Squirrels and Other Animals

TRANSCEND MEMBERS, 15 Jan 2024

Dr. Ravi P. Bhatia – TRANSCEND Media Service

A squirrel is a common animal that can easily climb vertically on trees. I often see this 1 foot long yellowish green creature near my home climbing or jumping from one branch of a tree to another. While climbing or descending from a tree, I have never seen it slip — forget about it falling down. Its length can be divided into two parts — its body about six inches long and its tail about the same length.

The tail of this creature or what may be described as a tree climber, is not only equal to its body, it is attractive and often seen to be waving to whosoever is watching it. Why would it be waving, is not known but it makes it look intelligent and attractive and versatile. It seems to be waving to people and requesting them to wave back or say something positive to it.

Many people keep small animals or birds as pets . Having a dog or a number of dogs as pets is quite common. Some people keep cats as pets — how to prevent them fighting with dogs in the same household is an art that one learns gradually.

When one is walking to some destination, and if one sees a cat crossing one’s path, one feels it to be a bad sign. Such people often go back a few steps and walk back to where one is going, feeling secure from the so-called Ill effect of the sight of the cat. Perhaps those people who keep cats as pets do not feel their sight as being bad. In any case, we also wonder why we would treat its sight as a bad omen . A cat is not a dangerous animal and one should not fear its sight as being ominous.

Those people who keep dogs or cats as pets, often want good publicity for their pets. They often send photographs of these animals to some public agencies which publish their photographs and even give marks — out of ten, if the photos are attractive. One can imagine the joy of the owners if the photo gets 6 or 7 or more marks.

Apart from dogs and cats as pets, there are some people who keep a sparrow or a parrot as a caged pet. But one has to take special care to feed  the parrot and give it some water to drink. But it is difficult for a person to give an opportunity for the bird to fly unless the space provided for the bird’s  flying is small and pre determined.

Besides these animals or birds as pets, I knew a person living in USA to have a horse as his pet animal. Of course this person had a huge house where a horse could be accommodated and taken care of.

In India elephants are very common animals. Earlier kings or noblemen used to display these animals dressed attractively and wearing garlands of flowers around their necks. There are some auspicious days when the elephants are dressed in colourful attire and made to walk on some known paths where many onlookers view them and feel a sense of joy and happiness. Unfortunately such sights of elephants marching in their attractive clothes and their bells making lovely music, are now rather infrequent .

The world keeps changing and so do the animals — horses or elephants or camels. The marching of these animals are attractive sights. Such sights are common on special days — Independence Day or Republic Day of India. The only regret one feels looking at these majestic animals is that we should have more occasions to view them marching in their splendour.

While watching their marching, some people narrate the stories when they were were marching with such animals attired attractively and onlookers were clapping happily.

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Dr Ravi P Bhatia is a member of the TRANSCEND Network for Peace Development Environment, an educationist, Gandhian scholar and peace researcher. Retired professor, Delhi University. His new book, A Garland of Ideas—Gandhian, Religious, Educational, Environmental was published recently in Delhi. ravipbhatia@gmail.com

This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 15 Jan 2024.

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