As we prepare to celebrate a national day of Thanksgiving, it’s a good time to think about the blessings we have in our lives and speak our gratitude. But it is not a time for complacency, of saying thanks and then turning away.
Lets show our gratitude and our resolve.
I’m especially thankful to all the volunteers and organizations that stepped up not once, not twice, not three times, but four times and still counting. From hurricanes in Texas, Louisiana, Florida and Puerto Rico, to raging wildfires in Wine Country, Bay Area animal rescue groups leaped into action, bringing animals to safety and sending volunteers and resources to the battlegrounds to help wherever they could.
These groups already are working hard to provide shelter, care and new homes to pets, and to care for injured wildlife. What they and their fabulous volunteers did was nothing short of heroic, and it makes me happy and thankful to know them.
These are troubling times for wildlife. It seems every week there is some new threat. From the decision to allow elephant carcasses to be imported into the United States to the cancellation of a rule that would have helped prevent endangered whales and sea turtles from becoming entangled in fishing nets off the West Coast, it would appear the powers that be are turning their backs on wildlife.
This isn’t a political debate — it’s about doing the right thing for animals, that don’t care if the person killing them is a Republican or a Democrat. I urge you to follow the news on these changes and speak up to your friends and your legislators. Speak out for the animals. It’s important.
I honestly don’t know where I would be without my dog, or all of the animals that have wandered through my life.
As a child I had a succession of kittens that willingly shared in my backyard adventures solving mysteries, battling pirates and taking flights into space. They silently encouraged my passion for storytelling — they were always good audiences — and they helped shape my future.
We had a series of family dogs, but I don’t think I knew the true love of a dog until I adopted Bailey, my awesome Chihuahua. Or maybe he adopted me. He has stuck by me through some hard times and has given me nothing but unconditional love. I’m grateful for him every second of every day, even when he barks loud and long at the vacuum cleaner or steals my socks.
For all of the pets like Bailey who make it into good homes, there are dozens more in search of them. And for some, they never will have that forever home.
If we love our pets, let’s try to do better for those in shelters. Let’s advocate for no-kill public shelters and let our city and county leaders know that they need to give these shelters more public funds.
And let’s not shirk our own responsibility. If you have the time, volunteer with any of the rescue groups. You can foster pets, take dogs for walks or socialize kittens. And if you don’t have time, send them a few dollars with a note of thanks.
It’s not enough to be thankful for animals; they also need our help