photo by Lillie Shallowhorn
And God made the beasts of the earth according to their kinds and the livestock according to their kinds, and everything that creeps on the ground according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.
Genesis 1:25 ESV
This is our dog, Sophie, aka Princess Sophie. Sophie is a beagle mix and she’s 6 ½ years old, full of spunk and a tad bit mischievous. She’s also a rescue. But like the bumper sticker says, “Who rescued who?”
Research shows that pets can be very therapeutic, which I can certainly attest to. Dogs, as well other animals, can serve in a number of ways: as service dogs, therapy dogs, and just plain old pets.
But there is something innately spiritual about animals. The question has even been raised, “Do animals have souls?” And while I do not profess to know the answer to this question, I will say that there is just something about animals that reflects God’s awesome work.
Just take a moment to look into Sophie’s eyes and tell me that there isn’t something there that is more than what meets the eye (no pun intended). If you have a dog (or cat, or horse, etc.) you know what I mean. Sometimes I hold her head in my hands and look deeply into those deep brown eyes. It’s a wonderfully spiritual experience.
And as I said previously, Sophie helps me with my mental health. When I’m stressed, all I have to do is call her and she readily comes to me, tail wagging, and ready to take my mind of my day’s troubles.
She also helps my physical health when I take her on walks, although she likes to sniff most the way as her breed is known for. In the end, it serves us both well.
Dogs (or cats, horses, etc.) aren’t for everyone. Some people are allergic. Some cannot afford the expense of taking care of a pet. And others just don’t like them, for whatever reason (past trauma, for instance). For those who aren’t willing or able to have a pet, I can empathize. But for me, I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Sophie has captured my family’s collective heart. We are able to give her an abundance of love which she returns, unconditionally. I will treasure the life I share with Sophie and pray that we have many more years to walk this journey called life together.