Perhaps the most uplifting Christmas story of year so far was about a three-legged golden retriever appropriately named Tripod. The dog was adopted from the animal shelter at the Humane Society of Southeast Missouri by Capetown Assisted Living in Cape Girardeau. The dog spends its days cheering up the residents.
How animals instinctively know what to do around humans in need is a mystery, just like so many of the miracles described in the Bible. Awhile back the Associated Press had a story about a cat at a nursing home that seemed to know when a resident was near the end of this earthly life. The cat would go to that room and stay. Relatives said the cat provided a wonderful service, allowing them to be by the bedside of a loved one at such a critical time.
One of the activity directors at Capetown Assisted Living described Tripod as "not like most dogs. He's been such a blessing." That's the same praise for a dog or cat that could be echoed by countless pet owners who have seen animals behave in ways that provide comfort, bring a smile and make us feel a little better about the dawn of each new day.
The animal shelter is full of these animals. If you're looking for a pet that can bring both joy and mystery into your life, consider adopting a stray. Even if it only has three legs.