Several years ago I heard a story on National Public Radio about a man named Leo Grillo. Like many before him, Mr. Grillo moved to Los Angeles to work in the movie industry. Unlike many others however, in addition to acting, he ended up rescuing dogs. A lot of dogs. Over the years, he’s rescued hundreds of them which are cared for at an animal sanctuary he created, D.E.L.T.A. Rescue. What struck me about his story was not the fact that he does such work, nor the fact that he does it on such an epic scale – D.E.L.T.A. Rescue currently provides care for more than 800 dogs – what struck me was the way in which he finds the animals in need.
It began in the 70’s when he kept having a dream about a black Doberman. After several such dreams he saw the dog he had been dreaming about, skinny and alone, walking on the side of the road. He stopped the car and rescued the dog, who he named Delta, meaning “New Beginning”. In the radio story, Mr. Grillo spoke about how it was easy for him to find dogs in need. He said to find them, he would just send a message out to the universe, “Cross my path”. He and Delta would go for hikes or walks and he would think, “Cross my path and I will help you”.
Throughout my life, I’ve had many animals cross my path. While a fair share of them were dogs, I’ve had a variety of other animals as well, both domestic and wild, wander into my yard and life. I never realized that this was unusual, in fact for many years I thought such things happened to people all the time. When I would share a story about the latest animal to show up and people would act like it was odd, I assumed it was happening because of where I lived. I thought that maybe I just lived in an area where people did not control their animals well. In 1997 when my husband and children and I moved to a new home I remember telling them, “Well, this should put an end to our strange animal adventures”. Three weeks later there was an ostrich in my front yard.
It was at that point that I re-evaluated the whole this thing only happens because of where I live theory and realized that this type of thing has been happening to me my whole life, regardless of where I live. Animals show up in my yard or cross my path often, even though I’ve never put the thought “cross my path” out to the universe. In fact, to be blunt, given the amount of animals that have already crossed my path, I’d be a bit fearful to put such a thought out to the universe because I don’t know that I could manage as successfully as Mr. Grillo. Although I’ve helped those I could and most of them have left my care for the better, there were a few instances where I could not help. My friends, who have listened to the stories about the various animals that have come and gone, have encouraged me to write the stories down and share them with others. Some of the stories are heartwarming, some are funny and some are heartbreaking. It is through this blog that I hope to share them all with you.
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