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Bedlam Farm/Jon Katz and The Rescue Impulse

July 12, 2011

Red Delicious!

Many thanks to my friend at Oregon Sunshine for sharing these enlightening links from Jon Katz about rescue and what it means for people and for animals. I’ve gotten a lot of food for thought out of these posts and would love to know what you all think of them…

The quality of mercy



Lessons learned

Understanding the rescue impulse

The cycles of rescue

Animals are a test of our humanity. They can teach us how to love, listen. They bring us to mercy and compassion. For me, humanity is not about animals, but people. Animals teach me to be patient. To swallow my frustration. To subordinate my ego in the life and needs of another creature. To give voice to a voiceless being.

They are not about hating people. Or judging them. Or feeling superior to them. For me, animals are never abused or piteous creatures, those are labels we put on them to feel better about ourselves. We do not rescue them. They rescue us. We join in this dance together, them and us. We are saved from a life of cruelty, righteousness. From arrogance. From the disconnection and hostility and greed that poisons the lives of people and drains them of peace of mind. – Animals and humanity

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Holly permalink
    July 12, 2011 12:40 pm

    Whoo boy. Didn’t know Katz had a blog. I”ve read several of his books and have mixed feelings about them.
    I’ve done dog rescue, and it’s very complex (as Katz points out). I’ve decided at this point in life to step back from it……it’s too expensive emotionally and financially. I won’t even consider dipping a toe into equine rescue. If it’s difficult to find homes for canine rescues, I can’t imagine doing it with larger, more care specific animals.
    I think that he’s correct that animals have much to offer us for what is reflected back on us from them and also what is learned from the process of caring/handling/training. One thing I think he did NOT touch on, is that animal husbandry is fading fast. Most people don’t understand it, can’t do it and don’t want to learn it. They have some picture in their head of what it must be like to own a dog or a horse or run a farm and when life turns out not to be like that, they can’t (or don’t want to) fix it. They walk away from it, which leaves rescue to pick up the pieces.
    I also agree with a running theme in his posts, that anthropomorphism is rampant among people anymore and I can’t decide if it’s due to society becoming more individualistic or if it’s something else.

  2. July 12, 2011 5:55 pm

    What an incredibly insightful blog! I read all of them and I have to agree with him on many points. As a rescuer, I think it is very easy to get a ‘hero complex’ and develop a need to be the recipient of all the adoration and drama of the save. Like Jon, I rescue horses for selfish reasons. It gives me a sense of accomplishment to see them bloom and then to find them a home with someone who loves them. I do it for them but I also do it for me.

    I would rescue people too but they won’t stay in the barn.

  3. Animal lover permalink
    November 9, 2012 3:56 pm

    Jon Katz is gong to kill the pony he has now. Is it really true what people have stated on his blog ( and then Jon deletes these comments ) That Jon just keeps getting animals and then Kills them so he has something to write about ??????

    • dog-gone permalink
      December 3, 2012 8:25 pm

      My thought as well. The list of dead animals that did not have to die and whose deaths were never explained is ever growing. I find this guy insufferable!

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