My Dog Made Me Become a Vegetarian

It’s funny how life works. I had never given a thought to becoming a vegetarian, before. I loved meat, and the thought of never eating it again was laughable. My husband and I adopted the cutest Pomeranian in the entire world, when we got married in 2009. It was my second pet and my husband’s first. Yogi was funny, charming, and so smart. We taught him French. We would get so excited when we would say “Asseyez-vous” and watch him sit. We were in love with our Yogi Bear.

Because Yogi had been through so much by the time we took him in, there was no paperwork on him, and we had no idea how old he was. One day, while visiting my family in Indy, Yogi was out in the yard and suddenly died. It was that day that I realized how precious all life is, no matter how small we may deem it to be. From then on, I don’t kill spiders, and I will go out of my way to not step on an ant or other insect while walking outside. Over time, this concern for life carried over into my eating habits. I saw people purchasing turkeys for Thanksgiving dinner, hams, whole chickens, etc. and it made me think about those animals.

Yogi was afraid of thunderstorms; he loved ice cubes, hugs, and kisses. Whenever we came home from work, he was so excited to see us. Some people say that dogs don’t have emotions, but those people must not be pet owners. Do other animals feel too? I’m sure they don’t want to be killed and used for food. Though I am not a full-fledged vegetarian right now, I have cut a lot of meat out of my diet. My diet is meatless, at least five days out of the week.

I truly believe that we all experience things that we learn from, use to change our lives and help others with. Yogi definitely impacted my life. Maybe I was in his life to show him love and provide him a happy and safe environment before he left this life. And maybe he was in my life to open my eyes and show me compassion and consideration for others, among other things.

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