I think I’ve made it pretty clear that I’m a big proponent of change at all levels of society, and I came across an article that I found particularly interesting in that it challenged me to think in a different way. I like that, I really really like that.
While the subject might seem moot in a time in history when so many of fellow humans are suffering, the way we treat animals is often a reflection of the way we treat each other (maybe one day I will be tempted to write a whole essay on the subject; we’ll see).
In any case, I came across an open letter to Obama written by Sergeant Mike Dowling, who is a Military Working Dog Handler at USMC. The letter was interesting in that it challenged (very politely and with persuasive arguments) for the president-elect to consider adopting a military working dog veteran (who can forget that fateful election night, when Obama told his daughters he would fulfill his promise of a dog at the White House?).
Why did I find this interesting? Because by adopting a military working dog veteran who has served the country and needs a place to retire, the Obamas would be performing an act of service, not just indulging their children.
Personally, I am of the school of thought that, in most cases, pets are a waste of money, time and resources that could be put in a far worthier cause. I love them, don’t get me wrong, but really, spending so much money on an animal when so many are dying? It was always hard for me to accept.
But for the second time ever, I had to sit back and think about my attitude regarding pets. Not only are they ultimately a lot of fun to have, teach children about responsibility and bring extra cheerfulness into a household, but there are many ‘working’ animals who should be lucky enough to be taken in by a loving family. And I can say that this has opened my eyes in ways that no argument any of my pet-loving friends ever has.
Read the letter written by Sergeant Mike Dowling here.
And for those of you who are interested… The first time was when I realized how animals can be therapeutic for individuals suffering from various conditions.