In my family, we have a long history of being suckers for animals in need. When I was little, I brought home anything that seemed even slightly abandoned. A bird with a bad wing and a matching bad ‘tude that I fed with an eye dropper. A guinea pig that showed up at our back door demanding food, loudly (have you ever heard one of those things squeal?). A snapping turtle rescued from a pond (I still have a scar from that one…). A very pissy old cat that didn’t necessarily want to be domesticated but did enjoy the softness of my bed. If it needed rescuing, I was all too happy to do so. My parents, not so much. But they never said a word to discourage me. I’d been dating Alpha Man approximately one week when I found the duck in the middle of the road in Los Angeles. He drove an ambulance at the time, and I called him and said I needed help. When he arrived, I’m pretty sure he was surprised to find himself helping me nurse an injured duck but he was game. In fact, it was only a few months later that he himself rescued an abandoned dog who’d been hit by a car. We took him to the vet together. Poor little guy needed surgery and a good home. We named that dog Max, for Maximum Amount Of Money Ever Spent On A Dog, and he lived fifteen wonderful years and was the love of my life for every single one of those years.
We went on to rescue many more animals over the years. During this time we also raised three daughters. Our oldest, a chip off the old block, volunteered at our local humane society one summer a few years back. No one will be surprised to know that I got a call that started with “mom, there’s this two day old abandoned kitten…” Who can say no to a two day old abandoned kitten? Certainly not me. We’ve had Satan— er, Sadie, ever since.
These days my oldest daughter fosters kittens and puppies for the San Francisco SPCA. She takes in abandoned animals and takes care of them until they are old enough and weigh enough to be neutered and can be adopted.
And honestly? I couldn’t be more proud. I’m also, as I type this, holding a teeny, tiny baby bunny that we found in our yard today, apparently abandoned. The cycle never ends….