I often see people take on pets for support and to feed their need to nurture another creature. Pets can support people of all ages in offering unconditional love and comfort. Therapy dogs are now widely recognized beyond seeing-eye dogs. It is now fairly common to see dogs given special recognition as emotional therapy support. In addition, I have also seen a number of couples after moving in or marrying deciding that they will take on a dog before having children. It seems that learning to nurture a dog is becoming a preliminary training ground for couples preparing for the responsibilities of raising children. This blog post by Lexi Marietti is insightful and will bring a smile.
Experiencing animals in nature is another wonderful way to open our minds and hearts. When I was 17 my parents bought land and built a chalet in the Laurentians, just north of Montreal. This year-round city getaway was cherished by everyone until it was sold almost 30 years later. During this time we encountered a variety of animals. Every spring we dealt with a few resident mice. When walking or skiing in the forests we came across beaver dams, and we would see foxes, moose, deer, heard coyotes, a variety of birds, butterflies, fish, frogs, and other rodents. We learned to live in peace and harmony with these creatures.
Except, that is for the battle that ensued between my father and our local squirrel. My parents would spend their summer weekends and holidays at the chalet. During these visits, my father would busy himself with a variety of handyman and maintenance projects and his obsession with Sassy-Frass.