The picture, which I think is an excellent example of this genre of photograph, is of an ex-Battersea rescue dog, Bertie, parenting and nurturing kittens that were abandoned on the roadside and rescued when they were a mere few weeks old. They were taken in by a member of Battersea’s foster staff. Her dog, Bertie, “quickly took up the mantle as the kittens’ guardian until new homes were found for them”.
There are lots of photographs of dogs parenting kittens and of course you see cats parenting puppies. These are always beautiful interspecies relationships making great photographs. However, I think this photograph is particularly good both for the quality of the image in terms of lighting and the expressions of the animals combined with their arrangement in the photograph. In short, it is a well composed photograph. I expect that it was taken by the foster carer referred to. Well done whoever you are. Update: the foster carer and photographer is Battersea head nurse Rachel. It is her who volunteered to take the kittens home and look after them. Bertie started to look after the kittens about seven weeks ago. Bertie is a one-year-old Labrador retriever.
Rachel said: “Not only has Bertie helped the kids become confident, sociable little cats, is also kept me entertained. As a former Battersea resident himself, there is something particularly touching about seeing a rescue pet now helping to rescue other animals in need. I am incredibly proud of Bertie for the way he has cared for the kittens over the last few weeks.”
I fully agree that it makes this relationship special. This beautiful relationship, after a difficult start to life, shines in comparison to the human cruelty perpetrated when the kittens were abandoned at a few weeks of age on the roadside. The person who did this has a mental problem. I’m not saying that they are mentally ill. I’m just saying that a part of the normal functioning of the brain is missing. And that part deals with decency, morality and sensitivity towards others including animals.
Sadly, there are too many people with this mentality. It normally boils down to a lack of education. There are numerous reasons for a poor education, one of which is inadequate parenting which takes me nicely, full-circle to the photograph on this page in which Bertie is doing an excellent job of parenting vulnerable animals of a different species. He volunteered for it. He’s doing it altruistically. His behavior is in stark contrast to that of the person or persons who threw away the kittens.
Note: ‘Battersea’ refers to the world-renowned Battersea Dogs & Cats Home.
SOME MORE ON CAT RESCUERS: