afternoon, one of the cars in front of me hit a little squirrel. I didn’t know until I came up closer and saw it flailing in the middle of my lane, clearly badly injured.  I’m not particularly a fan of squirrels but I love animals and it really broke my heart.  It was flopping around, like it was trying desperately to get up.  I contemplated the rest of the way home if there was something I could do for it, so it wouldn’t suffer any longer, but I couldn’t imagine running it over to “end it” either.

I’m such a sucker for animals, yet I’m such a hypocrite with living things.  Here I am with tears for this little squirrel that I have zero connection with, but when I listen to the news and hear about humans who’ve tragically died; it doesn’t upset me this much.  I feel bad for them and their families of course, I’m not cold or heartless.  Maybe it’s the fact that I saw the squirrel struggle and there was nothing I could do for it.  I mean, I know if it were a person who got run over, I would feel just as affected.  And if you’ve followed me for some time now, you also know that I don’t like crying; that somewhere I have some deep seated distain for it.  I’m slightly embarrassed that my husband will come home soon and see my puffy eyes because of a simple squirrel.

I’ve seen plenty of road kill in my day.  I suppose my sensitivity comes from my Mom.  She is very compassionate and loving.  Since as long as I can remember, if we ever saw a dead animal, she’d say “God bless you, little animal”, even if it were a big deer.  It was something that I consider sweet and kind because they live and hurt like we do.  I started saying it myself when I got my license and had/have gotten made fun of many times by fellow passengers.  It didn’t bother me because I knew I wasn’t doing anything wrong.  I’d feel like an ass if I stopped saying a simple blessing because of peer pressure.

I’m not even a vegetarian.  Continue reading

Puggy Love

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Pugs are pretty popular. Ours has been popular since we got him eight years ago. Locally, he has following. A few years ago, girls in my brother’s high school had designed shirts with his picture on it and people constantly ask about him as if he’s our actual child. I don’t know if it’s because the dog is special, or we are…

Oscar Irwin found his way into my heart 8 years ago, at a time when pretty much any responsibility seemed like a hassle. He reminded us of George Burns, with his rawhide looking like a cigar and his old man face.  I won’t bore you with the details, but I knew I had to have him; even though the seller told me he was discounted because he was “defective”.  That’s right, she called my dog defective.  He is not a dented can of soup; he is a living and barely breathing pug. There was no way I could leave him with those people.  I have an idea, stop allowing people to interbreed their dogs.

Anyway, despite his “defective” breathing, he is a character.  I got a pug training book once and I kid you not, the first line said: “So you want to train your pug, good luck”. Still I can’t imagine our home without the sound of snorting or the click-clack of his little paws as he tap dances down the hallway.

I suspect that this may attract the same people who watch the “pug tilting head” videos on YouTube.  It’s late on a Sunday night and all I can think of is the little guy snoring next to me, this is all I got today.  Enjoy!

Are Animals More Approachable?

Galway horse, if only we knew your name.

Animals have feelings too. They do. I’ve actually seen my pug cry. They are a very needy and unique breed.

As a lifelong animal lover, I banned myself from going to the animal shelter unless I’m actually ready for a new pet. It’s a hereditary issue as my Mom has the same problem. My childhood seemed like a revolving door of animals I got to name and never got to keep. You see, my Mom would bring home animals and never ran it by my Dad. The animals left but never went far, as they always found a good home at my Grandmothers. This was supposed to make me feel better because I’d know where they are and get to visit. It really wasn’t the same and perhaps why I’m so attached to my dog as an adult.

I started thinking about animals today when I ran across a picture from our first trip to Ireland. All over the country, dogs and other animals seemed to roam freely and have lives of their own. My husband joked that I was an animal whisperer, because if there was a dog, horse, cat or sheep within our vicinity, it always seemed to approach me and just sort of linger for a moment.

We laughed, when in towns big and small, dogs seemed to walk themselves, sans person or leash. They stayed on sidewalks and apart from the occasional “business” matters they attended to, seemed very much a part of the town society. It seemed alarming at first, seeing stray animals. Apart from worrying they’d be hit by cars or if they were hungry, it just seemed sad that they were homeless. It later seemed that maybe this is just how things are there and in fact they just led lives of their own.

The first time we passed a strolling dog, walking himself, my husband greeted him in a comical way by saying, “Good morning Sir”. Because we tend to stick with jokes longer than necessary, this became an ongoing bit that eventually led us to question why we seemed more comfortable saying hello to a passing dog, but not an actual person. We are not anti-social by any means, but perhaps in surroundings that are new, it seemed safer to be outgoing with something that could only respond with a snort or sniff.

As the trip went on, various types of animals crossed our paths from kitty cat to goat. This is one of my favorite pictures, of a beautiful horse that approached us on the side of a road outside of Galway. But I better clarify, that we did eventually find some of the loveliest people to talk to there, that we ever had the pleasure of meeting.