Main picture is Elmer, a lovely 6 year old Pug Mix, looking for a home NOW at the Niagara Falls Humane Society.  For more information, click HERE).


Have you been wronged?  Have you had something done or said that hurt you deeply?  Did you feel that you wanted revenge, or to ‘pay back’ the perpetrator of the nastiness?  

We can probably all answer yes to those questions.  If you made the decision NOT to retaliate, congratulations.  It takes a person with integrity to realize that revenge is not the higher road.  Equally important is not to hold a grudge or dwell on the incident to the point that it affects your own quality of life.  Forgiveness is imperative so that your own conscience is clear and you can move on.  This is so much easier said than done, particularly as the severity of the wrong can be either of minor consequence or at the other end of the spectrum–so horrendous and life damaging as to render the victim a changed person.

(Pictured below, Minka and Pedro, less than a year old bonded Chihuhuas who have a special adoption fee.  For more information CLICK HERE).


One of the many things I’ve learned during my years of walking dogs at the Shelter is that our four-legged furry friends are constantly demonstrating forgiveness.  Or perhaps it’s their ability to ‘live in the moment’ and grab at whatever happiness comes their way that makes it appear as though all past abuses and wrongs have been completely forgotten.  

(Looking for a Rotti Mix who REALLY has been waiting a long time?  Below, Carlos is your man!  For more information CLICK HERE).


An example that comes to mind is little Elmer, (our main picture), a Pug mix whose story you can read in his profile on our Adoptions website.  I spent a lot of time with Elmer before his adoption, and since his return to us I have been taking him for walks whenever possible.  In spite of what has happened–having a home for a while, then coming back to the Shelter–he is still a cheerful, happy go lucky fellow.  He loves to spend time outdoors in the play yard, chasing balls and toys, no matter how cold it might be.  And when our hour or so ends, he happily struts back inside and goes to his kennel…weary from lots of exercise and content to have a rest.  Now, I realize I am only seeing his side of the story.  I did not witness the events leading to his return and I am not forming an opinion.  However, I do admire his ability to move past what happened and get enjoyment out of life.  There is a lesson there for all of us.

(Pictured below, Lily, a Mountain Cur Mix who is a joyful little soul looking for a new home.  For more information CLICK HERE).


A little Chihuahua/Pomeranian mix came in to the Shelter.  He was abandoned at Value Village, for reasons that are a mystery.  I’m hoping he too can move on from that frightening experience and become a loving companion in his new home.  I was in the Shelter Lobby the day a woman brought in another tiny Chihuahua, wrapped in a blanket, saying she had found him wandering near the road.  He is also a senior dog, and looked so completely bewildered, my heart went out to him.  If he isn’t claimed and goes up for adoption, I know there will be the perfect person who will help this little guy forget his sad past and love him to bits for the rest of his life.

(Below Fred, a Coonhound Mix.  This cutie would love it if you came by and took him home.  For more information CLICK HERE). 


There are situations where permanent damage has been done to the spirit of our furry friends to the point that  they have lost the ability to forget, so they lash out or try to hide from the world.  

(Pictured below, Lancelot, a 5 year old beauty who would love to cuddle on your couch.  For more information CLICK HERE).


Sometimes it takes a lot of time and slow going gentleness to get them at the point where they can trust again. But I think (and hope) these are the exceptions, not the rule, and therefore we have an obligation to do our part in helping animals move on and upward to a better life, leaving the sadness behind.

(Below, little Birdie, a three year old who is as cute as a button, looking for a new home now.  For more information CLICK HERE).


Please visit our Niagara Falls Humane Society or the Cat Adoption Centre in person, or online, if you wish to be part of an animal’s rehabilitation and happy future, either by adopting, volunteering or donating needed items.  Your help is very much appreciated!

To see all available animals:

This week’s column written by By Phyllis Babyk

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