I almost didn’t write this post because I know I’ll be judged for it. I know this because if I’d read a post like this just over a year ago I would have judged the person who wrote it. I would have assumed the writer was a spaced out hippie or New Age nut who’d lost touch with reality. I’ve decided to share anyway, so here goes.
I’ve been following a plant-based diet for just over a year and it’s altered my thinking about animals. Not eating animals has somehow increased my respect and compassion for them.
Now I attempt to live in a way that doesn’t harm animals. I no longer buy leather and I choose personal care products that are not tested on animals. I’ve transitioned my dog to a vegan diet. And when there’s a spider in my house I collect it and put it outside.
I don’t typically put a lot of thought into being kind to animals, it’s become automatic. Something happened the other day, however; that made me consider my actions. I was at Petco bathing my dog in their do-it-yourself dog wash when I noticed he had a tick. I called an employee over and asked her to remove the tick while I held my dog down.
The employee removed the tick and I could tell that it was alive because its little legs were wiggling. My first thought was I should tell her to put it outside. This notion was rapidly replaced with images of the employee laughing as she told the other employees about the wacky lady who wanted to save a tick, and I kept my mouth shut.
Maybe I am a wacky lady, but I feel bad for allowing shame to prevent me from saving a life. Now I’m imagining that many of you reading this are laughing at me and thinking, it’s just a bug.
Photo courtesy of bioblitz.missouri.edu.