Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Hunter's Love for Animals

Over the past couple of weeks I have become increasingly aware that Hunter seems to, in fact, love animals. Of course, I knew he was pretty crazy about his dog, Maggie, but I didn't fully understand that he had developed a love of small furry critters in general (but not bugs, he adamantly insists). One afternoon we went to the local PetCo to attend a free puppy potty training seminar. While we were there, Maggie had a chance to play with another puppy.

I can hear you all saying "Awwww" in unison.
While we were at the seminar, someone brought in some cats on cages.
The truth is that Hunter had begged for a cat. He wanted a cat, not a dog. But since his dad forbade him to get a cat, we went with a dog. So when they brought in these kitties, Hunter gravitated over to them. He sat and looked at the cats until I pried him away from the store. He cried hysterically all of the way home. While we were there the staff insisted that he could come back any time he'd like and play with the kitties and we fully intend to do this very soon. I just hope he can handle leaving them behind each time.

During Vacation Bible School, Hunter asked to be exempt from the huge, loud, rambunctious giant pep rally that all of the kids were to attend before and after the class rotations each night. I found him a room of friends and dropped him off there... and it just so happened to be the "petting zoo" room. Our friends had "kindness" as their fruit of the spirit and in their room they had two dogs and a guinea pig. Hunter helped take care of the animals, clean up after them, and helped in any other way that he could. He felt so proud and accomplished AND his poor overloaded senses were able to skip the craziness of the noise and excitement... something he simply cannot handle since his long, isolated stay at Children's Hospital.

Here he is with Pineapple, the guinea pig.
I think he's going to start asking for one of these soon!

The final night of VBS was actually just a huge carnival for all of the children and their families.
And what does any good carnival have? A petting zoo.
Hunter spent a lot of time loving on this baby chick.

Of course, this little pony was a hit too.

Some friends told us about the local shelter that allows people to come in during any of their hours of operation and choose any dog and then grab a leash from a bucket and take the dog outside to their run for some play time. Hunter seemed excited about the prospect of the volunteer opportunity so we are certainly planning on taking advantage of it. I'll post about it once we've been.

Perhaps Hunter will run an animal sanctuary one day. Or perhaps he'll just grow up to have a lot of animals, cats included, and his dad will just have to cope when we visit. Regardless, it makes me happy to see him taking an interest in something that seems to warm his heart, give him purpose and worth, which is also very healing.

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