Life

Helping Animals…No Matter How Small!

My whole life, I’ve always felt compelled to help animals…no matter how small they may be. Even to this day, I do the best I can to not accidentally step on an ant or a worm on a rainy day. When I see an injured animal (including insects), I do the best I can to help them. And that’s just what I did recently.

A couple of days ago, I was out for my morning walk with my grandma; we were on our way to do an errand, when we came across a beautiful monarch butterfly on the sidewalk. I could see his wings opening and closing, so I wondered why this lovely creature was sitting in the middle of a sidewalk where everything (and everyone) was a threat. As I got closer I noticed what looked like a yellow substance below his wings. At first I thought his wing was stuck in something, but upon further inspection, I was saddened to see that the bottom of this butterfly’s body was badly injured. I knew he wasn’t going to survive, but I also knew I couldn’t leave him in the middle of the sidewalk. It was windy and it was cold, and he would have been at risk of being injured further. So I gently guided the butterfly into my hands and my grandma and I decided to bring him home. On the way home, I held the butterfly in my hands close to my body to protect him from the wind. I wasn’t quite sure what to do when we got home, but I knew I had to help any way I could.

As soon as we got home, I instantly did some research into how to care for a butterfly. I figured out what I could offer him to eat and how I could help him to feel more comfortable. Luckily, we already had all we needed to hopefully help this butterfly feel more comfortable. So I guided the butterfly onto a pot of flowers that we have in our house and I was happy to see that he seemed pretty comfortable on them. I then prepared some sugar water and found some aging fruit in our fridge! I didn’t want to bother the butterfly; I knew he wasn’t going to make it because of his injuries, but I decided to offer him the food. I held the food close to his front legs (because they taste through their feet…who knew?!) and he was instantly interested in it. He used his proboscis (his tongue) to drink some of the food and seemed to enjoy it. Shortly that afternoon, though, the butterfly became quite weak (understandable, given his injuries) and had a hard time standing on the flowers. So I helped him onto a softer, more stable surface and he eventually lay down. I left some fruit near him and he kept his foot on it right until the end. Sadly, that evening, he passed away.

Monarch butterflies have always had a special place in my heart. Not only are they absolutely beautiful, but they have meant so much to me since my mom passed away twelve and a half years ago. Unfortunately, there wasn’t much I could do for this lovely butterfly. But I did the best I could to help him feel as comfortable as possible while he passed away. I will always help animals any way I can…no matter how small the animal may be. It’s part of who I am. All life is precious and it’s important to lend a hand when it may be needed.

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