“I think I could turn and live with animals, they are so placid and self-contained. I stand and look at them long and long.” —Walt Whitman
I understand Walt Whitman in his praise for animals. I grew up on a farm, so have been around animals and birds—and nature, generally, all my life. This is an amazing world filled with wonder and beauty.
We humans think we’re unique in being able to remember what happens in our lives, but that’s not accurate. Not only can animals remember the happenings around them, but they are quite capable of showing appreciation for kindness offered them.
In our everyday world with our pets we hardly notice the ways they show appreciation, but watch them closely, and you’ll discover a different world. Did you ever notice how tolerant a lapdog is when its human “mother” dresses him up in some “cute” costume, or how protective a dog is of its adopted family’s children? It’s not at all, like they only want to dine on your love for them; they’re quite prepared to return the favor. Take, for example, the appreciation some stray dogs displayed at the funeral of Margarita Suarez in Yucatan, Mexico.
Margarita had been an animal lover all her life and would take a bag of food along with her whenever she went somewhere and would feed any strays she encountered along the way.
When several of these stray dogs suddenly came to attend Margarita’s funeral, staff at the funeral home soon realized that these dogs weren’t there by accident but had come to pay their final respects to the person who had showed them love when others had abandoned them.
Margarita’s daughter, Patricia, said that the dogs “formed a procession behind the hearse and then returned to the funeral home,” and never left until Margarita was being prepared for cremation.
“All dogs go to heaven because, unlike people, dogs are naturally good and loyal and kind.” —Whippet Angel