One of the greatest gifts to humanity from the Mother and from the Father is the gift of animals. ….. all animals, for they carry the love, they carry the balance, and they teach how to live in harmony with oneself, with one’s companions, how to establish workable boundaries, how to breathe and eat and feed, and lie in the sun, and hibernate. But it is especially true of the animals that accompany upon the journey of life, because what they hold is the unconditional love, is the essence of that balance of give and receive.

St. Francis of Assisi