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How would you like to be led around in public by a leash attached to a collar? And just when you leaned down to smell something your owner yanked your head back up because they were in a rush to move on? Or, when you finally stopped long enough so that you could relieve yourself, they jerked your head back up again before you were finished?
Please, dog owners, you have chosen to be the stewards of these trusting, loving, intelligent and forgiving creatures. Treat them with the understanding, respect, dignity and love they deserve. Take time to get to know your dog, I mean reallllly know them. You’ll see by my precious kitty, Phoebe’s page, that I never cease to learn new things about her and deepen my communication with her. Even though I have had pets all my life she was our first rescue who was very damaged emotionally and psychologically, as well as physically. With years of patience and understanding – and love – she has blossomed into the most amazing pet I have ever known.
So, I guess what I am trying to say here is to please treat your dog with the dignity and respect they deserve and consider getting a harness/leash for your walks instead of a collar/leash. They would do anything for you – that is the least you can do for them. I don’t have a dog now but we do walk our other cat, who happily wears a soft harness from Puppia.
Take time to get to know your pet. The time you set aside for walks is a great opportunity to do this. Dogs are like people in that some are really interesting, some not, some smart, some not, some funny, some not, etc. etc. – and, like people, they are unique combinations of a multitude of qualities. What is truly wonderful is that, like children, they give back exponentially what they get.
ps – and for God’s sake please never punish your dog for having an ‘accident’. Whether they pee, poop or throw up – IT’S NOT THEIR FAULT. NEVER. There is either a physical or psychological underlying factor. It is your responsibility as their kind and loving steward to figure out what it is – and to do so with gentleness and understanding. Remember, they want to please you, so if you teach them lovingly how to please you they will be eager to oblige.
In the mid 1980s America’s first farm animal sanctuary was established. Today, Farm Sanctuary, located in upstate New York and in California, serves as a model for sanctuarys like Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary in Poolesville MD. Located on 400 acres of pristine up-county Maryland farmland, Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary serves as a beacon of comfort, care, rehabilitation and permanent sanctuary for our nation’s neglected, abandoned or unwanted factory-farmed animals, victims of inhumane confinement and cruelty.
It is here at the sanctuary that each rescued animal is transformed from a commodity into being recognized as the cogent being that they are, respected and cherished for their individuality. And it is this very transformation that serves to caution us not to abuse the gift of dominion that God gave to us. Instead of choosing to rule God’s gifts through tyranny, we should instead choose to rule in the image of God’s loving dominion over us, his children, by exercising benevolent stewardship over the the fruits of our earth.
For their part each year, and along with other farm sanctuarys across the country, Poplar Spring’s Thanksgiving with the Turkeys event shines a light on the cruel and needless annual slaughter of millions of factory farmed turkeys by hosting a vegan potluck dinner for hundreds of their friends and supporters.
Preparations are well under way for dining with the turkeys!
Sprital and Irene are chickens rescued from Hurricane Katrina.
Gobbles is how we picture what a traditional Thanksgiving turkey looks like. However, years ago consumers were turned off by the dots of color from the black feathers that sometimes remained on the skin of packaged turkeys. So factory farmed turkeys were bred to have only white feathers. As a result of consumer’s demands for bigger, plumper breast meat, further genetic manipulation has produced freakishly overweight turkeys who suffer from devastating chronic organ disease and painful, crippling bone disfigurements. Their life of torture and misery begins shortly after hatching, when turkeys (as well as chickens) have the ends of their beaks and toes clipped off. These mutilations are performed without anesthesia, ostensibly to reduce injuries that result when birds stressed by confinement and pain are driven to fighting.
You can learn many more documented facts of animal cruelty practices as it relates to turkeys and other poultry here.
Edward Peacock is the first to arrive!
Wilbur is a pig who was rescued from a Virginia farm where he had been left to starve.
