Welcome, and rest awhile. I imagine, if you’re like me, that you find tranquility in sitting in the woods or at the edge of the sea, and find wonder in all of earth’s creatures. I’ve been so blessed to be able to get to know many animals; to know their needs and their comforts, as well as their fears; to be able to heal them, or hold them gently when their bodies just couldn’t manage anymore.

I’d like to share with you some of those moments.

I’ve held a permit for rehabilitating wildlife for almost 30 years, for small animals and RVS species such as raccoons, foxes, and so forth. The latter requires a greater body of knowledge and very rigid standards for care, habitat, and disease protocols, much of it with the Rhode Island Wildlife Clinic, so I do know what I’m doing. People are sometimes driven by good hearts to try to care for wild orphans they’ve stumbled upon, but the reality is that these creatures need very specialized care and specialized diets. Too many times I’ve been brought a wild baby by someone who meant well, but by the time the baby got to me, it was already suffering from dehydration, infection, or a poor diet. There have been heartbreaking times in my care of wild animals, but there have also been funny, or touching times, and I wouldn’t trade my past experiences for anything.

Besides wildlife, I have rehabilitated orphaned and injured seals, under NOAA guidelines with Mystic Aquarium’s Animal Rescue Clinic, done a lot of kitten and cat fostering for the Rhode Island SPCA, PawsWatch, and other organizations, dog fostering with the National Great Pyrenees Rescue, taught a variety of Humane Education topics (partly with my 3 years as Director of Humane Education at the RISPCA), and currently take care of other people’s dogs in my home, and other pets at theirs, which has been lovely and wonderful. You can find that here: Gentle Paws Pet Sitting.