Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony. ~ Thomas Merton

Monday, August 1, 2011

What Would Happen If?

What would happen to your horses (or other pets) if something happened to you?

Do you have a plan or are you hoping the good will of your family will suffice?

This has been bothering me for several days, ever since I engaged in a small discussion following a status post on Facebook.  The comment thread took the general tone that it is up to the surviving members of the family to ensure the safety of surviving pets.

I just don't agree.

What would you think of parents who failed to name suitable guardians for their children, choosing to rely, instead, on the surviving family to decide what was best?

For my horses, I choose to be more proactive.  I choose to make sure they have a soft place to land, no matter what.  I am fortunate that Bleu, through her original owner, already has that safety net.  I owe it to Cricket to give her the same.

I have mapped out several options for Cricket should something happen to me.  I have a good friend and Parelli Professional who has agreed to take her.  As a last resort, she has a place with an amazing equine sanctuary where she can live out the rest of her life, in peace, just being a horse.

Not only have I planned where she will go, I'm working on providing for her care as well.  Partly because she's a bit of a special case and partly because it will ensure she receives the care she needs, she has an inheritance, so to speak.  At present, it's simply a bequest in my will.  As soon as I can get the details worked out, I will set up a pet trust.  For some basic information on Pet Trusts, including states with currently enacted Pet Trust laws, and alternative options, check out the Pet Trust Primer from the ASPCA.

This is not a commitment I made for my lifetime but rather one I made for the lifetime of my horses.

Many have forgotten this truth, but you must never forget it.
You become responsible forever for what you have tamed.
~ The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupery


Susan said...

Wow. This is very timely. Recently I had a conversation with my older sister what plans she had for her children if something catastrophic happened to her and her husband. BUT, the few times I have thought about what would happen to my pets if something should happen to me. . . well. . . I don't know anyone who would take them on in my absence. It makes me sad, but it also makes me take better care of myself and is a reminder to me to drive safer when I commute. Hm. . . maybe I need to talk to you about adopting my horses if something should happen to me!

Lisa said...

I cannot *not* plan for Cricket. She has given me so much and I owe it to her to make sure she's safe. In the eyes of the law, she is property - no different from my TV or my CD collection. It would be nothing short of betrayal if I didn't do everything in my power to ensure her comfort and safety for the rest of her life.

Tina said...

She is always welcome here as well!

Lisa said...

Thanks, Tina. That means a lot to me and I may very well take you up on it.