Ever since I was a young girl, I’ve had a close connection to animals.  My very first pet of my very own was a kitty named Squeaky.  On my 10th birthday, I begged and begged for my own cat.   He was a big ball of white fluff when I picked him out of my uncle’s barn.  Squeaky was my best friend and was with me all the time. He’d climb trees with me and watched as I read books.  He’d follow me around the yard as I played in the garden but mostly, he was always there when I needed a friend. I learned a lot from Squeaky, but the most important lesson was the value of friendship and unconditional love.  The day he died left a profound impression on me.  I could feel my heart breaking in a thousand pieces and I wasn’t sure how I was going to live without him.  But, in the end, I knew my heart was better for knowing him.

Since Squeaky, I’ve had the honor of being a pet guardian to many animal friends.  They’ve each taught me something about myself and helped me conquer my fears while at the same time shined a light on my strengths.  But that’s what pets do, don’t you think?