Adopted Therapy Cat Changes Lives for the Better
Beverly wanted to help others. Turns out, so did a cat named Zane.
Beverly + Zane
Together Beverly and Zane are brightening the lives of others through Zane’s therapy work.
"To see a sad and lonely senior citizen brighten at the sight of Zane... to witness a little child, enduring hospitalization, stop crying at the very sight of Zane... to watch a teen going through cancer treatment cuddle up to Zane and talk to him... this is what his magnetic personality does for others."
Working with therapy animals has always been a passion of mine. It was a sad day when my therapy cat, Junior, died. I didn’t think I would ever find another cat like him, and wondered if I would even be able to continue my passion of helping others through therapy animals.
Three weeks later I was scrolling through Facebook, and there was Zane. He caught my eye in a video depicting several kittens crawling over each other. There he was, lying quietly in the middle. Watching him stay calm in the midst of chaos, I knew he had all the makings of a therapy cat. I reached out to the team at San Antonio Pets Alive!, and when Zane was 8 weeks old, I adopted him.
The day I adopted Zane was bittersweet. l was to present a report for Therapy Animals of San Antonio and I had always carried Junior with me to every meeting. I decided to bring Zane with me. While giving the report, he immediately fell asleep in the crook of my arm with his head hanging off the side. Being in a new environment with strange people hadn’t phased him at all. While I was sad that I no longer had Junior, I was filled with renewed hope thinking of the lives Zane and I were going to be able to impact.
I have still been at a place where I am overcome by grief, loneliness and isolation. Zane has been just the therapy I’ve needed. I’ve quickly learned he is much more. Zane is a social magnet, connecting me to people in a way that I’ve never been able to before. Every outing with Zane is new and exciting; and because of him, I feel more centered and enjoy connecting with people more than ever.
Zane’s outgoing personality gives me the confidence to interact and help others in the therapy work we provide at hospitals, schools, nursing homes and libraries. For us to work as a team to take someone’s focus off their pain or discomfort, or relieve their stress for even a moment, is priceless. To see a sad and lonely senior citizen brighten at the sight of Zane… to witness a little child, enduring hospitalization, stop crying at the very sight of Zane… to watch a teen going through cancer treatment cuddle up to Zane and talk to him… this is what his magnetic personality does for others. Experiencing this helps one re-evaluate their priorities. To be able to share Zane with those who are suffering has made life even more precious to me.
I can honestly say that my life is more fulfilled because of Zane. Without him, I would not be able to reach and impact so many people. Although life has always been precious to me, Zane has helped me see that the real joy in life comes from helping others.
Each year, the Petco Foundation invites adopters to share the story of how their adopted pet changed their lives during the annual Holiday Wishes campaign, giving the organization that they adopted from a chance to receive a grant award. This story by Beverly won San Antonio Pets Alive! in San Antonio, Texas a 2019 Holiday Wishes award.