A few days ago a former Reiki student, a beautiful, loving woman who is devoted to the well-being of animals in distress, a woman who I am now honored to call friend, sent me a link to an incredibly moving video: In Memory of Ol’ Boy.

Ol’ Boy was a stray dog who had lived on the streets his whole life. He was found, ill and in pain, on the last day of his life.

The care that he received—not veterinary care, which he also received—but loving care, was exquisite in its tender mercy. Especially moving was the ritual treatment of his body after his passing.


I was so pleased that the services of a communicator had been used and Ol Boy’s wishes followed without question.

In my many years as a communicator, I have learned that the animals have strong opinions about whether they are ready to leave and whether they need assistance. But we need to ask them. And we need to listen to their response.


To me, this gorgeous video is not only about the mercy extended to one dying animal, but raises questions about the ways we can extend mercy to others in our daily lives. Just watching it softened my heart and helped me to walk more softly through the day.

Here’s the link:–1943.html


I hope you will be moved to share your thoughts.

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2 Replies to “Mercy”

  1. Hi Pam,

    Thanks for sharing this beautiful yet heart-wrenching video of Ol’ Boy. (I really think you need a “This video will require at least one handkerchief” warning to go along with it.) It broke my heart to hear that he suffered and howled in pain for three days on his own. Where, when he really needed someone, were the people in the neighbourhood who had taken enough interest in Ol’ Boy to feed him scraps? Anyway I’m glad a few loving people found him, cared for him and honoured his wishes.

    Just like people, animals also deserve to be heard and respected, no matter what their “station” in life. One of the ways we could show more mercy and compassion is to really witness others, ask what they need, and honour their requests the best we can. Maybe the other thing we can do is stop shrugging our way out of taking action by saying “What can I do? It’s too complicated to get involved.” Sometimes it’s not complicated; sometimes the other being, whether two-legged or four-legged , just wants to be seen and wants a connection.

    Peace and blessings,

    1. Thank you, Sue.

      Yes, Ol’ Boy just wanted to be held, to be loved. He knew he was dying; he was not expecting miracles. Small gestures can have such power. I was deeply moved by the message of this video.

      My faith community is currently examining the notion of Hospitality, reaching out to give welcome and comfort to those unlike ourselves–two-legged or four-legged. So this video came to me at exactly the right time (as is most often the case).

      I, too, was horrified that this creature was ignored for three days as he howled in pain. I, too, wondered where the people who had been feeding him were hiding. As you said, perhaps they felt helpless in the face of such suffering. I hope that they have seen or will see this video so that they will understand how little it took to bring Ol’ Boy peace.

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