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Monday, February 2, 2015

Winter Writing or Don't Leave Your Pets or Your People Out in the Cold

Photo by Laura Bear 2015
Being home sick from work during a winter storm isn't all bad. Once I arose from the bed, took a hot shower, gargled salt water, and drank hot herbal tea, I began to feel well enough to write a little. My throat still feels like two golf balls are battling to come through either side of my neck, but at least I can swallow without too much pain. All the little birds outside look fat as they puff out their feathers to stay warm. Plenty of seed and nuts in the feeders for my winged friends and the feral cat is snug in his insulated house with the feline-body-heat-specific heating pad. The rest of us have the cozy woodstove, thanks to the efforts of my spouse. Now I can enjoy the snowy scenes outside.

I can't help thinking about the people and animals that don't have adequate shelter or food or water in this frigid weather. Dogs and cats require the same shelter that we do. They are not "meant" to be outside all the time. We made sure of that through centuries of breeding. Unless your dog is a husky with a thick coat and loves to pull a sled through the icy winds of Alaska, your dog needs more than an unheated dog house and deserves much more than life on a chain (that includes the husky). Bring the dog in, feed it, give it plenty of water and love it or give it to someone who will do this. Same goes for cats. House cats are not lions. They may think they are, but they need warmth and shelter and food and drink. Take care of them or ask someone else who can do it for you. I'll get off my soapbox as soon as I mention the homeless people, okay? If you see someone out in the cold, offer to take them in for a cup of coffee or call someone who can help them find shelter if you can't. If we can't take care of each other, including animals that depend on us for food and shelter; if we won't take care of those of us who can't take care of themselves; what kind of world is it that we want to live in? A world where no one cares is a doomed world. A smile leads to more good than a scowl ever would.

That's all I have to say on this cold, February day. My intention is to keep my eyes open for opportunity to do some good. I wish the same for you. Blessings to you all.