Harry is a pig who was used in university medical research, his entire miserable existence spent alone in a small cage. When his research was done he was brought to Poplar Spring.
Jake was a 4-H project calf who was sold by the girl who raised him at a 4-H auction. Thankfully, a neighbor who had fallen in love with him was the winning bid against a slaughterhouse.
Jacob fell off a veal auction-bound truck at one-day old, with his umbilical cord still intact. He was rescued from the side of the road.
Hearing the heartwarming tales of rescue
Everyone partakes in Thanksgiving!
” That’s where the goats and sheep are hiding! ”
Lenny is a goat who was born on a dairy farm and the same day discarded on a pile of dead and dying babies by the farmer.
As a newborn lamb Hickory was rejected by his mother and subsequently abandoned and left to die by the farmer who owned him.
Bought at auction Dorothy and another sheep were destined for slaughter for a family’s religious holiday. The family was so traumatized after killing the first sheep that they brought Dorothy to Poplar Spring.
Hannah the goat was found wandering in a park in SE Washington DC.
Living outdoors in the fresh air in a natural setting at last!
No more fear of being tortured by mass confinement, force feeding and chronic, painful organ disease for Foie Gras!
The rescued animals of Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary are now living the balance of their lives in a beautiful sylvan setting, freed from a life of misery and a gruesome death. However, even with the loving care and rehabilitation administered by the sanctuary’s loving and dedicated staff, the grim reality is that many of the sanctuary’s animals retain permanent emotional, psychological and physical disabilities. Here at the sanctuary you can see up close the devastating results of animal engineering, hybridized animals bred to meet the demands of mass consumption. The super-sized cows and pigs struggle painfully to support their out-sized frames, and many of the chickens and turkeys fail to eat in a normal manner, having to compensate for the results of factory farming’s painful de-beaking process.
Yet, despite their tragic histories, it is inspiring and uplifting to witness the profound results that loving patience and care has on healing the inner spirit of these survivors, encouraging them to courageously and joyfully go on with their daily lives. We have much to learn about the power of persistence, determination and forgiveness from these ‘other nations’ who would have every reason to want to continue to live in terror of us.
For those of you who choose to eat meat I would at least ask you to please consider compassionate choices. Become a conscious thinker and learn the real truth behind many of the labels such as ‘cage free’, ‘free range’ and ‘grass fed’. You can start by visiting reliable organizations’ websites like Mercy for Animals, Humane Myth, and Farm Sanctuary to find out how you can make more informed, cruelty-free choices.
Loving … Courageous … Survivor … Loyal … Funny … Head Banger … Nose Wiper … Mensa Girl … Old Soul … Sport … Instigator … The Distracter … Just the Sweetest Thing … Moody … Intuitive … All-Seeing … SUCH a good girl … Tiny Tiny Gurrrl … Flying Girl … The Snapper … Social Director … Fairy Cat … Fairy Purrrrr … Tripod … Pod … Princess Ballerina … Phoebe Angela …Goosie Girl … Careful … Headlong … Monkey Girl … Exterminator … Ripped! … Amazing! … Busy … Lazy … MIA … Wicked Sense of Humor … Sprite … Bossy … perfect–in–every–way … “other nations“
take the time to get to know your pet
you’ll be amazed
and in the process you might notice some growth in your ‘self’ as well
Eating a vegan diet does not mean that you are going to lose weight. It is fat and sugar that make us fat. It’s really that simple. A vegan eating too much oil and sugar is going to get just as fat as a meat eater eating too much meat, dairy and sugar. Meat eaters who maintain their weight do so only because their fat and caloric intake is equal to the energy that their body burns through exercise. Even as a vegan, I climb on the scale every morning to make sure I am not gaining weight. I also know that unless I get those few hours of exercise in every week, those pounds are going to creep back on.
