November 5, 2008 > Ohlone Humane Society: The First Child
Ohlone Humane Society: The First Child
By Nancy Lyon
This may be the season for giving thanks but an email from a dear friend brought home the fact that many among us have little to be thankful for. That includes some wonderful critters who through no fault of their own, now look to us for help.
This letter is from Mia via her Auntie Chris. Mia lives at a distance but her story is one that is retold in many places. Too much pressure on growing families with many responsibilities and the animal family members unfairly become the focus of what needs to be jettisoned to lighten the burden.
"My name is Mia. I am a very sweet, 5 year old female yellow tabby cat. I am quite small and weigh only about 6 or 7 pounds. My Mom and Dad adopted me as a kitten, when it was just the three of us it was great. They gave me lots of attention and I loved it! Then they adopted a dog and now have a two year old son and a newborn. Since the kids came along, I don't get any attention anymore at all. I am basically on my own and very lonely. I know that my Mom loves me, but she has her hands full with the kids. Since I am on my own, I am very nervous around small children. Because of that, my parents no longer want me. They cannot find me a home.
Right now I am living in a small dark laundry room by myself because my parents are busy with the new baby. I am scared. I just want to be loved and I promise to love you back if you would like to adopt me into your home."
Mia was a loved fur-child for a while, and then it seems the need to add to their animal family displaced her more in their affection. When children came along Mia was literally lost in the shuffle. The first to be loved was the first to go.
I'll always remember a couple of years back when a young couple came into the Fremont animal shelter looking for a puppy - their reason for wanting a puppy? They wanted to practice with a young pup to see if they would be able to handle having a baby. It was pointed out to them that this pup was a special being and that if their "experiment" didn't work out what would happen to this wonderful little life they have taken on?
What if having a baby and parenthood became a burden, would they just walk way? The responsibility they would have accepted if they had adopted the pup would have been no different than it would be when they had a child. It was a lifetime commitment that should not be taken lightly. You worked it out even when they didn't live up to their expectations or fill your needs. Unfortunately, as in Mia's case, that just isn't always the reality.
Bottom-line is it boils down to the big "C" - Commitment. If your situation or lifestyle is in transition - don't, I repeat - don't - take on the responsibility of a dependent life as a "feel good" but temporary comfort. ..find some other consolation that does no harm.
If you are ready to intelligently and maturely to make a real commitment, our local shelters are filled with wonderful cats and other animals just looking for someone to love them and we should not forget or overlook them as their need is a great as Mia's.
But don't rule out little Mia who sits far away in a dark room hoping that somewhere "out there" is her special someone who will value her loving qualities and be her cherished friend and companion.
A final word from Mia - "If you are interested in being my forever family, please call my Auntie Chris ASAP, because my days are numbered. I live Northwest of Chicago, but my Auntie is willing to provide transportation to my new home. I am sending pictures of me that were taken in the dark laundry room I am living in, I just want you to know that I am much cuter in person. :)
If interested in hearing more of Mia's story, please contact: Chris Black at (650) 773-6813.