Someone must have thought of this already & if no one has, it’s an idea whose time has come: when you rescue a long-abandoned animal, there is a long period of sadness where they’re afraid & keep trying to escape. You can’t even let them out to pee without leashing or they’ll take off. They’re almost comatose & so guileless emotionally that you can watch as they slowly begin to trust affection. It takes time but they slowly begin to show their personalities & it’s a magical thing to be part of.

So here’s the idea whose time has come: there could be programs where shelters team up newly rescued animals with isolated seniors, senior centers, & traumatized children who would become part of the healing process. It would be so reciprocal–like a match made in heaven. I once had a rescue parakeet who threw her baby out of the nest. That’s almost certain death. I nursed the little birds for weeks. She slept & lived next to my heart & when I went to work she came with. At the time, I was doing professional organizing (one of the jobs I did when I got laid off) for an old irritable lonely rather antisocial man. I would give him little Daisy & tell him to love her up while I worked so she wouldn’t die. This was a guy who had been cruel to his children & his wives & once flew for the CIA. No prize package. But he was as lost & vulnerable as Daisy & he treated her with tenderness bordering on awe. Daisy lived for several years. (The fellow died later from neglect & over-medication.)

What do you think of the idea?