However, it is because their diet is high in animal cholesterol that slender meat eaters face the same health issues (heart disease, cancer…) as overweight meat eaters. An overweight vegan who eats too many meals like the burger shown here, though they are not going to look as hot in a bikini as a slender meat eater, is a whole lot healthier on the inside. Their blood flows freely through their veins and their organs function as they should, negating the need for cholesterol, blood pressure and even Stage II diabetic medications. It is a proven medical fact, and is even stated in some of the product commercials for erectile enhancement pills, that the reason why men get erectile dysfunction is because those vessels down there are clogged with cholesterol, thereby causing performance issues for little johnny.
And so, besides the important ethical reasons related to factory farming, the next important reason for eating a vegan diet is to improve and extend the quality of your physical health. Most Americans consume meals that include animal protein amounts higher than 10%. Scientist call this the Western Diet, and attribute it to the steep increase in vascular and cancer diseases. One of the scariest things about eating meat and dairy is that many researchers and scientists have established a link between the ingestion of animal cholesterol and casein (known as cancer ‘triggers”) in our Western Diet and our ranking as number one for breast cancer in the world.
The literature that definitively lays out for laymen the reasons for us to rethink our Western diet is The China Study, written by Dr. T. Colin Campbell. From thechinastudy.com:
“Early in his career as a researcher with MIT and Virginia Tech, Dr. Campbell worked to promote better health by eating more meat, milk and eggs — “high-quality animal protein … It was an obvious sequel to my own life on the farm and I was happy to believe that the American diet was the best in the world.”
He later was a researcher on a project in the Philippines working with malnourished children. The project became an investigation for Dr. Campbell, as to why so many Filipino children were being diagnosed with liver cancer, predominately an adult disease. The primary goal of the project was to ensure that the children were getting as much protein as possible.
“In this project, however, I uncovered a dark secret. Children who ate the highest protein diets were the ones most likely to get liver cancer…” He began to review other reports from around the world that reflected the findings of his research in the Philippines.
Although it was “heretical to say that protein wasn’t healthy,” he started an in-depth study into the role of nutrition, especially protein, in the cause of cancer. The research project culminated in a 20-year partnership of Cornell University, Oxford University, and the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine, a survey of diseases and lifestyle factors in rural
China and Taiwan. More commonly known as the China Study, “this project eventually produced more than 8000 statistically significant associations between various dietary factors and disease.”
The findings? “People who ate the most animal-based foods got the most chronic disease … People who ate the most plant-based foods were the healthiest and tended to avoid chronic disease. These results could not be ignored,” said Dr. Campbell.
In The China Study, Dr. Campbell details the connection between nutrition and heart disease, diabetes, and cancer, and also its ability to reduce or reverse the risk or effects of these deadly illnesses. The China Study also examines the source of nutritional confusion produced by powerful
lobbies, government entities, and irresponsible scientists.”
Dr. Campbell is a vegan, as is the head of the breast cancer clinic at the number one ranked cancer treatment hospital located in NYC (I know this because my dd worked their as a chemo nurse).
As long as the medical research, education, media exposure and legislation for humane practices continue to bear out the rationale for eating a vegan diet we can look forward to a time when humans will enjoy better health and live in a more humane environment. No longer will we buy into the hype that there is a magic pill to solve all of our problems. Most of all, there would be a dramatic shift in our self-centered and ingrained 1960s-based cultural focus of “I should have whatever I want”, to “I should have what is good for me so that I can be the best person that God wants me to be.”
“We need another and a wiser and perhaps a more mystical concept of animals. Remote from universal nature and living by complicated artifice, man in civilization surveys the creature through the glass of his knowledge and sees thereby a feather magnified and the whole image in distortion. We patronize them for their incompleteness, for their tragic fate for having taken form so far below ourselves.
And therein do we err. For the animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours, they move finished and complete, gifted with the extension of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear. They are not brethren, they are not underlings: they are other nations, caught with ourselves in the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendour and travail of the earth.”
Henry Beston American writer and naturalist