Here is a sample of some of the cats and dogs that I have photographed recently at the Chemung County SPCA.
For me one of the most important words in life is passion. I believe that it is critical to have passion in life. I try to plug into as many things that I am passionate about as possible. My beliefs are based on what I am passionate about. I study psychology because I am passionate about it. I am a photographer because I am passionate about it. I have companion animals because I am passionate about them. As my life has gone on, I have developed new passions.
I love dogs and animals in general. My wife and I currently have four dogs and two cats. We are also providing foster care for six kittens and their mother until the kittens are old enough to be adopted from our local animal shelter. When I say we I mostly mean my wife but it was a joint decision for her to do it since they would be in our house. There was a time when I would have worked hard to persuade my wife not to do this. This time was not too long ago in fact.
I had been against the idea of us providing foster care for cats not because I didn’t think it was a good thing to do, but because my wife has such a strong connection to animals that I feared she would not be able to let them go to be adopted and we already had sufficient commitments to our current companion animals that I did not think we could responsibly handle any more.
Not too long before the six kittens we have now my wife persuaded me to that she should provide foster care for one kitten who had no mother and would require bottle feeding. After discussing the matter and coming to the understanding that no matter what we would not be keeping the kitten we decided she should give it a shot.
People who know me probably know that I have resisted providing foster care and may wonder why I changed my mind. So I thought I would write about it.
The biggest reason why I have reversed my position on us providing foster care is related directly to passion. Over probably the past year, I have become increasingly educated on issues relating to companion animals. I have become increasingly informed about the past and present of our sheltering system in the United States. I have become aware of the No Kill movement in America. As I have become educated about animal sheltering the No Kill movement has become an issue I am passionate about. I firmly believe it can be achieved by any animal shelter that commits to doing it. I do not believe it will be easy but I believe there have been enough success stories to prove that it can be done.
It is this passion for the No Kill movement that convinced me to change. A key component in creating a no kill animal shelter is having concerned citizens volunteer to provide foster care for animals that the shelter cannot provide are for. This created a lot of dissonance in my mind. How can I truly support the No Kill movement and be unwilling to allow foster care for companion animals to happen in my home. So Finally it crystallized in my mind. If my wife is passionate about fostering companion animals then we should do it.