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Nurturing: The Miraculous Instinct

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Staff at the Humane Society in Burlington, Iowa had a problem – a litter of kittens without a mother. Lily, a Labrador cross, whose puppies had been adopted was still lactating. The Humane Society placed the kittens with Lily who nursed them. Adopting them, Lily cleaned and protected her new charges.

Steve Hartman in Assignment America on CBS Evening News (5/9/08) reported Lily’s story and noted other exceptional relationships: a mother cat who offered an orphaned fawn to join her litter, a goat who adopted a colt and most remarkable of all, National Geographic filmed a leopard adopting a baby baboon after killing its mother for a meal. The leopard stretched out and nursed the baby.

These stories demonstrate the incredible power of the instinct to nurture. It is the same instinct thwarted in even the most “humane” dairies, where cows are not allowed to nurse their calves after birthing them.

Perhaps all of us might choose to nurture others.

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This article was written by stanford

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