Humans and animals. What would we do, who would we be, without them?

When I see this film, I’m reminded of my veterinarian, who, while cradling and caressing one of my animals, looked into my eyes, incredulous: “And they say animals don’t have souls?”

(You might want to mute the sound track.)

Thought experiment: Imagine all the single people living alone in New York City without their animals.

And yet, according to the Humane Society, in the U.S. 2.7 million adoptable pets are “put down” each year.

Watch what happens to people in prisons with animals.

Just googled “animals in nursing homes.” Here’s something from 1986. Hope it’s still happening.

Nursing Home Pets A Boon to Residents

Podmate Katarina is going to get a kitten. Rebecca, next door, has adopted her recently deceased mother’s cat. So, in short order, in the two house Milkweed Pod of the Green Acres Neighborhood Ecovillage, we will soon be blessed with three dogs and five cats. Oh, and five chickens.

In my experience, animals keep us grounded to the mysterious living natural world below the soulless simulacrum of the matrix. They keep us honest, and real, and aware of more than just these damn screens.


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2 Responses to Humans and animals. What would we do, who would we be, without them?

  1. CindyW. says:

    Yes, Ann, it’s still happening. And in hospices. As my husband was dying in the St Vincent Hospice in Indy 3 years ago, they told me I could bring his dog to be with him, and I did. I also hear locally that our hospital allows (under certain circumstances) for pets to come in – I think in the rehab areas. Reading a beautiful book by David Abram called “Becoming Animal,” about how printed letters and the alphabet helped us sever our connection to the mystery, because oral cultures are not so separated. He tells about “grokking” with animals in the wild, or singing to them.

  2. I edit animal studies as part of my work, and we publish some wonderful books:

    There is a new frontier, too, critical life studies, which speaks of human-life relations, including plants, even stones and rocks–anything made of organic matter. Theory may not be as immediately practical as many would like, but it leads the way in changing the culture. Animal studies has slowly but inevitably changed how we think of human-animal relationships and the ethical worth of other species, as have black STUDIES, queer studies, women’s studies, and all the other.”studies” that terrify conservatives so much that they cannot even be taught in some high schools and universities.

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