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Annals Of Animal Compassion

May 16, 2013

The more we see and learn, the more we have to rethink our assumptions regarding animal emotions, and the more we have to attribute real feeling, and real suffering, to non-human animals. For example, Marc Bekoff comes up with a powerful and surprising story of cross-species mourning:

I’ve written a number of essays about grief and mourning in nonhuman animals (animals) and just today I learned of a most heartwarming video of a dog named Bella deeply grieving the loss of Beavis, her beaver friend.

Here’s a brief description of Bella and Beavis’s close friendship.

Before Beavis passed away, he and Bella were inseparable. They ate together, played together, and even shared living quarters. Beavis passed away in 2012, but the pair’s story resurfaced after a video that the owner shot of the two appeared on Reddit.

“In the heartbreaking video, Bella lies by the side of her deceased companion and appears to cling to the idea that Beavis might just sleeping. As Bella seems to realize that her friend is not coming to life, she whimpers, nuzzles, and licks her friend as if trying to say goodbye.”

If that doesn’t help change your moral calculus regarding the lives of animals, then I’m not sure what will.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Mademoiselle B. permalink
    May 17, 2013 6:09 am

    I’m reading the book ‘How Animals grieve’ by Barbara J. King. Lots of similar stories, its a fascinating book. I definitely recommend it!

  2. May 18, 2013 9:24 pm

    The study of animal grief is so important for all of us, both for connecting with the animals around us, and for thinking about (and acting towards) treating animals with the dignity and compassion they deserve.

    Mademoiselle B., I’m so delighted you are finding my ‘How Animals Grieve’ worthwhile.

  3. May 24, 2013 8:14 am

    Reblogged this on newearth818 and commented:
    It never fails to amaze me how simple compassion and altruism flow so naturally from those “lesser” animals who lack the ego that is the bane of human existence. It is this fragile human psyche that brings us down rather than lifts us up in the evolutionary scale.

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