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Ed's Corner: Giving Thanks

Monday, November 28, 2011 - 10:00am

This past Thanksgiving, I had so much to be thankful for. Of course, I am thankful for my family, including my dog, Jezebel, and my cat, Mr. B, and friends. I am thankful to enjoy good health. I am thankful to be surrounded every day by people who are dedicated to saving animals.

Even on bad days, I try to focus on all the things to be thankful for. Unfortunately, when your mission is to protect animals from cruelty, you often see images you wish you could erase from your mind forever. I know that most of you experience the same heartbreak when you hear about cruelty against animals. We have to steel ourselves against those images so that we can continue to fight on behalf of the animals.

Recently, the ASPCA held its annual Humane Awards Luncheon. One of my favorite award recipients was Mittens who won Cat-of-the-Year.

Mittens is a beautiful and sweet tabby who lives in Baltimore. In January of this year, Mittens was the victim of unspeakable cruelty—two teenage boys trapped Mittens while she was nursing her kittens, doused her in lighter fluid and struck a match. Mittens was able to escape the trap. Even though she must have been in excruciating pain (she had third and fourth degree burns covering 70 percent of her body), she returned to nurse her kittens.

Mittens was rescued by local police and was taken to the Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter where she recovered from the loss of her ears and severe burns. Throughout her treatment, Mittens continued to nurse her kittens. Mittens’ story has resulted in new laws being passed in Maryland that protect animals. How can you not be thankful for animals like Mittens?

Thank you to each and every one of you who loves animals and who works to make the world a better place for them—whether that is rescuing a homeless animal, volunteering at a shelter, writing your elected officials to support animal-friendly legislation, or simply spreading the word about how important animals are to you. Wishing you all a happy holiday season!

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James Sumner

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